"We've beat them before and we'll beat them again."
In 1803, Napoleon smashes the Peace of Amiens, going to war once again. This is doubly alarming news for Captain Jack Aubrey, who is taking refuge in France from his creditors. He is interned but soon escapes from his French debtor's prison, fleeing across the French countryside to lead a ship into battle. After managing to avert a possible mutiny, he pursues his quarry straight into the mouth of a French-held harbor. Stephen Maturin's struggles, with himself as much as with a proud and intelligent woman, are woven into Aubrey's, straining their friendship at times to the breaking point.
The high-seas excitement continues in this second installment of Patrick O'Brian's highly acclaimed series.