Firstly, let me just say it takes guts and a lot of hard work to write Historical Fiction. I have a lot of respect for all writers, but a ton more for Historical Fiction writers. Recreating a world setting that is not only accurate but still entertaining is no small feat.
Thank you to Author D.E. Stockman for gifting me a review copy in exchange for my honest review.
Following the story of Abraham Robinson, a shipwright working during the war between England and France in 1742, The Ship’s Carpenter follows a long and intricate storyline. Falling in love in a time of war proves more difficult than Abraham or Yvette could imagine. Throw in previous loves, scheming mothers and political challenges and you will find yourself on an adventure you might not be so prepared for.
This Debut novel proves to be a relatively easy to follow read. With about 200 pages jam-packed with information and adventure, you might feel slightly overwhelmed, but all in all, I did enjoy this book. The details in this novel are well thought out and beautifully written. You can see a real passion for woodwork and ships come through in the writing.
It’s a bit slower in pace compared to my usual reads, which would make it ideal for first time readers of Historical fiction. I would not necessarily give this to younger readers looking for something in this genre, purely because of the scandalous love affair Yvette and Abraham has. If you are a conservative reader, you can easily skip over these small sections and still enjoy the story.
The characters are unique and colourful. Yvette is quite headstrong and out of the norm for the era, but I liked that. She is the main reason I felt I had to finish the book. She brought the story to life for me, and I would have loved to see more of her.
Something I find quite interesting is the detail in the descriptions of the settings and land markers. This setting is well thought out and expertly planned. I could easily envisage myself in the world consistently.
I did feel that there are many characters to keep track of in this novel, which was stealing a little from the main storyline in my opinion. It did feel like there could easily have been two full books from this merged storyline. I am however very glad for the colour each and every character brought to the story.
If you like historical fiction based on the sea, and fell in love with the era of King Louis, this book is for you.
In late summer 1742, shipwright Abraham Robinson leaves London to work at France’s great shipyard in Brest where his life changes dramatically. There he falls in love with Yvette, only to lose both his position and lover as war begins. Returning to England, the navy presses him to serve as a ship’s carpenter, tearing him from his plans. Great sea battles, dangerous escapes, and ravaging fires challenge Abraham and Yvette’s lives from London to the colonies of North America. Throughout, historical and fictional characters cross their paths to help and hinder, but not all survive to achieve their goals in this first book of the Tween Sea and Shore Series.
About the Author
David grew up in the Midwest. After high school he served overseas as a Russian translator in the U.S. Air Force. When he graduated from Northeastern Illinois University with a degree in art, David turned to painting and the graphic arts. In and near Chicago, this profession carried him from publication printing of periodicals such as National Geographic and Playboy magazines, to book publishing for imprints of Simon & Schuster, Harcourt Brace & Co., and Pearson Education, and eventually to writing, first articles for an e-magazine and trade journals, and then novels.
His current book series, Tween Sea and Shore, follows the adventures of noted historical and fictional characters linked to a frigate, la Renommée. The French ship’s story, researched by the author for over a decade, uncovered remarkable connections among people in the mid- 1700s. David unveils their story beginning with his debut book, The Ship’s Carpenter.