Originally published on the The Old Salt Blog
Alaric Bond's latest novel, The Guinea Boat, is set in the south-east of England during the brief Peace of Amiens of 1803. Two young men, Nat and Alex, meet in the coastal village of Hastings and become friends. Both are outsiders. Nat has left home seeking to make his way in the world and is a stranger in the village, whereas Alex is the son of a local Revenue officer, who died under mysterious circumstances, leaving Alex an outcast in a village which depends on smuggling as well as fishing for its livelihood. While England and France are no longer at war, no one expects the peace to last, and life in Hastings and along the coast is anything but peaceful. Family feuds, the ongoing struggle between smugglers and the preventative men, as well as intrigues with the French, each have their own risks and dangers.
After being caught up and then unexpectedly freed from a hot press, Nat and Alex go their separate ways. Alex follows his father's path and joins the Revenue Service, while Nat charts a more nefarious course into smuggling and free-lance espionage. The action takes place at sea, as well as on both sides of the English Channel. Fans of Bond's "Fighting Sail" series will not be disappointed in this fast paced tale even if the Royal Navy stays largely in port. The smugglers prove as challenging and formidable a foe as the French. Highly recommended.
Description of: The Guinea Boat
Author: Alaric Bond