The Fox and the FuryPatrick Dalton sails again in The Fox and the Fury with no friends except his faithful crew. Still loyal to the king despite being wrongly accused of treason, he is pursued by the Royal Navy, the British Army and a British lawman (a sort of English Inspector Javert). Fair game for colonial (whig) privateers and navy, he is also hunted by loyalist (tory) raiders because of his cargo. As if that's not enough, he runs afoul of Spanish pirates whose insane captain makes Dalton's destruction a personal project. Plenty of action, as you can imagine.

Of course, setting up all these conflicts makes for a long exposition and it is 100+ pages before Dalton and his crew are afloat. Be sure to read the The Fox and the Faith first, or this may not hold your interest. Once Dalton raises his sails, however, the action is lively and carries the reader without pause to the end of the book.

Parkinson give more rein to his humor than in the first book of the series, to great effect. Sometimes it's just a phrase that brings a smile ("Constance has a whim of iron."), but Parkinson also sets up extended tropes that create several charming "who's on first" moments. The sailmaker is a ringer for Benjamin Franklin and no colonial can be dissuaded from believing that is his identity, to the bewilderment of all Britishers. The language games are endless and hilarious. There are two Indians aboard who speak broad Cockney, which only one crew member, a Londoner, can understand. There is only one man who can speak German with the five Hessian deserters who serve as marines. Mix in the Spanish pirates and some French non-combatants and we get wonderful misunderstandings and translations of translations that play out like a game of telephone.

After a slow start, TFATFury is a cracking good read with hold-your-breath action and wry humor. Read it.

Description of: The Fox and the Fury

Author: Dan Parkinson

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