This site is dedicated to Patrick O’Brian’s epic Aubrey/Maturin series, which many have called “the greatest historical novels ever written”- and I agree with them! It’s my goal to put together a site with a dual purpose:
- To provide a forum for fans to participate in a group read of the series and discuss each book in depth
- To provide resources to enhance the already awesome experience of reading these amazing books
There is definitely not a lack of information about the series online… There’s almost an overabundance. When I first read the books, what I really wanted was some kind of resource to guide me through them and help me focus. Instead, I found a massive pile of information about every single thing ever mentioned in the entire series. Don’t get me wrong: it’s AWESOME, all of that information is important. But it’s also daunting, and doesn’t really solve the problem of needing a guide. What I hope to do with this site (no guarantees I’ll be successful) is distill all of that raw information down into vocabulary lists, reading guides, character profiles, maps, historical notes… Anything that might enrich the already rewarding journey these books take us on, hopefully presented in a straightforward way.
To be clear, I’m not saying any of this is necessary to enjoy the novels. Nothing except the novels themselves are necessary to enjoy the novels; they’re brilliant all on their own. And there’s something to be said for immersion, for reading them just for the pure pleasure. But there’s also something to be said for reading them in a focused way. My first reading was of the immersive kind; now that I’m embarking on my second, I want it to be focused and I can’t be the only one I’m also sure that any fan of the series will agree that it is so rich and so textured that you can’t help but want to go further in depth and learn everything possible about the world of Jack and Stephen, which again requires focus.
A key aspect of this desire for focus is the desire to read the series with others, and that’s what I hope the discussion board will provide. I think that having a group of people who share my love of these novels and going deeper into the world they portray together will make the experience even more satisfying, if such a thing is even possible! Plus it’s always nice to meet people who share one’s obsession, and this series certainly is mine.
34° 3′ 8″ N x 118° 14′ 34″ W