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The Congo Rovers A Story of the Slave Squadron   By: (1851-1922)

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The Congo Rovers: A Story of the Slave Squadron by Harry Collingwood takes readers on a thrilling adventure through the treacherous jungles of Africa. Set in the early 19th century, this historical fiction novel provides a vivid account of the illegal slave trade and the heroic efforts of those who fought against it.

The protagonist, Harry Elphinstone, is a courageous young officer who finds himself assigned to a British naval vessel tasked with intercepting slave ships along the African coast. As the story unfolds, Elphinstone's character undergoes a remarkable transformation, growing more determined and resolute in his mission to put an end to the barbaric practice of enslaving innocent lives.

Collingwood's writing skillfully paints the vivid landscape of the Congo, bringing to life the dense jungles, dangerous rivers, and mysterious tribes. The author's attention to detail and thorough research make for a realistic and captivating reading experience, immersing readers in the challenges and dangers faced by Elphinstone and his crew.

One of the notable strengths of this novel is the carefully crafted plot, which combines action-packed sequences with political intrigue. The author's ability to seamlessly weave historical events into the narrative lends credibility to the story, giving readers a glimpse into the complex web of power dynamics that fueled the slave trade.

Moreover, Collingwood does an excellent job of developing a colorful cast of characters that add depth and complexity to the story. From Elphinstone's loyal comrades to the enigmatic African tribespeople, each character plays a crucial role in the unfolding drama, offering different perspectives and motivations.

While the book is primarily an adventure tale, it also tackles important themes such as justice, ethics, and the suffering endured by enslaved individuals. Collingwood navigates these sensitive topics with sensitivity, highlighting the moral dilemma faced by those involved in the fight against slavery.

However, some readers may find that the pacing occasionally lags during the exposition, and a few scenes could have been condensed to maintain a more consistent momentum. Despite this minor drawback, the compelling storyline and well-drawn characters ultimately make up for any shortcomings.

In conclusion, The Congo Rovers: A Story of the Slave Squadron is an engaging historical fiction novel that transports readers to a time of great social upheaval and upheaval. Harry Collingwood expertly blends historical events with a riveting tale of adventure, making this book a must-read for fans of both the genre and those interested in the African slave trade.

First Page:

The Congo Rovers A Story of the Slave Squadron

By Harry Collingwood This book by Collingwood is a good story, but as your reviewer has said elsewhere, told in a rather long winded manner, and in the notably Kingston style and format that Collingwood often adopts. Why not? Kingston was dead before Collingwood started to write, and the style had been proved to be what young readers of the era liked.

The format specifically is that the book starts with a young boy who is suddenly offered a posting as a midshipman in a naval vessel about to sail in a few days' time. The boy accepts, and the story goes on from there. THE CONGO ROVERS A STORY OF THE SLAVE SQUADRON


A Story of the Slave Squadron.



"Um!" ejaculated my father as he thoughtfully removed his double eye glass from his nose with one hand, and with the other passed a letter to me across the breakfast table "Um! this letter will interest you, Dick. It is from Captain Vernon."

My heart leapt with sudden excitement, and my hand trembled as I stretched it out for the proffered epistle. The mention of Captain Vernon's name, together with the announcement that the subject matter of the letter was of interest to me, prepared me in a great measure for the intelligence it conveyed; which was to the effect that the writer, having been appointed to the command of the sloop of war Daphne , now found himself in a position to fulfil a promise of some standing to his dear and honoured friend Dr Hawkesley (my father) by receiving his son (myself) on board the sloop, with the rating of midshipman... Continue reading book >>

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