Books Should Be Free
Loyal Books
Free Public Domain Audiobooks & eBook Downloads
Search by: Title, Author or Keyword

True Blue   By: (1814-1880)

Book cover

First Page:

True Blue A British Seaman of the Old School, by W.H.G. Kingston.

From an Introduction by Herbert Strang.

The present volume gives a capital description of life in the Navy in days of the old three decker, and many interesting particulars of the naval warfare in the revolutionary period, including the battle of the "glorious first of June." It differs from the average boys' story in one important respect. The hero, instead of gaining a title and a fortune, refuses to rise above the class in which he was born, and attains no higher rank than that of a warrant officer. The author skilfully introduces little touches and incidents, such as True Blue's conduct when at a theatrical performance, which make his career seem entirely natural and reasonable, and enlists the sympathy and approval of the reader. "He had not aimed high, in one sense of the word," says Kingston in the closing pages, "and yet he had in another sense always aimed high and nobly to do his duty." In Kingston's eyes no mariner, nor any other man, could have higher praise.




The old Terrible , 74, was ploughing her way across the waters of the Atlantic, now rolling and leaping, dark and angry, with white crested seas which dashed against her bows and flew in masses of foam over her decks. She was under her three topsails, closely reefed; but even thus her tall masts bent, and twisted, and writhed, as if striving to leap out of her, while every timber and bulkhead fore and aft creaked and groaned, and the blocks rattled, and the wind roared and whistled through the rigging in chorus; and the wild waves rolled and tumbled the big ship about, making her their sport, as if she was a mere cock boat.

Stronger and stronger blew the gale; darkness came on and covered the world of waters, and through that darkness the ship had to force her way amid the foaming, hissing seas. Darker and darker it grew, till the lookout men declared that they might as well have shut their eyes, for they could scarcely make out their own hands when held at arm's length before their noses.

Suddenly, however, the darkness was dispelled by the vivid flashes of lightning, which, darting from the low hanging clouds, circled about their heads, throwing a lurid glare on the countenances of all on deck. Once more all was dark; then again the forked lightning burst forth hissing and crackling through the air, leaping along the waves and playing round the quivering masts. Now the big ship plunged into the trough of the sea with a force which made it seem as if she was never going to rise again; but up the next watery height she climbed, and when she got to the top, she stopped as if to look about her, while the lightning flashed brighter than ever; and then, rolling and pitching, and cutting numerous other antics, she lifted up her stern as if she was going to give a vicious fling out with her heels, and downwards she plunged into the dark obscurity, amid the high foam topped seas, which hissed and roared high above her bulwarks. Her crew walked her deck with but little anxiety, although they saw that the gale was likely to increase into a hurricane; for they had long served together, they knew what each other was made of, and they had confidence in their officers and in the stout ship they manned.

The watch below had hitherto remained in their hammocks, and most of them, in spite of the gale, slept as soundly as ever. What cared they that the ship was roiling and tumbling about? They knew that she was watertight and strong, that she had plenty of sea room, and that they would be roused up quickly enough if they were wanted. There was one person, however, who did not sleep soundly that was her Captain, Josiah Penrose... Continue reading book >>

eBook Downloads
ePUB eBook
• iBooks for iPhone and iPad
• Nook
• Sony Reader
Kindle eBook
• Mobi file format for Kindle
Read eBook
• Load eBook in browser
Text File eBook
• Computers
• Windows
• Mac

Review this book

Popular Genres
More Genres
Paid Books