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Owen Hartley; or, Ups and Downs A Tale of Land and Sea   By: (1814-1880)

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Owen Hartley; or, Ups and Downs A Tale of Land and Sea is a riveting coming-of-age story by William Henry Giles Kingston. Set against the backdrop of the 19th-century maritime world, this novel takes readers on an exhilarating journey filled with adventure, resilience, and personal growth.

The protagonist, Owen Hartley, is a young boy who finds himself thrust into the harsh realities of life at a tender age. From the very beginning, the readers are drawn to Owen's courage and determination as he navigates various challenges and hardships. Kingston masterfully depicts the emotional turmoil and personal dilemmas faced by Owen, skillfully crafting a multi-faceted character who readers easily connect with.

One of the most commendable aspects of this book is the vivid and descriptive writing style employed by Kingston. His attention to detail enables readers to visualize the diverse landscapes, treacherous seas, and bustling ports. The author's use of nautical terminology adds authenticity to the story, making it a fascinating education on life at sea during that era.

Moreover, Kingston's clever plot twists and turns inject an element of suspense, making Owen's journey all the more gripping. The author skillfully intertwines moments of heartache, triumph, and self-discovery, ensuring that readers are kept engrossed throughout. These unexpected twists heighten the emotional resonance of the story, leaving a lasting impact on the reader.

The supporting characters in Owen Hartley; or Ups and Downs are equally well-developed, each with their own unique personalities and motivations. From fellow sailors to unscrupulous villains, Kingston presents a rich tapestry of individuals who contribute to Owen's growth and shape the narrative. This diverse cast adds depth and complexity to the story, creating a truly immersive reading experience.

While Owen Hartley; or, Ups and Downs A Tale of Land and Sea is primarily an adventure novel, it also explores important themes such as loyalty, friendship, love, and the pursuit of dreams. Kingston expertly weaves these themes into the narrative, guiding readers towards introspection and reflection. This elevates the story beyond mere entertainment, making it a thought-provoking read.

In conclusion, William Henry Giles Kingston's Owen Hartley; or, Ups and Downs A Tale of Land and Sea is a captivating novel that combines elements of adventure, history, and personal growth. Seamlessly blending descriptive prose, engaging characters, and heartfelt storytelling, Kingston creates an unforgettable reading experience. Whether you're a fan of maritime tales or enjoy immersing yourself in captivating journeys, this book is sure to leave a lasting impression.

First Page:

Owen Hartley; or, Ups and Downs, A Tale of Land and Sea, by William H G Kingston.

Owen is a teenager who had been quite well educated, but who had just been orphaned. There is a family relation who has a shipping business in Wapping, London. A kind friend escorts the boy there, and he is granted an interview with the head of the firm, his relation. He is able to prove to the old man that he is indeed his relation, and is given a job as an assistant clerk. He does his work very well, and it is decided that he ought to be sent on a round trip away by sea, so that he shall understand more of the business.

Unfortunately the kind and helpful captain is taken ill, and his place is taken by the mate, who is a very nasty piece of work. Owen is supposed to be an honoured passenger, but is ordered to give up his cabin, and take a berth among the ship's boys. One of the boys, Nat, is an especial target for the general nastiness of the mate, now the captain. Owen had previously rescued Nat when he had fallen overboard, and they had become great friends.

The stupid and drunken mate, now acting as the captain, insists one day that his sunsight is correct, while everybody else's is wrong, and insists on the ship holding her course, which the other officers knew would lead her into danger... Continue reading book >>

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