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Snarleyyow or The Dog Fiend   By: (1792-1848)

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Snarleyyow or The Dog Fiend by Frederick Marryat is a riveting piece of fictional literature that showcases the incredible talent and creativity of the author. Set in the late 18th century, the story takes us on an unforgettable journey, exploring themes of loyalty, revenge, and the unpredictability of human nature.

The novel's captivating protagonist is Snarleyyow, an atypical dog with a dark past and a mischievous streak. Despite his reputation as a "dog fiend," perpetuated by exaggerated tales and superstitions, Snarleyyow is at heart a loyal companion to his happy-go-lucky master, Tom. The bond between the two is tested when they embark on a treacherous sea voyage aboard the HMS Jupiter, a ship teeming with eccentric characters.

The author's writing style is both engaging and entertaining, drawing readers into a world of seafaring adventures and unforeseen dangers. Marryat's profound knowledge of naval life adds authenticity to the narrative, as he vividly describes the intricacies of life on board a warship. From the salty sailors to the undulating ocean waves, every detail comes to life, immersing the reader in a truly immersive experience.

One of the book's highlights is the gripping plot, filled with unexpected twists and turns. Snarleyyow becomes a central figure, catalyzing a series of events that are alternately hilarious, heartwarming, and harrowing. As the story progresses, his presence transcends that of a mere dog, embodying the themes of loyalty and friendship.

Marryat masterfully intertwines moments of comedic relief with instances of suspense, making it impossible to put the book down. The interactions between the crew members aboard the ship are replete with wit and humor, providing a refreshing counterbalance to the darker and more dramatic moments.

Deep beneath the surface, Snarleyyow or The Dog Fiend also offers thought-provoking commentary on society and human nature. Marryat explores themes such as justice, prejudice, and the destructive consequences of rumor and hearsay. With clever allegories and sharp insights, the author challenges readers to reflect on their own biases and the power of collective opinion.

Moreover, Marryat's character development is commendable. Each member of the crew is uniquely portrayed, exhibiting a range of personalities and motivations. From the valiant captain to the conniving culprits, the characters feel authentic and multi-dimensional.

While the book may not be widely known or hailed as a literary masterpiece today, Snarleyyow or The Dog Fiend is an engrossing tale that deserves recognition. Frederick Marryat's skillful storytelling, nuanced characters, and engaging plot ensure that readers will be entertained from beginning to end. Whether you are a fan of naval fiction or simply enjoy a well-crafted adventure, this book is undoubtedly worth adding to your reading list.

First Page:

Snarley yow, or The Dog Fiend, by Captain Marryat.

"Snarley yow", or "The Dog Fiend" was published in 1837, the eleventh book to flow from Marryat's pen.

You could say that this book is a chronicle of the doings of various hopeless people, who are constantly being unkind to one another, and in particular, except for his owner, to the rather horrible dog. But no matter what is put in hand to do the dog in, he always somehow seems to survive, and to re appear just as unattractive and nasty as ever.

That might be enough for the story, but in addition it is set in a period of British history when the King was of Dutch origin, and so many of his courtiers, and officials in general, also hailed from the Netherlands. This meant that the naval vessel at the centre of the story was travelling to and from the Netherlands a lot of the time, which gave scope for various activities on the side, as it were.

Created as an eBook in 1998 by Nick Hodson, and reformatted in 2005.




It was in the month of January, 1699, that a one masted vessel, with black sides, was running along the coast near Beachy Head, at the rate of about five miles per hour... Continue reading book >>

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