In this installment in the Lord Ramage series, Captain Lord Ramage and his HMS Calypso return from Devil’s Island, but dark news awaits them: Ramage’s wife Sarah is missing. And even though Ramage wants so return home immediately, he Ramage’s Trial, by Dudley Pope is ordered to shepherd a slow convoy of merchant ships back to England. The trip turns out to be difficult, as the Calypso is attacked by an English ship which he subsequently boards and takes control over.
This strange event leads Lord Ramage to yet another court-martial when he is back in Plymouth, as the other captain files charges against Ramage for having boarded his ship and removing him from his command. And, as destiny will have it, it is presided over by none other than his old nemesis, Rear-Admiral Goddard. Everything seems hopeless. Ramage is unable to have witnesses discuss the event in a light that would bring the truth to the fore. And, as Ramage is unable to find any way to prove that his actions were justified, he feels a sentence of death is a very possible outcome! He is forced to undergo a battle that will require his very all.
This is a very interesting and good book. It reads to a large extent as a thriller or a crime book. The motives behind the strange behavior are unclear, and as a reader I kept turning the pages, waiting for the explanation and waiting for Ramage to be able to tell the court. Ramage’s Trial is an unusual naval fiction book and a great read! The story is captivating.
Takes over the helm from Hornblower. — Daily Mirror