The Patriot’s Fate

Written by Alaric Bond
Review by Justin M. Lindsay

It is 1798, and Ireland is rising up against her British masters. Two friends, Crowley and King — the one Irish and the other British — find themselves on opposite sides of the upcoming conflict, though neither knows it. Crowley wants no part of the war but nevertheless ends up aboard a French ship and under the leadership of a zealous patriot. King is eager to see the rebellion thwarted, though his part will require him to risk his life and the lives of everyone aboard to do so. Though separated by chance, these two men will be tragically and inextricably drawn into the same battle

The Patriot’s Fate is Bond’s fifth installment in his Fighting Sail series. Though many nautical novels set in the 18th and 19th centuries claim to have taken up the mantles of both O’Brian and Forester, this one actually comes close. It’s thoughtful and, like O’Brian, doesn’t leap from one broadside to the next but instead gets the reader inside the head of his characters as they grapple with conflicting loyalties, oaths, friendships, and painful decisions. There were parts of the novel that were slow for me, and I probably would have benefited from reading the prior books in the series, but I was rewarded by a very powerful and climactic ending. Fans of the Age of Fighting Sail should enjoy this book.