Lonely Sea

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HarperCollins Publishers, Feb 17, 2015 - Fiction - 304 pages
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Collection of riveting tales of the sea including the story that launched his writing career, the account of the epic battle to sink the German battle ship, Bismarck, and two new stories collected here for the first time.


Alistair MacLean has an unmistakable and unrivalled skill in writing about the sea and its power and about the men and women who sail it, and who fight and die in it.

His distinctive voice was evident from his very first prize-winning story, The Dileas, and has been heard time and again in his international career as the author of such bestsellers as H.M.S. Ulysses and San Andreas.

The Lonely Sea starts where MacLean s career started, with The Dileas, and collects together his stories of the sea. Here is a treasury of vintage MacLean, compelling and brilliant, where the master storyteller is in his element.

This reissue includes two new stories, The Good Samaritan and The Black Storm, which bear all the classic hallmarks of MacLean s finest writing and are published here for the very first time.


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This is a mixed bag of early Alistair Maclean short stories, some of which are almost too short. Many are just descriptions of naval actions, which are well written and frankly horrific to imagine but somewhat disjointed and not as satisfying as expected. There are some fictional stories as well which are potentially good but again too short to enjoy. 

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About the author (2015)

Alistair MacLean, the son of a Scots minister, was brought up in the Scottish Highlands. In 1941 he joined the Royal Navy. After the war he read English at Glasgow University and became a schoolmaster. The two and a half years he spent aboard a wartime cruiser were to give him the background for HMS Ulysses, his remarkably successful first novel, published in 1955. He is now recognized as one of the outstanding popular writers of the 20th century, the author of 29 worldwide bestsellers, many of which have been filmed.

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