THE SLEEPING SWORD by Pearl Frye

THE SLEEPING SWORD

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Sequel to (published in August, 1950- reported in that year on P. 337), this takes up the story of Lord Nelson from the time when- recognizing a peril he could not face- he ran away from temptation in the form of Lady Hamilton. Save for the romantic interludes, which in this book form a substantial part of the story, the text holds even more exactly to the pattern of history than the earlier volume, reading at times like a closely reasoned naval history. Nelson as a man- as a naval genius- as a frustrated hero, whose recognition lags behind his achievement, comes through the pages as a less likable figure than in his youth, but one for which sympathy is inevitable. Torn by his passion fro Emma Hamilton (she seems to me a shadowy creature, whose fascination rarely touches the reader) his growing resentment and distaste for his wife -- Nelson was always, in this part of his life, a divided man, yearning for a life with his Emma and the small Horatia, yearning too for freedom of command to achieve his goal, encounter with the French fleet on his terms. This he wins- only to fall to his death, as victory is within his grasp at Trafalgar. A scholarly book, but one designed more for the strategist than the romanticist.

Pub Date: July 7th, 1952
Publisher: Little, Brown