Julian Stockwin

Having started on the Hornblower books back when I was still in primary school I’ve always had a weakeness for naval historical fiction, but tend to pick and choose rather than devouring everything the genre throws up willy nilly. Having started with a copy of Kydd, this series, which takes Thomas Kydd from press-ganged seaman to (I’m guessing here) Admiral of the Fleet or some similar lofty pinnacle has largely ended up on the shelves via the el cheapo sections of newsagents and bookstores, and the curvent state of the shelves means further purchases are unlikely and I’ll catch the next instalments through the local library.

Stockwin, I learned through the checking process that delivers these details to this part of the site, served both in the British and Australian navies and was, in fact, on watch aboard HMAS Melbourne when she collided with the Voyager back when I was in high school. In the interim, Stockwin has worked in IT and software development while serving in . the Royal Navy Reserve, retiring with the rank of Lieutenant Commander 


  • The Admiral's Daughter (2007) where Commander Kydd is back in command of the Teazer after he and Renzi have returned from the South Seas, as tensions are between England and France escalate and Kydd sets out in pursuit of privateers and smugglers while fending off the attentions of his commander’s daughter and falling for a local beauty, a situation that may end his friendship with Renzi as well as effectively terminating his naval career.
  • Treachery (2008) where Kydd is sent to the Channel Islands, framed and from his command with only the steadfast Renzi willing to support him in his quest to clear his name. Kydd finds life increasingly difficult as the two of them eke out an existence in Guernsey. Needing a job, Renzi moves to Jersey, where he’s appointed Secretary to the Commander at Mont Orgueil castle and becomes involved in a plot to kidnap Napoleon. Meanwhile, Kyd’s reputation as a seaman gains him the captaincy of a privateer, and while his initial excursion is a failure, given a second chance by a different syndicate he goes on to great success as a privateer and ends up a wealthy man with his honour restored after Renzi uncovers the details of the plot that removed Kydd from his command. 
  • Invasion (2009) has Kydd reinstated into Teazer, though the relative quiet around the Channel Islands has his Admiral decide he’d be better off at the sharp end of things and transfers Teazer to the Downs Fleet, which has been charged with thwarting Napoleon’s invasion plans. As it turns out there’s not a great deal Kydd, Renzi and Teazer can do to head off the threatened invasion, butthere’s an interesting excursion into the future of naval warfare as Renzi persuades American inventor Robert Fultonto switch his plans to build a submarine to English soil and Kydd babysits the inventor as he goes about his business.
  • Victory (2010) opens with the loss of Teazer following an action off Ushant, which leaves Commander Kydd without an appointment, a situation that’s remedied when he finds himself promoted into a recenttly captured French frigate, seemingly at Admiral Nelson’s request. Kydd and L’Aurore join Nelson’s Mediterranean Fleet, and while he’s only involved on the edge of the Battle of Trafalgar Stockwin uses Midshipman Bowden, who’d served with Kydd before being transferred into HMS Victory to provide an on the spot perspective from the middle of the battle.
  • Conquest, which takes place immediately in the wake of the British victory at Trafalgar, as England sets about setting up the basis for future imperial ambitions. Kydd joins an expedition to capture Cape Town from the Dutch and secure the sea-route to India. While the expedition is successful until reinforcements can arrive the British hold on the Cape Colony will be tenuous, and Kydd and Renzi are placed in a position to foil a French attempt to recapture the Cape..

On My Shelves:

Kydd (2001)

Artemis (2002)

Seaflower (2003)

Mutiny (2004)

Quarterdeck (2005)

Tenacious (2005)

Command (2006)

© Ian Hughes 2012