As an experienced French captain Jean-François de Galaup de Lapérouse in 1785 in Lake stabbed, he had a few decades late. France had fallen behind on the seas of the world. Whether the British were now organizing faster, reckless or skillful, they had hoisted around for over two hundred years, the Union Jack the globe on every beach, was landed at the one of their ships. Merchants had established trading posts, researchers surveyed the place, the terrain explored flora and fauna described and drawn.
Also, Portuguese, Spanish and Dutch had long global way.
However, the French King Louis XVI is. Lapérouse the costly mission equipped with two ultra-modern and highly qualified occupied ships, the Boussole and Astrolabe , the Pacific Ocean in the northern and southern hemispheres to explore. is intended to give the global trade opportunities an ambitious, multi-year enterprise that France Prestige and a bigger bite.
But what glory is there to win, where the oceans long since crossed by lucrative trade routes taken all known islands in possession and managed ports and shoals are marked on the charts? There is hardly an area between North and South Poles, construction sophisticated navigational instruments and medical knowledge (about scurvy), apply in the non-British as pioneers and experts.
Over all perched James Cook, the immensely profitable in the past two decades, three world tours had made and had come to death at his last. That’s only six years ago. A marble bust of the unattainable is on the desk in Lapérouse ‘cabin.
In addition, accompanying the commander, a second programmatic bust. Jean-Jacques Rousseau (died seven years earlier) represents the enlightened, rational attitude, with the intention to meet the French Pacific world as travelers with open eyes and ears. Chandler pettiness, subjugation, exploitation, proselytizing and intolerance shall be ended.
But all are aware that are to bring more of the hedgehog no sensations when he sails behind the hare. Perhaps you can find somewhere in the vast expanse still a hitherto overlooked Eiland, a stretch of coastline that France once something can any be profitable. But most likely it will stay with little honor. it will appreciate sailors when one or the other ghost island that was never, get rid of their cards as a fog bank in the telescope and the misleading erroneous position a bay or a reef is finally corrected. In academic circles will be appreciated, what new animals, track plants, minerals ambitious scientists on distant shores
About Us raises the (heretical). Question: Does all this as a novel substance? As for the results of his extensive travels, remains Lapérouse eternal runner-up. Even includes Lapérouse Museum in his home town of Albi, just two (unmissable!) Rooms. And is not even the literary subject in the shade of British pioneer? Successful historical novels before colonial background in exotic locations abound Naomi J. Williams surprised the same in her debut novel.
What we rarely or never read (and I missed a long time), scenes from everyday life on the high seas of life-threatening storms of battle clashes from Lapérouse ‘moving past life (including in the Indian Ocean, the American Revolutionary war) or even dramatic. this is something, as well as the disastrous end of the expedition in 1788, as Boussole and Astrolabe under until today not completely clarified circumstances with all hands disappeared without a trace, appears only indirectly, as a side note, in retrospect.
Art of the recess of the obvious? More than that. Compared to O’Brian missing saltwater adventure, compared with Joseph Conrad lacking suspense and massive tragedy. Who can do without these items and even on a consistent plot line, is a multi-perspective, multi-stylistic, enjoy multiepisodischen social novel that plays occasionally on planks. At the end of many wonderful, differentiated character images are made up of the infinite number of mosaic pieces, with the amazing portraits of marginal figures of traditional historical research – the wife of a governor in Chile, an Inuit girl in Alaska, the wife of a French shipwrecked in the Solomon Islands – the most lasting impress. Especially here Naomi J. Williams proves already in her first novel, convincing quality and design originality. Interesting that the essence is to feel such a global expedition, their uncertainties and risks, you Tragik-, of disappointment and happiness potential very intense about all the conversations and second- and third-hand reports without is that this kind ever spread scenic.
Stay fail to mention that the drafting preceded this original novel tremendous research. Even in this respect, however, the author circumnavigated too close Lying: With regard to sailing, navigation and natural history, geology, we know only superficial. The more knowledgeable she writes about winter living conditions in Siberia, the tricks of the portrait painter on copper engraving facsimiles and biographical details of their (historical) figures. (Translated by Monika Köpfer excellent) the bulk of her book designed Naomi J. Williams course of its rich, disciplined imagination.
An intelligently designed, psychologically finely intimate, elegantly worded, easily be underestimated debut that runs unfortunately danger , those who are attracted by subject and title to disappoint, and those who could inspire deter by title and subject.