It is 1777, the Year of the Hangman, and Captain Isaac Biddlecomb is bound for Philadelphia with his wife and child in the Continental brig Charlemagne. His orders are to take command of the newly built twenty-gun frigate Falmouth and get her out to sea before she is taken by General Richard Howe’s invading army.
Unbeknownst to Biddlecomb, the entire British fleet stands between him and the new nation’s capital. Forced to run his beloved Charlemagne aground, Biddlecomb comes face-to-face with his mortal enemy, Royal Navy Lieutenant John Smeaton. Meanwhile, General Washington has yielded Philadelphia to Britain’s might. As Biddlecomb and his crew battle to reach the prized Falmouth, only shipwright Malachi Foote and a ragtag band of deserters from the Continental Army stand between the vessel and the seemingly unstoppable British Army.
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“James Nelson is a master of his period and the English language…Authenticity runs throughout the book, carrying total conviction…Nelson writes with the eagerness of a young man sailing his first command.”