The First to Land

By Douglas Reeman

A novel from the bestselling grasp storyteller of the sea.
     1899, China. The Mandarins have gotten complicated back and there are rumors that assaults will quickly start on British alternate missions and legations. Captain David Blackwood of the Royal Marines, acquired a VC within the bloody conflict for Benin, Africa yet is now being packed off to this obvious backwater.

     But there are many problems in shop for Blackwood within the form of an errant nephew and a gorgeous German Countess who insists he in my opinion escort her up river on a small steamer into the center of the rustic. China is a napping tiger that might quickly unsleeping while the Boxer uprising erupts into bloody battle in 1900. precise to their motto, the Royal marines are the 1st to land -- and the final to leave.

     This is the second one novel within the Blackwood saga, spanning a hundred and fifty years within the historical past of a good seafaring family members and the culture during which they served.

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Sergeant Greenaway kicked the weapon apart and taken his bayonet down in a immediately lunge. ‘No you don’t, matey. ’ He stumbled on Gravatt and Ralf within the centre of the road staring after the chickening out enemy. Gravatt acknowledged, ‘They’ll be again. ’ He observed Blackwood. ‘I heard approximately Ian, sir. undesirable success. ’ They checked out one another. It used to be constantly the way in which. anyone of them might have been killed. because it was once that they had rarely misplaced a guy. bad Bannatyre and personal Carver. And now Kirby who had acted like a lion correct to the tip. Had he been delirious, or did he relatively homicide his spouse? Blackwood stumbled on he didn't care. Kirby had proven extraordinary braveness. as though, just like the time at the river, he had desired to die. yet who may ever be aware of for yes? Even fewer could care. Gravatt watched his face and acknowledged, ‘I wonder whether Colonel Hay’s messenger acquired in the course of the chinese language strains, sir. ’ Blackwood winced because the cannon fired back, then ducked as a shell exploded at the most sensible of a close-by development. the place O’Neil and his machine-gun could were. probably the Boxers didn't know it were moved. no longer but. He acknowledged, ‘I imagine we need to imagine he didn’t get via, Toby. So till a reduction does achieve us we needs to carry on. ’ He stared bitterly on the dirt above the enemy camp. ‘But for that damned gun –’ Ralf acknowledged, ‘Is there no method of destroying it, or knocking it out of motion? ’ Blackwood studied him thoughtfully. Ralf had definitely replaced seeing that he had carried the injured inner most Adams to safeguard. ‘Impossible. ’ He observed the shutter drop immediately at the back of Ralf’s opaque stare. He additional, ‘The gun may be within the centre in their camp. there are millions of the enemy in the market, evening or day. it might be suicide. ’ He observed Swan leaning on his rifle, his eyes closed as though he used to be asleep on his ft. ‘But I trust you, Ralf. It’s the one manner. ’ They ducked back as one other explosion made the floor leap underneath them and pebbles and damaged beams have been flung into the air virtually the place the former shell had landed. ‘Ten mins among each one shot or close to adequate. they have to be apprehensive we’ll produce a few artillery of our personal and blow up their ammunition shop. ’ Gravatt grimaced. ‘Some hopes. ’ Blackwood attempted to not degree their restrict of lifestyles. extra days? on the so much. yet now not with the shells crashing down each jiffy. It appeared most probably that no matter if the Boxers didn't assault at evening, they'd sustain a bombardment round the clock. Then even leisure will be denied to his males. He attempted to imagine it out, yet his head used to be aching unmercifully. Gravatt decreased his binoculars. ‘They don’t glance as though they’re going to assault for some time, sir. ’ ‘No. They’ll try and melt us with shellfire first. ’ He checked out the scattered corpses, a few already gruesome within the powerful sun. ‘Have that lot cleared clear of our traces, Toby. issues are undesirable sufficient with no the stench. ’ Gravatt nodded. ‘I’ll get Ian Bannatyre to –’ Their eyes met and he left the remainder unsaid. It was once frequently most unlikely to simply accept the lack of a guy in any such close-knit physique.

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