Alaric Bond, in his latest novel, Turn A Blind Eye, vividly captures the complex and often contradictory world of a seaside village caught between loyalty, prosperity, treachery and murder. It is 1801, on the coast of Sussex. England is at war with the French and its own countrymen. Commander Griffin, new to the customs service has much to learn. He commands the light but agile revenue cutter Bee in action against the often more heavily gunned French and their local smuggler allies. The even greater danger, however, may be ashore. At least at sea, he has a reasonable idea who is his enemy. Ashore, who can be trusted and who cannot, is not quite so clear.
The local fishermen can earn far more smuggling than they can catching fish. Nevertheless, for the fishing village, it may be a devil’s bargain as the ruthless criminal gang behind the smuggling operation may demand a higher price than the village is willing to pay. For how long with they be able to simply “turn a blind eye?”
More that just nautical adventure, Turn A Blind Eye is a richly nuanced portrait of a fishing village trapped between criminals and the Crown. The novel blends vivid action at sea with gripping intrigue ashore as the young commander battles a ruthless gang of smugglers, while never quite knowing who is friend and who is foe. Turn A Blind Eye is a fascinating tale told by a master storyteller. Highly recommended.
Alaric Bond is the author of the Fighting Sail series of books published by Fireship Press.