Auxillary Power to the Catharpings!

I’m reading Master and Commander, by Patrick O’Brian, the first of his Captain Jack Aubrey novels.

I enjoyed the movie a great deal. It’s a solid, enjoyable story about this friendship that happens to be taking place during this grand naval adventure on beautiful sailing ships. There are manly men, doing manly things in a (gentle)manly fashion!

I’m only a couple of chapters into the book, but it’s shaping up to be very similar. What the book can do that the film couldn’t, however, is go into prodigious detail about the workings of the ship. Jack likes to work out complicated navigational equations in his head, and describe the workings of the rigging, and inspect the thing and the other thing which is tied (?) to some piece of wood (?).  I dunno.

I’m actually enjoying it more than the previous sentences would suggest. All the naval lingo is essentially the same as Star Trek technobabble as far as I’m concerned, though I’m working on the assumption that it is all real. It kind of even feels like a Star Trek story, too – Aubrey’s friend Maturin is a research scientist on board a military vessel, and Trek clearly always drew inspiration from naval tradition.

I enjoy technobabble, though, so it’s all cool. Initially I thought the writing style felt a little stiff, but it’s sucked me in. I’m looking forward to some action scenes.

(I don’t know what catharpings are, but I’m sure if you modify them properly you can travel through time.)