Perkins created a marvelous character in Bartholomew Hoare, a brilliant naval officer in King George III's navy who could not be promoted to captain of his own ship because his throat was injured in a battle and he could not make himself heard in giving commands. But his work on land impressed his superiors and, with a motley crew and a tiny ship, he is doing important work in counterespionage. Now he is living on land with his new wife and adopted daughter and trying to ferret out a traitor in the high levels of the Admiralty. A high ranking officer is murdered, and Hoare's activities endanger not only him but his wife and daughter. With a painstaking attention to authenticity, Perkins has delighted followers of the late Patrick O'Brien's work. But, unfortunately for us all, he is also the late Wilder Perkins, and this will be the last book of the too-short series.