From the clash of mighty battleships at Jutland in 1916 to the cold splendor of the present-day Arctic, The Darkening Sea is a modern seafaring epic that traces the fortunes of the Martin family throughout nearly seventy years of British maritime history.
James and John Martin see varied action from service on battle-cruisers in the North Sea during the Great War to cargo-passenger ships on the exploited coast of 1930s China; from the war of corvette vs. U-boats in the North Atlantic to the long slog of Pacific Fleet protection in a WWII destroyer. Along the way, they find love, disillusion, and fulfillment. The women in their lives—sisters, wives, and lovers—also have their own ambitions in an ever-changing world.
Captain Richard Martin Woodman retired in 1997 from a 37-year nautical career. Woodman's Nathaniel Drinkwater series is often compared to the work of the late Patrick O'Brian. Woodman is the author of some two dozen nautical novels, as well as several nonfiction books. Unlike many other modern naval historical novelists, such as C.S. Forester or O'Brian, he has served afloat. He went to sea at the age of sixteen as an indentured midshipman and spent eleven years in command. His experience ranges from cargo-liners to ocean weather ships and specialist support vessels to yachts, square-riggers, and trawlers. Said Lloyd's List of his work: "As always, Richard Woodman's story is closely based on actual historical events. All this we have come to expect—and he adds that special ambience of colourful credibility which makes his nautical novels such rattling good reads."