Lieutenant John Pearce is in London seeking protection for his friends, the Pelicans, from a reluctant Admiralty. Sitting in the tavern where they were first press ganged, Pearce considers his future. Lacking the evidence of perjury he once had to bring Captain Ralph Barclay to justice, his prospects are not promising. Ralph Barclay’s young wife, Emily, is refusing to live under the same roof as him and she has the means to get her own way: the evidence Pearce believes was lost at sea. Pearce’s companions finally arrive in London just in time to join Pearce in fetching a ship laden with contraband back from France -- an illegal act but very profitable. Are Pearce and his Pelicans sailing into prosperity or danger?
David Donachie was born in Edinburgh in 1944. He has always had an abiding interest in British naval history of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, as well as the clandestine services during the Second World War. He has 51 published novels to his credit. David lives in Deal, the historic English seaport on the border of the English Channel and the North Sea, with his partner, the novelist Sarah Grazebrook.