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The New Lieutenant

By Philip McCutchan

The nautical world of 1914 is a dangerous and uncertain place…

With Germany conducting unrestricted naval warfare, no ship is safe. Whether a liner, a cargo ship or passenger ship, the threat from this new and industrialised fighting machine is ever-present.

Shortly after the declaration of war, the liner Orsino comes under fire from the German cruiser Dresden off the Chilean coast.

As Second Officer and navigator, Tom Chatto has to guide the liner through exceptionally tricky uncharted waters of glaciers and rocky shoals behind Cape Horn as they escape to the South Atlantic.

Upon his return to Liverpool, Tom volunteers for war service in the Royal Naval Reserve.

After a period of training at the Whale Island gunnery school in Portsmouth he is appointed Lieutenant RNR and navigating officer of the Q ship Thornton, whose role is to lure German U-boats to the surface and then attack by gunfire.

The Thornton’s sphere of operations is the Mediterranean, and she is soon in the thick of the action, capturing one U-boat, destroying another, and rescuing survivors of a torpedoed British freighter.

Tom eventually finds himself in charge when both the Captain and the First Lieutenant are both killed by enemy gunfire.

Can Tom live up to the monumental task ahead…?

The third in Philip McCutchan’s new series, The New Lieutenant is a story of action and stepping up to the mark when it’s needed most.

Philip McCutchan grew up in the naval atmosphere of Portsmouth Dockyard and developed a lifetime’s interest in the sea. Military history was an early interest of his, resulting in several fiction books about the British Army and its campaigns, especially in the last 150 years. He served throughout WWII in a variety of ships, including the cruiser Vindictive, the ocean boarding vessel Largs, and the escort carrier Ravager, ending the war as a lieutenant, RNVR. He is also the author of Drums Along the Khyber.

 
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