With Clive in India. G. A. Henty

With Clive in India.
G. A. Henty.
A. L. Burt, ca. 1900.

Henty is an author much sought-after by homeschoolers. He wrote historical fiction for teenage boys, although the writing style and vocabulary of this book far exceed that of most modern teen writers.

This book takes place in India around 1750, when England and France are battling for control of the country. Clie is the British officer who made many daring attacks against the French and helped turn the tide for the English. Henty, however, does not make him into a superhero, and points out emphatically that Clive’s connivings in one battle were greedy, ungentlemanly, and one of the blackest moments in British military history.

The book flows quite smoothly and is interesting and humorous when describing the fictional adventures of Charlie Marryat (the main character), but becomes bogged down in military detail and jargon when the author describes some of the battles that took place — his laudable concern for historical accuracy hampers the otherwise enjoyable prose. Overall, quite a good book and I would be interested in reading some more by Henty.