Patrick O'Brian, until his death in 2000, was one of our greatest contemporary novelists. He is the author of the acclaimed Aubrey-Maturin tales and the biographer of Joseph Banks and Picasso. He is the author of many other books including Testimonies, and his Collected Short Stories. In 1995 he was the first recipient of the Heywood Hill Prize for a lifetime's contribution to literature. In the same year he was awarded the CBE. In 1997 he received an honorary doctorate of letters from Trinity College, Dublin. He lived for many years in South West France and he died in Dublin in January 2000.
Patrick O'Brian is unquestionably the Homer of the Napoleonic wars.' James Hamilton- Paterson `You are in for the treat of your lives. Thank God for Patrick O'Brian: his genius illuminates the literature of the English language, and lightens the lives of those who read him.' Kevin Myers, Irish Times `In a highly competitive field it goes straight to the top. A real first-rater.' Mary Renault