This Thing Of Darkness

This Thing Of Darkness This is an epic novel of sea faring adventure set in the th century charting the life of Robert Fitzroy the captain of The Beagle and his passenger Charles Darwin It combines adventrure emotion i

  • Title: This Thing Of Darkness
  • Author: Harry Thompson
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 115
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • This is an epic novel of sea faring adventure set in the 19th century charting the life of Robert Fitzroy, the captain of The Beagle and his passenger Charles Darwin It combines adventrure, emotion, ideas, humour and tragedy as well as illuminating the history of the 19th century Fitzroy, the Christian Tory aristocrat, believed in the sanctity of the individual, but hiThis is an epic novel of sea faring adventure set in the 19th century charting the life of Robert Fitzroy, the captain of The Beagle and his passenger Charles Darwin It combines adventrure, emotion, ideas, humour and tragedy as well as illuminating the history of the 19th century Fitzroy, the Christian Tory aristocrat, believed in the sanctity of the individual, but his beliefs destroyed his career and he committed suicide Darwin, the liberal minor cleric doubts the truth of the Bible and develops his theory of evolution which is brutal and unforgiving in human terms The two friends became bitter enemies as Darwin destroyed everything Fitzroy stood for.

    One thought on “This Thing Of Darkness”

    1. 'This Thing of Darkness' tells the story of Robert FitzRoy, brilliant naval man, father of meteorology and friend of Charles Darwin.This is technically a fictional account of his life, but it really is a novel written around factual sources from FitzRoy's logs, Darwin's writings and other historical data. Thompson has written a magnificent character piece around this historical data.Thompson goes on to write an afterword that outlines exactly how little he embellished the story, in most instance [...]

    2. not a spoiler; a synopsis:I don't care what Anyone says about this book -- it was phenomenal. I read someone's take on the book, noting (negatively) that Charles Darwin doesn't put in an appearance until late in the book, but that's because this book is NOT about Charles Darwin, but rather about Robert FitzRoy, the commander of the HMS Beagle, who took on Charles Darwin as a naturalist and companion. Obviously, it has to deal with Darwin, but the true story is that of FitzRoy's. The book begins [...]

    3. Just finished this book and was so moved I went straight to Wiki to find out about all the characters. When I first took up the book I thought, oh dear, first novel and a biggie at that, hope he doesn't ramble. However, every page was necessary to weave this extraordinary story. The prose was just beautiful (reminded me of Star of the Sea).Such a tragedy that Thompson died the year of its publication at the early age of 45. His first and only novel - I would have looked forward to reading much m [...]

    4. Though I am not part of a nation that ever succeeded in forming an empire, and which, historically, has been a victim more often than an oppressor, I am nevertheless a citizen of modern Europe and reaping the benefits of Western, Christian-rooted civilisation - as well as the privileges my skin colour offers. I mention this because as I read Thompson's book, the overwhelming and recurring emotions were embarrassment and dismay at the destruction white man has brought upon nations of a darker ski [...]

    5. When I finished reading this book, the first statement that made it through my mind was something said by Morgan Freeman's character Detective Somerset by the end of the movie Se7en: 'Ernest Hemingway once wrote, "The world is a fine place and worth fighting for." I agree with the second part.'This book chronicles the adventure of Captain Robert FitzRoy and the crew of HMS Beagle, joined by Charles Darwin later on as the ship's naturalist-cum-village-idiot, as they traversed the Atlantic to the [...]

    6. If I could give it six, seven, eight stars I would.A whopper of a book but an absolutely amazing one. It's Darwin and Robert FitzRoy's life story, immaculately well researched, beautifully written and absolutely on a par with the O'Brian, Barrett and you know God.Very warmly recommended.

    7. Loved it, loved it, loved it!! This is by far my all time favorite book. It's a 10 for sure. It's very accurate and well researched account of Captain Robert Fitzroy and his voyage mapping out the South American coast, on the HMS Beagle. After finding natives he returns to England with them in an effort to civilize them. About a year later, he makes a second voyage returning them believing they can in turn civilize their own, with tragic results. It's on this second trip he commissions a young a [...]

    8. I really enjoyed this book much to my surprise!About Captain Robert Fitzroy, (a man plagued by what would be called today Bipolor disorder )commisioned by the government to navigate and map South America and Tierra del Fuego, He takes along a young naturalist one Charles Darwin. They are on completely opposite sides of an argument. Fitzroy being a commited christian believing that every human and creature on earth has been created by the grace of God, an argument still under discussion by some t [...]

    9. Absolutely brilliant - totally captivating, couldn't put it down! There are so many wonderful aspects to this book: the scene setting of the period it's set in, the moral and religious issues covered, learning more about Darwin and Fitzroy and just the incredible story told. I am fascinated by these clever Victorians who were ahead of their time and pushed the boundaries like no others and faced ridicule from the general public. But at the same time quite disgusted and saddened by the thinking o [...]

    10. I loved this book and thought it well written, very thought-provoking and one that stayed with me for a long time. It shows "everybody's hero" Charles Darwin in quite a different light, in fact, I won't ever hear his name in the future and think, hey he was an all-round good egg - far from it! Thompson is a spell-binding storyteller and Robert FitzRoy's "thing of darkness" certainly struck a chord with me, a fellow sufferer. I didn't want the novel to end, when it did, I felt bereavement, especi [...]

    11. A strange novel, that if entirely fictional you would say was a bit, well, odd. To then find out that the entire core narrative is based on real life transforms this into a book that stays with you.Poor Fitzroy - an extremely talented naval officer, always seeking to do the right thing, while surrounded by shady unscrupulous characters. Darwin of course is the famous one, but he flits in and out if the tale, and it is always to Fitzroy that we return.Not an adventure novel, despite the packaging [...]

    12. WowI didn't just love this book, I lived it. It spoke to me in a very special way, about life, death, love, hope, despair and the inner turmoils and emotions that accompany us through the journeys we make, both physical and metaphorical. This book had everything; action and excitement, science and religion, love and war. I cannot recommend this book enough. It became my companion and I am feeling very lonely now that I have finished it.

    13. It is a shame that Harry Thompson’s untimely death, not long after his one and only novel was published, robbed us of what would undoubtedly have been a phenomenal body of work. However, This Thing of Darkness stands – along with his exceptional status as a comedy producer par excellence, and his insightful journalism – as a wonderful legacy. It is a shame this didn’t make it onto the Man Booker Prize shortlist, as it certainly deserved to do – but then as a first time author he’d ha [...]

    14. An absolutely colossal, astounding, and devastating work. I have a new hero, and his name is Robert FitzRoy.

    15. Whilst the cover of the book would lead you to believe that this is a nautical adventure in the style of Forester's 'Hornblower', the title hints at the real subject of the novel. This is not to say that Harry Thompson does not weave a convincing portrait of life at sea; he does (at least to this layman) and the extensive bibliography at the back hints at a deep scholarship underlying the narrative. Yet it is the 'Thing of Darkness' that pervades the story, as the protagonist FitzRoy struggles w [...]

    16. Majestic. A doorstep of a book that vividly brings to life Robert FitzRoy the Captain of the Beagle and his five year voyage with Charles Darwin to Tierra del Fuego, the Falklands, the Galapagos and beyond. The two men became close during the voyage but differences in their beliefs started as a crack and widened to a chasm. There are some marvellous discussions between the two men on whether the Biblical Flood ever happened and whether species can transmute. The book has two magnificent descript [...]

    17. Fascinating.At times brutal.Well written.Delves deep into Fitzroy's character, his state of mind, his successes and setbacks, his perseverance in the face of ignorance, dirty politics, nepotism and cronyism. An under appreciated steadfast hero.

    18. Brilliant! What an amazing book. 744 pages, all told, but well worth the three weeks it took me to read. What an incredible piece of scholarship and of writing. Bravo!

    19. Questo commento sarà complesso, perché non mi aspettavo che questo libro mi prendesse così tanto e soprattutto che lo facesse nel modo in cui mi ha preso. Spero di riuscire a rendere il senso e la bellezza di questo romanzo, e soprattutto di non essere confusa.Allora, sono arrivata a questo libro su consiglio di una mia amica che come me sta facendo un ciclo di letture a tema “acqua salata: mare e lacrime”, in sostanza: altri titoli che abbiamo letto in parallelo involontariamente sono Il [...]

    20. This book is primarily the story of the life of Robert Fitzroy, Captain of the Beagle, and covers the time directly preceding the second voyage, on which Darwin became a passenger, and the years following, as the significance of the trip played out for all those concerned. I was utterly captivated by this from start to finish. It is well researched, carefully and intelligently written, pacy, exciting, thoughtful, and sad. The tension which arises between Darwin and Fitzroy and their differing pe [...]

    21. This is one of those mind-expanding books that also touch the heart. Meticulously researched and faithful to the characters, it draws a vivid historical picture and transports the reader to another time. I read the book because Darwin features in it, and in the process discovered Fitzroy's important and poignant story. I also reflected critically on my cultural heritage and I hope I am a better person for having read this.Highly recommended for readers interested in science, history and religion [...]

    22. This is a brilliant book, well deserving of having been long-listed for the Booker Prize. 745 pages, yet I hated for it to end. I won't waste time recounting the story but will simply say it makes history come alive and is very hard to put down. I never knew Charles Darwin was such a jerk!

    23. Having just finished This Thing of Darkness by Harry Thompson, I struggled a little with how I felt about the experience of reading it. I certainly learnt something from the reading, I drew parallels with the current day and issues and I found myself emotionally involved with the tragedies and triumphs of the characters described. But did I enjoy it? This Thing of Darkness is the only novel published by Harry Thompson, who passed away from cancer at the far too early age of 45. Previously, he wa [...]

    24. "Hacia los confines del mundo" es un libro que abarca muchas cosas. En casi mil páginas que no aburren en ningún momento tiene lugar para hacerlo.Primero, sería un libro de aventuras en el que el lector acompaña a Robert Fitzpatrick, capitán del Beagle, y a Charles Darwin en sus andanzas alrededor del mundo. Son personajes complejos, así como la relación existente entre ellos.Segundo, es un libro histórico. Tanto Darwin como Fitzpatrick fueron personajes reales y el libro trata de descri [...]

    25. this is a fictional retelling of darwin's voyage on the hms beagle, but also includes the stories of captain fitzgerald, the captain of the ship and good friend of darwin, and other characters they encounter in their voyage. it very much brings to life darwin as a human being, as i had no idea he spent time in argentina as a gaucho, adept with the bolas. more in depth, though, is the story of captain fitzgerald and his lifelong fight with humanity's ills and his belief in a higher being, which i [...]

    26. In depth retelling of the HMS Beagle's main personnel and their adventures that extended into so many lives. Captain Robert FitzRoy, repeatedly dipping into his own fortune to complete a mapping of the region, has not been surpassed until satellite telemetry. The Fugian natives destroyed by they interactions with the alien culture and missionary zeal. Darwin who came to disturb the complacent views with a collection of data and summary he eventually published in his 1859 book 'On the Origin of S [...]

    27. It took me ages to finish this book but not because it wasn't any good. I sometimes had a bit of trouble with the more nautical terms but probably would have in Dutch as well. It was interesting to see Darwin's story from another point of view. I'm not sure I find Darwin himself a nice person, but then Fitzroy was an entirely different man and his view of Darwin must have been influenced by their different opinions. This being said, I'm not sure I'm very fond of Fitzroy either. He had a lot of b [...]

    28. I won't give a full review because I think it's all been said, but what I will mention is that I knew I was going to like this book from reading only the preface. Harry Thompson has a good, solid style which he uses masterfully in this rendering of the Darwin/FitzRoy story. Some have chided the late appearance of Darwin himself, but this is a moot point when considering that the story centers mainly around the ship's captain and his crew. I have read a number of fictional accounts of the Beagle, [...]

    29. Wonderful narrative. Although fiction, it is based on actual events on the five year trip of Charles Darwin and Captain Robert Fitzroy aboard the HMS Beagle. Follow Darwin as he collects evidence and builds up his Evolutionary Theory. Although Darwin is the famous character, the most interesting is, by far, Captain Fitzroy . You can feel the deep psychological conflict that Fitzroy experiences trying to reconcile first, the 19th century politics of the Britsh Navy with his ingrained ethics and s [...]

    30. It's taken me two and a half months but I did it. Because I enjoyed it - it was easy to read and story very interesting just SO long. Someone spoiled the ending for me early on - but then so much happened before I got there, that it didn't matter - what a man - he did so many things in his life. I did find the ending a very short disappointing chapter, but that doesn't detract anything from how good the whole book was. (However - I am relieved that I can now move on and read something else)

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