Friday, June 30, 2017

Wallace Boys #1 Skulduggery in the South Atlantic and #2 Sands of the Skeleton Coast

In Wallace Boys #1, Skulduggery in the South Atlantic, Bruce and Nigel Wallace voyage to St. Helena Island to visit their uncle, William Wallace, who is the governor.  Late at night, Bruce spots Stedson Benjamin skulking about near a lifeboat.  Bruce listens and realizes that Benjamin is taking supplies to two stowaways.

Bruce and Nigel learn that the captain is aware of the stowaways, and that officials are hoping to discover what their business is. Upon their arrival on St. Helena Island, the boys keep track of Benjamin and his accomplices.  Later, the boys learn of a plot to take over control of the island, and they hope to thwart it.

This book starts off a bit slow for my taste, but I still found it interesting.  The book becomes more interesting during the later part of the story.

I enjoyed this book.

In Wallace Boys #2, The Sands of the Skeleton Coast, Bruce, Nigel, and their friend, Jimmy, agree to join Barry Jones on a voyage to the Skeleton Coast of Africa.  Barry wants to get a glimpse of the shipwreck of the Dundee Star, a ship that wrecked during World War II with his father on board.

The boys like Barry and agree to join him. During the voyage, the boys begin to suspect that Barry has not told them the real reason for their destination.  Soon, the boys are dismayed to discover that Barry is involved in a scheme with their old enemies, Vronski, Isaacs, and Lambert.

I like that during the voyages in this series, the characters tend not to use electronic devices for navigation.  In the following passage, Barry explains his preference for navigating by using charts and a chronometer.
"Surely you can do all this by computer these days?" asked Nigel.

“Yes, you can.  And I could.  It’s a lot easier but I prefer to find my own way.  In fact, I could use radio direction finding equipment, and by taking readings from various geo-stationary satellites in space I could pin-point my position to within half a hair!  But I feel that these modern ways are all very well and good, but computers and electrical equipment can break down.  And I’ve got no one to mend the stuff out in the middle of the ocean.  So I don’t have any fancy equipment, except for radio, radar and echo sounder; I want to feel that I have done the job; not a lot of electronics!”
This is a very good book.

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