3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 5 September 2005
"Blind Eye" starts with a flashback to the Falklands War. Chris Cameron is 22 and serving in the British Navy as a Harrier pilot. He sees an important target and asks for permission to attack. Permission is denied. Cameron disobeys orders and attacks anyway. It turns out that that was the right thing to do so he's a hero, despite his insubordination.
Twenty years later Chris Cameron is the captain of the British aircraft carrier HMS Indomitable. There's serious trouble brewing in Numala, a former British colony in Africa, now run by a vicious and brutal dictator. The British Foreign Secretary, hoping to score some points in his party's popularity contest, makes an idiotic decision. Against the advice of the top British military staff he sends HMS Indomitable, without her escort fleet, to patrol the "international waters" off the coast of Numala.
This is the background for the very exciting story that develops in "Blind Eye". Captain Cameron and his men (and women) become more and more involved in what is happening in Numala, and more and more outraged by the atrocities that the dictator is preparing. Meanwhile, international opinion turns against the British for their attempt to influence an independent country with "gunboat tactics". The wishy-washy Foreign Secretary orders HMS Indomitable home again.
Will Captain Cameron obey his new orders or follow his conscience?
What should military personnel do when given orders that they know are wrong?
Suffice it to say that "Blind Eye", after a rather slow start, becomes very exciting. A modern aircraft carrier (even a British one, with only one quarter the displacement of the huge American ones) and its complement of aircraft are a very potent fighting machine. The unexpected climax is especially satisfying, considering that at one point it looked like success was not possible for the British.
As an added bonus there's a rather unlikely romance story woven into "Blind Eye". But then, the whole story is rather unrealistic, so why not have a bit of unrealistic romance too?
In summary, an exciting military-style thriller with a thought-provoking story line and some interesting characters thrown in.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 7 October 2007
This tale is an interesting premise raising the question about at what point will British forces refuse to follow political instructions to ignore acts of genocide.
I think this is more likely amongst ground troops than a RN ship. However the story, so far as it goes, is quite enjoyable although rather shallow in detail. It's difficult to accept a Chief of Defence Staff allowing a capital ship into harms way without escorts but for the plot it was the only way to make this plot happen. The ship's captain has record of being a bit of maverick so when he is taken to task for obeying a political order to withdraw, by the woman journalist on board, which will lead to the murder of over a million people a form of mutiny takes place. This is what made the story more fascinating although quite incredible along with the political end.
The book is simply written and makes for a good travel book. Enjoy the tale and park your disbelief in the pending bay for a fun sea story.