Mutiny on Board H.M.S. Bounty, The by William Bligh

The Mutiny on Board H.M.S. Bounty - Audiobook by William Bligh

What brought on the mutiny?

Was it the reportedly harsh leadership of Captain William Bligh, or was he a victim of circumstances and scheming subordinates?

As you might expect, Bligh came out looking pretty unblemished in his travelogue about his experiences in the late 1780s. In fact, he came off sounding a little TOO virtuous, and never provided a satisfactory explanation of why Lieutenant Fletcher Christian and some of the crew decided to set Bligh and a number of others adrift on a small boat in the East Indies, other than the fact that the crew really enjoyed their time in Tahiti (it’s a magical place) and didn’t want to leave.

As for the book itself, it is a very informative account of the Bounty’s journey, starting in England, then passing around the Cape of Good Hope, and finally to the East Indies and Tahiti. After spending a number of months among various native tribes, Bligh and the Bountiful set out for home when the mutiny occurred.

As for entertainment value, this book is a bit of dry reading. Actually, I listened to this on audiobook, but I’m sure the results would have been the same. For someone who sailed halfway around the world, encountered both friendly and hostile natives, lost his ship to a mutiny, and sailed 3,500 nautical miles on a small boat to civilization, Bligh seemingly hadn’t the knack or literary flair to make it sound interesting. Of course, that wasn’t his intent in writing this, but, c’mon, there’s some entertainment value there!