Yankee Privateer

~ 1st Novel in the Lyon Family Series by Andre Norton



Synopsis ~

Fitzhugh Lyon, son of Hugh Lyon second son of the Earl of Starr (the first son being titled Farstarr).  His adventures during the American Revolution.  Young Fitz is pressed into service as a Marine on a Yankee Privateer. Through several sea battles, and imprisonment in England. Even meeting his grandfather, Lord Starr.  How he eventually escapes and joins back with his crew forms this interesting Historical adventure.


Write-up from the front flap of 1955 HC ~

Andre Norton, one of America's best loved and ever popular writers of adventure tales, presents another exciting story of men and deed on the high seas - a thrilling chapter in America's fierce struggle for independence, when boldness and courage reaped bounties for the Yankee privateers and wreaked havoc for the British.
Here is the story of a young nation, filled with the pride of freedom, bringing its war to the very shores of the mother country. This is also the story of Fitzhugh Lyon, young American scion of a powerful English family, who finds himself shanghaied aboard the Retaliation, and is suddenly thrust into the exciting life of a privateeersman; of Captain Crofts, dauntless, courageous master of his ship, sailing fearlessly into the lyons mouth; of Watts, the ship's surgeon, a man of wit and culture among a rough-and-tumble crew; of Lieutenant Ninnes, whose bitter hatred of Fitz make them deadly enemies.
How they crossed the wartime sea, fought for their lives, were captured by the British, and finally engineered a bold and clever escape from Plymouth's notorious Old Mill Prison make for topflight entertainment. 


Write-ups from fans ~

During the Revolutionary War, a young man is pressed into the budding U.S. Navy and learns to enjoy it -- until his ship is defeated by the English and he is imprisoned. But he does manage to escape and rejoin his ship's crew as they make a break from England and obtain another ship. ~ SL


In 1779, Fitzhugh Lyon, sharpshooter, was on his way to join the Army, but was waylaid and forced to serve on an american privateer. Reluctant at first, he adapts to the life of a sub-lieutenant of the marines (sea faring soldiers). He is subjected to storms, battles, capture, escapes and scrapes and nasty relatives. His resourcefullness is tested at every turn in this exciting book. It's hard to put down once you start. ~ PG


Reviews ~

Kirkus Reviews ~ Issue: March 1st, 1955
Picaresque adventure in full regalia with its background the privateers of our infant nation during the American Revolution. Young Fitzhugh Lyon, a poor and embittered relation of a rich Virginia family, is going through Baltimore to join the army when he is by accident shanghaied aboard the Retaliation, an intrepid ship without guns, captained by one Crofts. The mistake has been made by Lieutenant Ninnes, and Crofts, finding it out too late, gives Fitz an officer's berth and a chance, as the battle of men and ships plays itself out. After several successful raids, they are captured and put in Plymouth's Old Mill prison. An ingenious escape is plotted and executed, and Fitz' sojourn in England brings the further satisfaction of a successful outcome to a duel fought with one of his English relatives, before he escapes to France. He finds Captain Crofts again, and a softened and repentant Ninnes and a new ship readying for further adventure. Another good yarn from the author of Star Rangers and At Swords' Points.


Various reviews ~ For more info and other listings see Articles Over the Years

2020 by Judith Tarr


Dedications and Acknowledgements ~

The author wishes to express appreciation for the assistance given by Miss Nellie Snape of Heeley  Hill, Mottram St. Andrew, Cheshire, England, and to Laura and John Harris for the helpful suggestions and source material which they so generously provided.


Bibliography of English Editions ~

  • (1955) Published by World, HC, # HC155, LCCN 55005281, $3.00, 300pg ~ illustrated by Leonard Vosburgh {Gray Cloth Boards}

View the 1983 Copyright renewal app.



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