Since being illegally press-ganged into joining King George's Navy, John Pearce has overcome numerous adversaries, which have secured him a position of command on board HMS Faron. Having successfully overcome the French at the Siege of Toulon, Pearce and his comrades, the Pelicans, now face the on-going, bloody battle to defend the port. Meanwhile, Lieutenant Pearce's continuing conflict with Captain Ralph Barclay, the man responsible for press-ganging Pearce and his companions into the Navy, intensifies as Barclay faces a court martial for his actions. But with Barclay's superiors, Admiral Lord Hood and Admiral Hotham, in dispute over how to deal with Barclay's misgivings and with his wife, Emily, struggling to cope with his barbarous nature, Barclay's future looks uncertain.Pearce's hope for retribution may occur sooner than he anticipated, but would it be to his advantage? As Pearce confronts assaults from both the French and his superiors, it becomes clear that Pearce and his comrades are part of a large and potentially fatal plan, where war becomes a calculated game to be won.