Monday, November 08, 2010

REVIEW: "The Noble Pirates" by R. L. Jean

If you know the future, would you be able to change it? 
Should you be able to change it? 

Sabrina finds herself treading cool water after a storm hits her party boat near the Bahamas. When she is rescued by brusque, smelly men with funny accents, she's relieved but irritated. She's ready for them to stop playacting so she can get back to where she needs to be. Slowly, she realizes that it's not an act put on by drunken pirate re-enactors, it's the real deal. She's a woman in the wrong time, in the wrong place, and she must figure out how to survive amongst pirates until she can find her way back to 2009.

I must admit, I've never had much of an interest in pirates before. Bloodthirsty, smelly, scurvy-infested thieves who spent ages at sea, looking for unsuspecting prey... it's just never been my thing. Even Captain Sparrow, undeniably an attractive pirate who probably really does bathe in real life, doesn't do much for me. Howel Davis, on the other hand... there's just something about him...

In this well-edited, time-travel, historical, adventure/romance, R. L. Jean  has brought to life some of the most famous pirates of the Golden Age. Sure, they were bloodthirsty and cruel, but the author brings out a very human side to some of these pirates, and manages to spin a tale that was quite difficult to put down. The characters are well-developed, and it was easy to lose yourself in the adventure as you followed Sabrina on her unbelievable journey in history.

Although the idea behind this book was unique enough to appeal to me, I have to admit that, not only are pirates not my thing, historical fiction isn't usually high on my list of favorite genres. But this book did what few other historical novels have done for me; made me interested enough in the main characters to do a little googling. These pirates did exist, and R.L. Jean has given them new life. This book had just the right amount of facts seamlessly woven together with just the right amount of fiction to make the story thoroughly engaging throughout. Although most of the characters spoke in the manner of the 18th century pirates that they were, Sabrina's comments and thoughts were so perfectly modern, it offered a nice balance in the tone and added just the right amount of humor with perfect timing.

It's difficult to find anything I didn't like about this book. I think the only part of the book that dragged a bit for me was towards the end, when Sabrina is listening to Robert, and then she's thinking about the choices that he's made. Those pages seemed to drag a bit for me, but it wasn't long before we were quickly back in the story. I think I normally wouldn't have thought of that section as dragging, except that the rest of the book moved along at such a great pace.

Overall, this was a fantastic story that came together quite nicely with a very satisfying ending. I think the events of the last 5 chapters really clinched the 5 star rating, as it offered a few surprises and left me wanting more, in a good way.

5 /5 stars


Maria said...

With the resurgence of pirates out there these days, it might not have had to use time-travel!!!

GraceKrispy said...

Good point! Yikes! I bet modern-day pirates smell slightly better but their speech patterns aren't as fun!