The reign of piracy is over in the Caribbean, or so it is believed, until diamonds are discovered in Brazil.
Despite the cover-up, Captain Julias Bertrand hears whispers. The Spanish guardacostas are dumping logbooks, and a new French pirate is on the prowl. Distracted by an avaricious woman he could never love, and the beautiful Kate O'Connell who doesn't need him, he tries to untangle the web of mysterious cargo someone in the New World wants to keep secret.
When Bertrand's pirating past returns with the explosive force of a sweeping broadside, he finds he must sacrifice everything his respectable life has brought him in order to save what matters most.
She wore a floppy straw hat pulled over her slightly scorched nose. Her head bent over a piece of parchment upon which she feverishly scratched, and she didn't hear him creep up behind her.
Kate jumped, knocking over a teacup. Its contents streaked across the tabletop. "Captain Bertrand!" she said in surprise and added, "Good morning." She fumbled for a towel. How vibrant she looked with a plain dress tossed unmindfully over her fairness and hair all askew.
Bertrand, fresh in a white embroidered smock and dark trousers tied at the knees, moved around the table to better observe her. "You have all of your limbs after all."
"Did I appear to be missing some?"
"There for a moment yesterday I was not quite sure."
Kate laughed. "There for a moment yesterday I was not quite sure myself."
Bertrand stood uncomfortably, trying not to appear so with hands clasped behind his back. "Your father is well?"
She turned up her head so that he could see her lovely eyes. "He has seen better days. I believe his heart nearly did him in." A little laugh and he felt her uneasiness.
"Or perhaps it was you that nearly did him in." He did not reproach her further but made a serious face. "You are quite impulsive for such a thoughtful creature."
"Creature? Why is it men believe that word to be both synonymous and complimentary to femininity?" She shifted her hat back precariously.
"Do I really need to explain such a thing to you?"
"Unless you find us frightening, mysterious, or unsightly, then yes."
He almost smiled, but chuckled under his breath instead. "You are the heroine of the hour."
"To whom? Every midshipman and cabin boy in the harbor?"
"Well," he teased, "perhaps it has not reached the Governor."
Kate narrowed her gaze at his attempted spar. "I believe I have been the heroine of the hour with the Governor since our lovely ball."
"Humph!" It came as close to a laugh as he'd ever let Kate hear.
"I suppose I owe you an apology as well," she muttered, "although I'm not sure why. I do know poor Mrs. Fox has merit. Is there anyone else I have forgotten?"
She stared in defiance, which he met straight on, unblinking.
"You owe me nothing," he said with sincerity. "You owe regrets to no one."
Posted by Sally Pink Reviews on 14th Feb 2013
Thorne pens an intriguing tale of pirates, privateers, and Caribbean secrets with "The Privateer." Kate O'Connell is looking to start a new life for herself on the island of San Madrid, but her new life is full of challenges, including the handsome Captain Adair and Captain Bertrand. Who will win her heart?
Set in the early 1700's in the West Indies, Captain Adair is in charge of the British Navy sailing ship, The Indemnity. Captain Julius Bertrand is a privateer in charge of The Specter. It's their job to protect the island from pirates. Bertrand soon discovers there's a plot to acquire great wealth spearheaded by the pirate Moreaux.
Kate O'Connell, a young woman, arrives on San Madrid along with her father who has been commissioned as the island's doctor. At a welcoming party, Kate makes a poor impression by speaking her mind and being honest. The island's society women frown upon her. Adair and Bertrand find themselves intrigued with Kate.
Captain Adair makes an effort to court Kate, but it's Bertrand who has caught Kate's interest, despite the fact he gives his cabin boy a lashing that Kate doesn't approve of. Bertrand shows Kate he cares with little gestures, by sending her a parrot and saving her during a shark attack, but he never vocalizes his feelings.
Both men realize they have to marry, but who will be the one to capture Kate's heart?
The plot does revolve around Kate and Bertrand, but rarely do their paths cross until the end when the pirates attack.
What Thorne does well is bring a rich authenticity to the story which puts the reader right in the scene with the characters. The writing is crisp and the dialogue is as well. The descriptions paint a vivid picture of the setting. Thorne paints island life perfectly from the dangers of a shark attack to day-to-day occurrences.
The supporting cast is a delight – from the dashing Captain Adair, to the boy, McAllister, and to the Spencer ladies who embody the prestige and privilege of the nobility.
Kate is a spunky heroine. She knows her mind and is true to herself. The hurricane tests her courage and will to her limits. Bertrand is more an enigma. He's very methodical and thorough, however there are times he does things the reader doesn't expect.
The story is "sweet" in romance and full of adventure. Overall, "The Privateer" is a swashbuckling tale of the Caribbean full of hope, intrigue, and courage.