Posts Tagged ‘debra mullins’

Today, I’m pleased to present my guest blogger Debra Mullins, talking pirates in honor of her re-release of ONCE A MISTRESS!

Where Have All the Pirates Gone?

By Debra Mullins

When I was a kid, I used to watch the old swashbuckler movies with my dad on Sunday afternoons. We’re talking Errol Flynn, Tyrone Power—heck, even Burt Lancaster as the Crimson Pirate. Something about those wicked men of the sea fascinated me. I loved the swordplay and the adventure and the swinging across the ship on a rope. It set my romantic heart a-flutter!

Today I have a pirate book being re-released in digital format by Samhain’s new Retro Romance line. ONCE A MISTRESS has a new cover, but it was first published back in 1999 and is now out of print. It’s a book that’s close to my heart because it was the first book I ever finished (in seventh grade English class), as well as the first book I ever got published (many years later and after much revision).

Tall, dark and incognito pirate hero? Check.
Beautiful and fiery-yet-innocent heroine? Check.
Sultry Caribbean island? Check.
Evil no-one-can-catch-him pirate villain? Check.
Exciting battles at sea with canon fire and swordfights? Check!
Sensual, hot romance between the pirate hero and his captive? Check, check!

In ONCE A MISTRESS, Diana Covington is the daughter of a wealthy businessman on the island of Jamaica and knows that someday she’ll be married off to some well-to-do guy. But that doesn’t stop her from dreaming. She fantasizes about the pirates she hears talked about in whispers. When she gets kidnapped by the villainous Marcus in a plot to blackmail her father, her girlish fantasies are destroyed by harsh reality.

Our hero is Alex Rawnsley, a half Spanish Englishman who has sworn to bring Marcus to justice for the murder of his brother. In order to catch the uncatchable Marcus, Alex takes on the disguise of the wicked rival pirate El Moreno and tries to scuttle Marcus’s every scheme.

Alex’s vendetta is put on hold when he has to rescue Diana from Marcus. But once he’s got her, he can’t just take her home because Marcus will only kidnap her again. Instead he keeps her on board as captain’s woman, a ruse that starts out as a protection for her and ends up being more than either of them expected.

It’s just so much fun to lock people in a cabin together and see what happens! Especially when one of them is a good, old-fashioned pirate.

You know, not only were the pirates of the old movies dashing swordsmen with compelling reasons why they turned to piracy, they were always silver-tongued devils who could melt the heroine’s knees with the right word. Back in the eighties and early nineties, there were dozens of romances featuring pirate heroes. Then they slowly began to disappear, replaced by cowboys and dukes.

Now, I like a good cowboy and have even written a couple of westerns (being released in February and April of 2012), but those dudes can’t compare with a good pirate. And let’s face it, my smooth-talking captain can take your fancy duke any day. I mean, pirate captains are usually handsome and compelling and very attractive with their air of command. I would also go so far as to say they are willing to break the rules to get what they want. (Remember piracy, by definition, was illegal.) You mean to tell me a man like that doesn’t get your blood pumping?

I think we can all agree that pirates are really hot, and Orlando Bloom and Johnny Depp as pirates certainly held their own with the dashing rogues of old. In fact, I was certain there would be a rash of pirate romance novels after that movie came out! But no.

So where have all the pirates gone? I’ve done my best to take you on a high seas adventure with a really hot sea captain in ONCE A MISTRESS, but there are just so few pirate books any more. Anyone have a theory as to what happened? Is it that romance heroes simply can’t compare with Orlando or Errol or Johnny? What do you think?

I was so crazed last week that while I tweeted, etc., I didn’t get the chance to post my Happy Book Birthday blog for CAT TALES by Faith Hunter and NIGHT OF THE TIGER by Doranna Durgin (well, technically, this one’s a story).  So, I’m going to wish them a happy belated and crow about two other awesome books releasing this week (today and tomorrow, to be exact).

CAT TALES by Faith Hunter (Penguin eSpecial, available everywhere, but some quick links here to, Barnes & Noble and iTunes)

“Four stories from the world of “smart, sexy, ruthless” (New York Times bestselling author Kim Harrison) heroine Jane Yellowrock—plus bonus material!

Explore the world of shape-shifter and vampire hunter Jane Yellowrock in these four stories, collected here for the first time. Meet Jane as she leaves the orphanage she was raised in…and encounters the witch who’ll become her future best friend. Discover the story behind Cajun cop Rick LaFleur’s cat tattoos—and the powerful witch who inked them. And, in the final, all-new story, find out what happened between Jane and Rick seconds after the end of Mercy Blade. Plus, get a never-before-seen index of vampire clans and alliances and a letter from the author about the origins of Jane Yellowrock.

And don’t miss a special excerpt: the first three chapters from the newest Jane Yellowrock novel, Raven Cursed—out January 2012!

NIGHT OF THE TIGER by Doranna Durgin (Nocturne Bite, available at eHarlequin, Barnes & Noble, and elsewhere)

From the moment she sees tiger shifter Scott O’Brien, Marlee Cerrosa can sense his aura of power, his alluring strength, and the gleam of something wildin his eyes. She also feels his returned interest in her—until he learns she’s a prisoner of the Sentinels and an accused traitor.

Marlee expects him to reject her, but instead he asks for her assistance in tracking down a mole in their base. If Marlee can help him, Scott can offer her redemption—and perhaps even a future together….

TRUST IN ME by Beth Cornelison (TKA Distribution, available, Barnes & Noble, etc.)

A hero for the rest of us?

Escaping the cheating fiancé and sheltered life her father has arranged for her, Claire Albritton wants nothing more than to take control of her life and learn to fight her own battles.

Kevin Fuller believes he must rescue damsels in distress and Claire is decidedly out of her element in small town South Carolina. When trouble inevitably finds Claire, Kevin’s white knight protection and heroics are exactly what Claire doesn’t want. But his kisses…that’s another matter.

ONCE A MISTRESS by Debra Mullins (Samhain’s Retro Romance line, available everywhere, including Barnes & Noble,, and Samhain itself)

Her love will capture the ultimate treasure—his heart.

Diana Covington is a dutiful daughter with a boring future all mapped out for her. A shipping fortune and lush Jamaican estate that will someday be hers, a husband of her father’s choice. Romance and Caribbean adventure exist only in her dreams, in which the Black Spaniard, El Moreno, plays a starring role.

Until she is kidnapped by the evil pirate Marcus, and her girlish fantasies quickly turn to nightmares.

Alex Rawnsley’s dark Spanish looks makes him the perfect choice to take on the identity of El Moreno. His mission is to bring Marcus to justice, but his heart thirsts for blood. Vengeance for his brother’s murder is within his grasp when Diana’s kidnapping throws a hitch in his strategy.

Snatching her from Marcus’s clutches is easy enough, but what to do with her now? He cannot return her home lest she be taken again. He has no choice but to keep the distracting, innocent beauty aboard his ship. In his cabin. In his bed. The temptation to make her his own grows stronger by the hour…but opening his heart to love may forever close the door on his quest for revenge.