Posts Tagged ‘pirates’

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?