1) Wow - what a fabulous novel. I knew I would like this, being a secret naval fan, and I was not disappointed. A novel that races along with pace and verve with a plot that twists and turns. You can't second guess Ms Hollick.
Jesemiah is a pirate and this is the story of him. He is larger than life, bright and vivid with a touch of the Richard Sharpe about him, a maverick who gains respect from those who matter. This first book in a series explains who he is and why he is, and what he does about it. As much as he mixes with a group of men who fill the hearts of others with fear, the person who is the most vile, twisted and evil is not a pirate, but a well-respected gentleman.
Ms Hollick has done her research, real personages and real pirates people her pages, though Jesemiah steals every scene he is in. The detail and knowledge of the ships she writes about is fantastic, as good as C.S.Forester and O'Brien. The ships come alive in her hands and as a reader you are waiting for the arrival of Sea Witch - the Lone Ranger has Silver, Dick Turpin has Black Bess, Jack Sparrow has the Black Pearl and Jesemiah Acorne, with an 'e', has Sea Witch.
A fantastic read that will grip you and leave you wanting more. And thankfully Ms Hollick has provided it.
2) Wow! What a story. I wasn’t really sure what to expect, I have a maritime background and have often found the technical stuff in other ‘sea’ stories to be incorrect, which can grate and spoil the experience for me, but here it was spot on.
And the witchcraft elements fitted in perfectly, they gave an interesting twist to the tale and felt like they belonged in the setting. The whole thing flowed and got me reading faster and faster. Historical fiction was not really my thing, I never liked history as a subject but this story is alive and exciting, I’m glad I found it. Now I will have to read the next one, I need to know what happens.
3) 'Sea Witch' punches above its weight, with the central character Jesamiah Acorne taking part in scrap after scrap, taking on a bigger ship to start with (ambitious if nothing else), landing in the condemned cell for piracy and then being wrecked off Lousiana... The counterpane is a young Cornish girl developing skills in witchcraft... The background is the sea 'goddess' Tethys, waking from time to time and stretching her limbs to create storms that test Jesamiah's skills at seamanship.
'Pirates of the Caribbean'? Sissy stuff, this is the genuine article, heir to 'Treasure Island'.
4) I have just finished the enthralling novel, 'Sea Witch' by the talented Helen Hollick. This is the first in the Jesamiah Acorne series and I am looking forward to the next, 'Pirate Code'. I can still taste the salt, feel the rain and sea spray on my face, smell the wind and hear the waves crashing on the barnacled hull. This is a fictional swashbuckling adventure of the first order with the perfect mix of history and fantasy. Her literary style takes you back to a time and place of pirates, rogues and legend. Her descriptive passages engage every sense. The story and characters are vibrant and alive. We are taken on a rip roaring ride of excitement, love, lust and revenge. If you love The Pirates of the Caribbean, you will love this book, which I wholeheartedly recommend.
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