Review: Pirate Code

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

Pirate Code
by Helen Hollick

Having previously read and reviewed Sea Witch by Helen Hollick, I was looking forward to checking out its sequel, Pirate Code, which seems to begin mere moments after Sea Witch concluded. We immediately join up with the tale’s protagonists, pirate Jesemiah Acorne and his – well, girlfriend I suppose (being as they’re so devoted to one another, girlfriend seems too weak a term. But since she’s married to another, she really can’t be otherwise), the witch Tiola. Tiola and Jesemiah are well occupied dealing with the difficulties of Tiola’s husband, who refuses to grant a divorce – but this distraction is soon eclipsed by the larger issue of England going to war with Spain, followed by Governor Woodes Rogers’ revocation of pirate amnesties for the purpose of pressing all able seamen into service. Continue reading

Review: Sea Witch

Rating: ★★★★☆
Sea Witch
by Helen Hollick

In regards to her pirate novel Sea Witch, author Helen Hollick has only one noteworthy shortcoming – she seems to think she’s in competition with Pirates of the Caribbean. From occasional dialogue remeniscent of Jack Sparrow (was the word “savvy” uttered by a single pirate before Jack?) right down to the cover quote weighing the sexiness of Hollick’s pirate protaganist Jesamiah Acorne against Johnny Depp’s own swashbuckling personification, it’s clear that Ms. Hollick is quite aware of Pirates of the Caribbean’s popularity, and that she hopes her own works might be comparable.

So let me set her mind at ease – no comparison is needed. Regardless of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise’s past and future successes and shortcomings (I’ve indeed made note of both), Sea Witch is a very worthy undertaking of its own, and needs not take back seat to any flick, no matter how trendy. Continue reading