Talk Like a Pirate Monday

I was reading over the posts from the last few days, all the great discussion on Jane Eyre, historic castles, and The Green Fairy Book, and I couldn’t decide what today’s post should be about. Something erudite and cultured? Literary, historical? Nah–it’s officially Talk Like a Pirate Day! Arggh, maties!

OK, so I’m getting silly, I know. Maybe my brain is baked from trying to finish my WIP on time and thus have my editor still like me. But the first “real historical romance” I ever read (and by that I mean not a Cartland, a Heyer, or a trad Regency) was Virginia Henley’s The Hawk and the Dove. This was more years ago than I care to remember, I was in the eighth or ninth grade at the time, but I still remember how great I thought this book was. The heroine (the fabulously-named Sabre Wilde) has come to the court of Elizabeth I to get revenge on her long-lost husband, the also wonderfully-named Captain Shane Hawkhurst, also known as The Sea God. He is (you guessed it!) a pirate (or maybe a privateer–whatever, it’s all good), and she has long, red hair and is very “feisty,” which means she pitches fits all over the place and causes big scenes. She also wears terrific clothes. It was an immensely fun book, and it set me on a pirate-story jag that lasted for many months. I still enjoy the occasional high-seas adventure (especially when it gives me the chance to indulge my Orlando Bloom obsession a bit!), even though good pirate books are a little harder to find these days. Here’s a list of titles I liked, and I’d love to hear suggestions from everyone else. 🙂

Marsha Canham’s The Iron Rose (an absolutely splendid book, where the heroine is the pirate–I loved this one. The prequel, about the heroine’s parents, was also great–Across a Moonlit Sea)
Jennifer Ashley’s The Pirate Next Door (a great, humorous look at Regency-era piracy)
Meagan McKinney’s Til Dawn Tames the Night (another early historical read of mine–pretty steamy! The hero also has a fab tattoo)
Sabrina Jeffries’ The Pirate Lord
Amanda Quick’s Deception
Lisa Cach’s The Wildest Shore
Gaelen Foley’s The Pirate Prince
Heyer’s Beauvallet (maybe stretching it a bit? But I had to include it!)

For more info on this great holiday, check out Check it out, or walk the plank!

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Cara King
17 years ago

Argh! Avast ye, matey!


Janet Mullany
17 years ago

You know, I remember reading somewhere that most pirates were gay–the male bonding thing.

Sabre??? Hawkhurst, The Sea God???? Oh, I wish I had the nerve to give my characters names like that. Talk about a good, guilty, self-indulgent read…

Brings back memories of when I made my husband a halloween pirate costume, actually just the accessories, out of cardboard. His parrot had an extension so it could be wedged into his shirt pocket.


Laurie Bishop
17 years ago


Well, I’m glad you told me it was Talk Like A Pirate Day. I would have missed it entirely. It would have been a little hard to carry off in the doctor’s office I visited today, though!

I admit sadly that I have scarcely read a pirate book at all…darn. I think a couple of very early historicals (back when they really
were bodice rippers) I was put off by them. You probably remember–when the hero was borderline psycho and the heroine kept coming back for more?!! So…I am going to have to copy your list of titles now and look them up!


17 years ago

I must admit, I’ve not read too many pirate novels, though I did read “Pirate Blood” by Edgar Rice Burroughs many years ago. I did enjoy the recent “Pirates of the Carribean,” though, and I freely admit that my wife and I were among the seven or eight people who actually saw (and enjoyed) “Cutthroat Island.”


Amanda McCabe
17 years ago


Yes, The Hawk and the Dove is a definite bodice-ripper, but what made it so fun was that the heroine was just as psychotic and crazy as the hero. I have little patience for the typical ’80s 50-year-old hero rapes 16-year-old heroine and they supposedly live HEA. 🙂 Most of the pirate books I have picked up lately have either been humorous (like the Ashley) and thus lots of fun, or just a big, rip-roaring saga like the Canham, with the kick-ass heroine. I sometimes wish I could come up with stuff like that.

I can’t wait for the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie next summer! And I must find one of those parrots…

Megan Frampton
17 years ago

I have a friend who just finished working on Pirates of the Caribbean II (he’s a stuntman). I’ll see if he’s got any dish on it.

Amanda McCabe
17 years ago

Ah, an inside connection! I want to hear details, Megan. 🙂

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