The Best Swashbuckler Books Ever!

Books are the doorways to knowledge, the enabling of greater understanding, the point toward a more learned person. And besides all that, they can be just plain fun.

Obviously some people don’t believe that. So a heads up if you are one of those people, this post is all about books.

My mother has told me how when she was younger she would go to the library weekly, borrow stacks of books, read every single one, and do the same next week. I have never been a very fast reader. I would borrow stacks of books and regret that I had to renew them, sometimes twice. But I still read. And read, and read. I loved all kinds of books but especially historical fiction and biographies. Hey, I like true drama. But don’t think I am a boring old nerd, I’ve read a lot more than that and I love a good fairy-tale. Oh, and espionage.

Before I conclude #SwashbucklerMonth I want to talk about a few swashbuckler adventures I have had the privilege to read. Don’t hesitate to chime in and tell me if you have read them or want to.

Treasure Island

I have actually read this one twice. The story is interesting, the scenario intriguing, the language inspiring. I love a good classic. Plus, I really like the steampunk animated version, Treasure Planet.

Captains Courageous

I read this one many years ago and then watched the old film with Spencer Tracy and Freddy Bartholomew. I really liked the “newbie takes a crash course on sailing” kind of plot.

The Spider Catcher

This is one by Gilbert Morris that I read many years ago. It has been too long ago for me to give you a synopsis, but I remember that I really loved how it made you aware of the ship and its workings more than other stories. I would definitely like to read this one again.

Legacy of The King’s Pirate Series

These books were written by MaryLu Tyndall in 2006. I enjoyed the seafaring adventure, but found the romance a bit much. There were many inaccuracies in this series, I felt, and couldn’t help comparing them to the best of all time swashbuckler books —

The Buccaneers Series

This series was written by Linda Chaikin in the mid-90’s and it is the absolute best. I will dedicate the rest of this post to this superb series.

Synopsis of the best books ever!

It is the 1700s and Emerald Harwick has been looked down upon all her life by her father’s wealthy family because of her mother’s lack of breeding. She lives in shame of this and feels she will never attain the families good graces. Instead she falls in love with an indentured servant and plans to run away to marry him. Her only regret in leaving is the work she is doing in the Christian Singing School for slaves. But her plans to get away are abruptly halted as she runs into a murderous relation by the name of Rafael Levasseur, and a viscount disguised as a pirate captain. The viscount, Baret Buckington, happens to be her well-bred cousins fiance who, despite the family’s plans for him, has an agenda more important than marriage at the moment. Having lost his father at sea long ago, his mission is to find him in spite of the common belief that he is dead. Emerald is thrown into his path continually making cousin Lavender jealous and bringing further disdain from the family. What is worse is her father’s uncouth manner in attempting to trick Baret into marrying her instead of Lavender. Emerald must endure pirates, kidnapping, and temptation to lose faith as her life is turned upside down, while Baret risks everything, his title and position, to find his father and get revenge.

There are three books in this series, Port Royal, The Pirate and His Lady, and Jamaican Sunset. I read these many years ago and then read them again more recently. I think it is time to read them again…

The character of Chaikin’s creations is so well woven you never feel as if she left anything out. The romance is well developed, and not overly dwelt upon, which is very important to me. I do not like harlequin romances and so often this is what Christian fiction, especially historical fiction, really adds up to. Dwelling too much on the romance instead of character and plot development creates a mere sensationalistic story and leaves much to be desired.

Historical accuracy is also a big point with me and I have no complaints with it in this series. Not only do the historical events meet well but each persons character fits the periods expectations. I especially like that Emerald has a passion of her own and does not instead put all her hopes on simply marrying well like so many others. She loves doing the Lord’s work among the oppressed slaves and is distraught at the situation regarding slavery in her culture. Her intention to start a school of her own gives her quality beyond the average fiction heroine.

Baret Buckington, also known as Captain Foxworth is, I must admit, every girl’s dream guy. He is dashing but focused, admirable but often infuriating, and the fact that he is a viscount who has run off to the sea really rings with me. (Guess why I like Jane Austen’s Persuasion so much!) His mission to find his father and seek revenge is intriguing and the measures he goes to creates a great deal of tension and excitement.

Then there are other characters with stories for a well rounded plot, like Minette, a French relation of Emerald’s who is even more looked down upon due to her mixed race. Captain Erik Farrows, a friend of Baret’s, Earl Nigel, the controlling authority who thinks he can buy Emerald, and so on.

I was thoroughly pleased to discover these books in my younger days when the passion for pirate stories and sailing ships was especially strong. Having relied more on the classics to quench this interest I was always delighted to find a more modern story that still held some depth.

There is a series of Linda Chaikin’s called Trade Winds that appears to be a sequel series to this one and I am dying to get my hands on them!

So tell me, have you read any of these books? Do you want to? What is your opinion? Let me know in the comments below!

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