If you are a fan of historical romances and pirates, this is a good book for you. Two people that never thought they’d find love wound up wanting to only live for each other.
Lianna Whitney has had to learn how to survive on her own. Being orphaned at a young age, Lianna found herself thrown into a life she wasn’t used to. She moved in with her uncle who was a hard, cruel man. He had no soft spots in his heart for his niece. She had to earn her keep working in her uncle’s tavern. This wasn’t a safe place for women. After facing a brutal night with a few of the tavern’s patrons, Lianna learned how to stand up for herself and not show fright around these men.
What she thought was just a normal night dealing with some of the tavern’s drunks resulted in turning her life upside down. A stranger finds her in the tavern and gives her a gold medallion for safekeeping. Once he leaves, the tavern is filled with others searching for the stranger. As she’s trying to get her bearings, she notices two very handsome, well-dressed men. One is very sly and realizes that she has the medallion. They decide to take her with them to keep her and the medallion safe. The stranger didn’t fare too well. She found out he was killed when the soldiers realized he didn’t have the medallion. She doesn’t know why the medallion is so valuable and worth taking people’s lives. All of a sudden Lianna finds herself onboard a pirate ship with Captain Zane Fox and his crew fleeing from the Royal Navy.
She is afraid of being on this pirate ship, but Captain Zane Fox continues to surprise her. He seems to want her to be comfortable and safe on his ship. He has her escorted to guest quarters that were obviously made for a woman. She can’t help the fact that this ‘pirate’ is interesting to her. After being thrown together and forced to spend time with each other, Zane and Lianna find that they have strong feelings for the other. Zane confides to Lianna the secret of The Serpent, the gold medallion which everyone seems to want. He has been employed to deliver the medallion to the Governor. He also wants to make sure Lianna remains safe. They are faced with several obstacles which include a Commodore that will stop at nothing to see Zane dead and a mysterious woman from Zane’s past. Zane had tried to teach this woman how to live a decent life, but Sadie was too overwrought with greed and wanting to find revenge. Unbeknownst to Zane and Lianna, Sadie stole the medallion and is eager to turn it over to the Commodore at a price.
Zane doesn’t think his life is right for Lianna and seems to think that the safest place for Lianna is back at her home. That’s the last place she wants to be. She wants to stay with Zane, but wants to make sure that he feels the same. When he tries to put her on another ship to take her home, she decides to go her own way and try to help Zane find the medallion. This finds her in the arms of the Commodore who is overjoyed at being able to destroy what Zane values most. They have to work together to try to keep each other alive.
The main characters are very well done. Lianna has such a feisty spirit from trying to establish herself in a man’s world. After her past experiences with men, she’s very surprised to find herself surrounded by men and attracted to their captain. At the beginning of the story, she seems to have accepted that her life will continue to consist of her working for her uncle. She would have never guessed that a ‘pirate’ would change her life. Captain Zane Fox has always loved life at sea. The one time he let himself fall in love, he was deceived horribly and has never found love again. That was true until he met Lianna. Even though he tried to hide his feelings, he couldn’t keep them hidden for long.
The secondary characters were also well done. Blade Tyburn who was Zane’s right-hand man was extremely loyal to the captain. They referred to each other as brothers. He was always there when Zane needed him. There were some pirates aboard the ship that had true pirate personalities. All they cared about was what they wanted. A few, Henri and Jason, seemed not to belong on the ship. Contrary to what they tried, they found themselves warming up to Lianna and enjoying her company. Sadie proved herself to be hell-bent on revenge. No matter how much Zane tried to change her mind, she was still adamant about looking out for herself. Commodore Bennington proved a true enemy. He was willing to stop at nothing to destroy Zane Fox.
The era and life onboard the ship was portrayed realistically. Women of Lianna’s status were not favored in Nassau or at the different city’s ports. The women that they came in contact with at the different ports were employed at brothels.
I really liked this book. The characters were very interesting. The chemistry between Zane and Lianna was so real. The story was so descriptive that I could envision life on the ship at sea. Even though they had a destination in mind, obstacles always seemed to arise. I could not stop reading because I had to see if they came out of these situations safe. In that era, the obstacles they came across were very realistic. There were also a few surprises at the end that I didn’t see coming.
Although Lianna Whitney was gently bred, she must now empty slop buckets and fight off randy sailors in a seaport tavern to survive. One night, she unexpectedly comes into possession of a golden medallion. But when the man who left it with her is immediately murdered by soldiers of the Royal Navy, she's afraid to admit she has it. Unsure who to trust, she's caught up in crossfire between navy officers and a pirate captain, who, realizing she possesses the object he's been paid to find, whisks her away to his ship during the fight.
Privateer Captain Zane Fox is not interested in the mystical healing powers the medallion is said to hold, even though the legends claim it can bring a dying man back to life. He only plans to procure the medallion, drop the chit off at the next port where she'll be safe, and collect the money he was promised. However, as they fend off storms at sea and attempt to outrun the Royal Navy, the two are also fighting the attraction they feel for one another. But when they are captured, Zane must choose between recovering the medallion and saving Lianna from the noose. And soon it becomes clear to him that the medallion is not the only treasure worth risking his life for.