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Daphne Du Maurier, best known for the suspenseful romance classic Rebecca, also had a thing for pirates. This historical romance matches a lovely genteel lady from the fashionable world with a dashing pirate who terrorizes the Cornish coat. Lady Dona St. Columb is bored and jaded by the numbingly polite society of Restoration London. She flees her life of luxury and ease and rides to her husband’s remote Cornish estate, where a chance encounter with the pirate Jean-Benoit Aubéry changes her life. Aubéry may be a pirate, but he’s also an educated, cultured, thoughtful man of action. The mix of philosopher and pirate is too much for Dona to resist; she falls head over heels in love with Aubéry and runs away with him. Dona may be done with high society, but high society won’t let her go that easily. Pursued by her husband and other “gentlemen,” Dona and Aubéry have to face some intense obstacles that stand in the way of their romantic, adventurous life together. This may seem like a swashbuckling bodice-ripper, and it’s certainly an ancestor of those types of romances, but there’s more to Frenchman’s Creek than just love and adventure. The writing style is literary even when the characters are romanticized, and the real journey here is Dona’s path to self-discovery. Still, dating a pirate is the ultimate way to rebel, and Frenchman’s Creek will satisfy readers who love the romantic appeal of pirate life best.
posted Feb 26, 2010 at 2:56PM
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