Help A Bitch Out

HaBO: Not Sure I Could Read This One

Shanna writes:

I have been looking for a book for a year now, a historical romance I read back in the 90’s.

The book started out with a scene of a very young girl looking for her kitten in the hull of (her father’s?) ship, knowing she was told not to go down there.  She ends up being raped by two crew members.
Then it flashes forward years later, she is the captain of a ship.
Now, she either robbed one of the hero’s ships, or the king/queen sent him to find her, can’t quite remember but then the story follows that he is looking for her “Phantom Ship”, unaware that she is in fact a woman- though I don’t thinks she is disguised.
I know at one point he boards her ship with permission, he wants information from her.

If you can remember this book, I will spread my praises for you far and wide! lol

Thank you for your time!

Shanna (yes, named after that damned book! lol)

I’m not sure if I could read this one, but if her ship is the Black Pearl, I am cheering this heroine on. And I’m cheering on Shanna, who was named after another book I can’t read.



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  1. 1
    MoJo says:

    Shanna (yes, named after that damned book! lol)

    Don’t know the book, but this made me chuckle.

  2. 2
    Tara says:

    Shanna (yes, named after that damned book! lol)

    Don’t know the book, but this made me chuckle.

    It’s an old Woodiwiss. It was the second romance novel I ever read and, I confess, I still have a sentimental fondness for it. The idea of a having your own sexy bondslave to climb in your bedroom window every night just set my overly-hormonal teenage panties on fire. I wonder if I still have a copy of that somewhere….

    As for the HaBO, I got nothin’.

  3. 3
    MoJo says:

    Yes, I know.  It’s my favorite romance novel and I was chuckling because if I’d had my daughter 10 years earlier than I did, her name would probably be Shanna.

  4. 4
    Lovecow2000 says:

    Could this be Julie Garwood’s Guardian Angel?  Female pirate and unsavory secrets abound.

  5. 5
    Beau says:

    Definitely not the Garwood. Garwood’s heroine is never raped. Got nothing otherwise.

  6. 6
    Avocado says:

    It’s no help; I’m very sorry.  I’m about 80% sure that I’ve read the book.  The part with the kitten seems very familiar; I’m less sure about the pirate portion. (Really? I read and discarded a book with a female pirate?)  Still, if I’ve read it, it’s likely to be Regency or historical set in the Regency period, if that’s of any use at all.

  7. 7
    Gennita Low says:

    Hmm.  Anne Bonny by Chloe Gartner.  That’s the only female Pirate of the Carribean I remember.  Old 70s historical romance based on the real Anne Bonny, a Real Piratess ;-).

  8. 8
    Lee says:

    I’ll echo that is definitely not the aforementioned Garwood.  Nor is it the Gartner.  I remember this book exceptionally well, but damned if I can remember the title OR the main character names.  But I do remember the plot and details with crystal clarity.  I know I still have it…  somewhere…  Umm…  Yeah.  I still own every book I’ve ever bought since 1987 with two exceptions and neither were romances.  As much as I read…  Yeah…  That’s a load and a half of books.  I’ve got boxes of them stuffed in the storage building and in closets because I ran out of shelf space years ago in my home library.  Damned if I know where to begin looking for this book in that mess.  I can fill in the plot and highlights, though.  Maybe someone else will remember the title and author with more details.

    The heroine does indeed get raped in the hold of her father’s ship when she wanders into the dark corners looking for her kitten.  Her father owned a business dealing with shipping with his brother, her uncle.  Uncle stayed home in the US, Charleston if I remember correctly, though it could have been another similar city in the south.  Her father was something between a privateer and a pirate, but always was a gentleman and was respected by privateers and pirates alike.  Her mother died when she was a child and she grew up on daddy’s ship.  The rapists were punished.  They were keelhauled and she watched it being done.  They were tossed into a small boat and left adrift to die.  It was presumed they did die.  After that, daddy realized how dangerous life at sea was for daughter dearest, so he sends her to live with his dead wife’s relations.  She attended finishing school in England, learned to be a lady, and spent time with mommy’s relations in the islands in between.  Flash forward and on her last trip to sea before daddy forces her to settle with uncle back in the US her father is killed.  They attempt to take a ship and during the battle, he gets shot.  In swoops a privateer ship to “help” and they win the battle.  The hero tries to take control of it once he sees his old friend is dead and is stunned to find a woman on board and in charge of the crew.  They end up teaming up to take a spanish treasure flotilla before she heads back to Jamaica or some such island to do as daddy wished.  Soon as they dock, she disappears and the hero is stunned to find her later that day happily settled into her mom’s family’s home.  And, of course, the head of that family household is the governor of the island.  I remember he had two kids.  One was a male cousin who finds the heroine irresistible now that she’s all grown up and the other is a slightly younger female by the name of Maddy.  There’s a scene where Maddy buys the heroine a gift to send her off to her uncle’s with when she leaves.  A little box with an enameled image of a ship on it.  Things get sticky between the hero and heroine and she ends up fleeing and leaving her belongings behind in her mad dash to get away from his attentions and demands.  Her stuff gets lost when a black pirate ship takes the ship it was on.  Back home with her uncle, things aren’t so great.  Uncle wants control of her daddy’s interests in the business.  The black pirate ship causes havoc.  The hero shows up just as she realizes she’s pregnant.  Uncle tries to force her into a marriage and she turns to the hero in desperation.  They end up marrying.  Things heat up with this unknown masked pirate and hubby ends up accused of BEING the pirate.  He’s not, but she can’t prove it.  Until she goes browsing in a shop and finds the box cousin Maddy gifted her with that was lost when her stuff was taken by the pirate.  After finding out it came from the warehouse owned by her and uncle, she figures out that he’s been in league with the pirate and is trying to frame her hubby.  Unknown to her, hubby had been looking into trying to catch the pirate to clear himself of suspicion and because he suspected the pirate meant her harm.  He’s in jail and off she goes to confront uncle and arrives just in time to see the pirate shoot her uncle.  Turns out the pirate is one of the men who raped her as a kid and it’s all been a revenge scheme to make her pay.  One of his men killed her daddy and he plans to hold her as his sex toy for a while before selling her to a harem when he gets bored.  An ever helpful servant dishes up the details of the heroine’s proof to the authorities and hubby gets sprung from the pokey just in time to keep rapist from “forcing” her again.  Pirate dude ends up dead, they’re free of the uncle’s schemes, and they live happily ever after.  Only other thing I remember was that the rapist’s last name was Griggs or something close to that. 

    Hope that helps.

  9. 9
    Rhea says:

    Okay, I’ve read this book, I’m almost sure after the detailed synopsis. Except, I’m not sure about the childhood rape… I’m going to say My Lady Vixen by Connie Mason, even though said rape is not in childhood, as far as I can remember.

  10. 10
    Rhea says:

    Oh, and I love all Kathleen E Woodiwiss’ books. She’s been one of my faves from teenage years.

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