RITA Reader Challenge Review

RITA Reader Challenge: Seduced by a Pirate by Eloisa James


Title: Seduced by a Pirate
Author: Eloisa James
Publication Info: Avon 2012
ISBN: 9780062259912
Genre: Historical: European

Book Seduced by a Pirate This RITA® Reader Challenge 2013 review was written by Jess B. This story was nominated for the RITA® in the Romance Novella category.

The summary:     

Sir Griffin Barry leapt out of the bedchamber window at age seventeen after a very disappointing wedding night, drank a bit too much at the pub and woke to find that he'd joined the crew of a pirate ship!

Years later, he has become one of the most feared pirates on the high seas, piloting the Flying Poppy, a ship he named after the wife whom he fondly (if vaguely) remembers.

What happens when a pirate decides to come home to his wife — if she is his wife — given that the marriage was never consummated?

And what happens when that pirate strolls through his front door and is met by… well, that's a surprise!

And here is JessB's review:

I have a love/hate relationship with novellas and Seduced by a Pirate is a perfect example of why.  I love novellas because it is so nice to have a story you can finish in a few hours, a story populated by characters from other beloved books.  For me, novellas are comfortable, short reads to be devoured in a single sitting.  However (here comes the hate part), with the shorter length, it is easy for the author to leave out what I desire most as a romance reader. As a reader I want a story that introduces me to interesting, flawed characters who grow in themselves and in their relationships believably over the course of the story, and love each other for reasons other than that mind blowing sex they always seem to be having.  It is rare for a novella to fully accomplish that and perhaps it is a bit unfair of me to want it.

Seduced by a Pirate is the story of Sir Griffin Barry, a secondary character from James’ The Ugly Duchess.  Griffin was pressed into service on the high seas after fleeing his marital bed with the heroine, Phoebe, fourteen years before.  During that time, Griffin has gotten way more attractive, a face tattoo, and a new career as a privateer.  Phoebe has managed to become even more beautiful than Griffin remembered.  She has also managed to acquire three children even though Griffin ran out on her before consummating the marriage.

The original marriage between the two was arranged by their parents.  They knew so little about each other before that Griffin didn’t even remember Phoebe’s name correctly.  So with that foundation, Griffin comes home to his wife and they have 139 pages to fall madly and believably in love.  And here is what bothered me about this novella.  I understand why they both want to finally consummate the marriage.  They both are attractive people and it has been a long while. 

However, they spend very little time getting to know each other as people before they declare their love.  Griffin likes Phoebe because she is stubborn, cares little for his title, and took in three children while he was gone, consequences be damned.  Phoebe likes Griffin because he is much more manly now than he was when they got married.  When he was seventeen.  These reasons do not seem like the foundation for a long lasting and healthy marriage to me.

While Seduced by a Pirate didn’t live up to my standards as being a truly fantastic romance, I couldn’t help but enjoy it.  The lack of true personal connection between the hero and heroine was annoying but, when I finished the book, I still sighed with contentment and ran off to tell the nearest person about it.  Eloisa James is a master of smart dialogue and interesting premises.  Griffin and Phoebe’s battles were charged with sexual tension and witty language.   The reader has the opportunity to view a touching reunion between Griffin and his father that resolved more emotional issues than were ever faced between Phoebe and Griffin.  I laughed out loud when Griffin discovered his delight in a new occupation in his post-privateer life.  While I do think the other two novellas — Storming the Castle ( A | BN | K | S | ARe | iB ) and Winning the Wallflower ( A | BN | K | S | ARe | iB ) — preceding this one in her fairy tales series are better at the development of the characters and their relationship, Seduced by a Pirate was a pleasant way to spend an afternoon.

This book is available from Goodreads | Amazon | BN | Kobo | iBooks | All Romance eBooks.

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    Christiana M says:

    I recently sought out and read Seduced by a Pirate because I loved The Ugly Duchess and wanted to find out more about what happened to Griffin. My opinion of it is definitely coloured by my sentimentality over TUD.  I wonder how this novella would fare as a stand alone work especially if one has never read Ms James’ work before. I have only read a handful but I feel this is perhaps not her best, although I enjoyed it very much. I agree with your B rating and am now curious to read the other 2 novellas mentioned.

  2. 2
    Miranda says:

    I’m stuck on the cover. I had a shirt very similar to that one (not as low cut) back in the 70’s :)

    My code was about19, I was more about 15, but yeah.

  3. 3

    Don’t know about the novella but I am thrilled to see a historically appropriate shirt with man cleavage. Happy 4th!

  4. 4
    SB Sarah says:

    I love that shirt. The ruffles may be historically accurate but they’re also rocking Liberace style like whoadamn.

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