Some might say I have an obsession for pirates. By the looks of my office filled with pirate paraphernalia, skulls, and emptied rum bottles, lots of emptied rum bottles, they might be right. Long before Jack Sparrow and the Black Pearl sailed onto the silver screen, I had a great interest in pirates. From Peter Pan, to the Goonies, to Erroll Flynn, to Russell Crowe’s Master and Commander, and of course, Captain Jack, these tall sea-worthy tales tickled my fancy.
But Hollywood romanticizes pirates. Truth be known, pirates were a nasty, often blood-thirsty lot. However, there was once a pirate, Sam Bellamy, driven to his occupation by one of the most powerful sources of motivation—love.
Bellamy arrived in Cape Cod from England around 1714 where he met a young woman named Maria Hallett. Together they fell madly in love. But he was a penniless sailor and her wealthy family denied him her hand. To win their favor, he set out to seek his fortune by the quickest means – he joined a pirate crew, of course. With a strong will and expertise in his craft, it wasn’t long before Bellamy became one of the most successful pirates of his time. During his reign of terror in the Caribbean, he captured some 50 ships, including a fine slave ship, the Whydah. He chased the Whydah for three days. Without ever shooting his shipboard guns, the Whydah surrendered and Bellamy took the prize for his own. Now laden with riches, Bellamy charted his course north, back to his love, Maria. But as he reached Cape Cod, a terrible storm raged. Just a mere 500 feet from the shores of Cape Cod, the Whydah broke apart, tragically taking nearly all on board, including Bellamy.
Ah, those swashbuckling pirates. Bellamy could easily be the inspiration for a redemptive hero in a romance novel. And who doesn’t love a pirate captain who needs redemption? Are you thinking Captain Jack Sparrow? Yeah, me too.
In A Kiss in the Wind, Captain Blade Tyburn pulls double duty as not only an opportunistic pirate but also as an infamous libertine known far and wide by swooning ladies, jealous husbands, and watchful fathers. Even the mighty fall and he may have met his match in Marisol, a knife-wielding, beautiful thief. Batten down the hatches. There are stormy seas ahead for these two.
Want more? Click here for your copy of A Kiss in the Wind.
Do you have a favorite pirate, either fictional or real? How about a favorite pirate movie? I’d love to hear from you.
Jennifer Bray-Weber hopes to one day live out her life as the island goddess she was meant to be somewhere in the Caribbean. Until then, she lives in her native state of Texas with her real life pillage-and-plunder husband and two spirited daughters. Catch up with her at www.jbrayweber.com.