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Avery’s Treasure

Kate Dolan

Average Review Rating Average Rating 8/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : Zumaya Publications LLC

Published : 2007

Copyright : Kate Dolan 2007

ISBN-10 : PB 1-934135-66-6
ISBN-13 : PB 978-1-934135-66-2

Publisher's Write-Up

Pirates don't make good bedfellows. Or do they?

Edward Talbot isn't inclined to accept the global pardon offered to pirates by Nassau's new governor. Being a pirate is the only thing he's ever succeeded at. Fate, however, has other plans, and as one misadventure leads to another, all of them seemingly involved with Arleigh Avery and her putative treasure map, he discovers there may be more to recommend the life of an honest man than he thought.

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Reader Reviews

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Review by Molly Martin (310511) Rating (8/10)

Review by Molly Martin
Rating 8/10
Kate Dolan’s Avery’s Treasure begins with an explosion echoing across the harbour. Edward Talbot yawned as flaming debris was sent soaring into the night sky.

The location is Nassau, early 1700s during the heyday of pirate activity. The English Crown has hesitated in sending a governor to Providence. Pirates have taken the island as their own. Now in an attempt to bring order to the region a Governor has been appointed, a pardon is being extended to the pirates. Some accept the pardon, numerous do not. Out in the harbour the hulk of a vessel set afire by Charles Vane continued to burn at the west harbour entrance.

Pirates had made Providence, Nassau their capital. Talbot was in a bit of a quandary, would he accept the governor’s pardon, or would he do as Vane had done and decline the offer. There was not much time in which to make up his mind, warships in the harbour were a sure signal that time was running out.

Arleigh Avery, heiress to an ill obtained fortune acquired by her father, Henry Avery, now Bridgeman, a former pirate himself who has changed his name Bridgeman and has tried to carve out an unremarkable on the island, has no interest in leaving the island hiding where her father wants her to wait out the present trouble with the crown, pirates and fate.

Waiting on an island filled with nuns is not what the lusty Arleigh has in mind. Out in the harbour a boat from the HMS Rose rides the waves, further at sea is Talbot’s sloop the Osprey. A brigantine belonging to Charles Vane is being readied to sail out of the bay. Arleigh does not have time to waste.

Snatching a single topaz from the trove held in a bag under her father’s bed, dressed in pair of her father’s breeches and with a parchment, her father’s map which she is certain will take her his real treasure, Arleigh is ready to set sail on a pirate ship and try to find the treasure.

What follows is a mesmeric, at times wildly uproarious, description of fiction set in the 19th century. As a rule I’m not fond of historical romance, this one is listed as historical romance, however despite my reservation, I do like historical accounts, and I like pirates.

The romance found in the anecdote is more the notion based upon the old time view of romance and not the modern. The tale while fiction is filled with action, activity and adventure along with a rousing recounting of escapades of two, robust, fully capable women who were not the shrinking violet as portrayed in some writings.

Armed with a purloined jewel, Arleigh disguises herself as a cabin boy, sneaks aboard Captain Vane's pirate ship, and plans to get as close as possible to the location where she thinks the treasure is located. Unbeknownst to Arleigh, her father hires Edward Talbot, failed merchant and pirate, to locate Arleigh and return her home.

The reader follows along as Arleigh Avery, daughter of a pirate now turned respectable plantation owner as she sets out to track down her father's supposed buried treasure. Once that is accomplished she reasons she will have the means to escape the rather lacklustre life she shares with her father.

And the chase is on filled with maps and maps, chases, recurring ship stealing, shipwrecks, and extraordinary partners including a pair of rather untamed young women and a minister and of course Talbot.

Dolan's well researched narrative based on historical characters, including Blackbeard, Captain Vane, and Henry Avery are added to a robust melding of Dolan’s imagination to produce some unexpected pairings, a bit of Treasure Island excitement, entertaining friendship and high adventure. Characters are appealing, credible and engaging. Arleigh, a knowledgeable female recognizes what works best to get what she wants. Dominique, who seems to be less artful after living alone on an island reveals a good bit of vigour and moral fibre as a result of surviving on her own for so long.

Despite their differences, Dominique and Arleigh find themselves entering into a dodgy, albeit compelling friendship which pairs the best or the worst of each. No diffident, virginal approach is found in either.

The male players on the other hand do a good bit of wavering between being callous pirates and men trying to do what is right and best and often resulting in complete mishap, calamity and misadventure.

Avery's Treasure is an exhilarating read filled with escapade, treasure and treasure maps, and hoped for cache of riches, shipwrecks, as well as a cast of intriguing characters many based on writer Dolan’s research into the people, time and era.

I like the use of names recognizable from history; Vane and Avery were actual pirates. A flourishing mingling of history, wittiness, romance, and imaginary tale melded into a not at all formula telling of a saga of the Caribbean and the pirates sailing those waters, keeps the reader turning the page, chuckling at times, and feverishly wondering what will happen next.

Happy to recommend Kate Dolan’s Avery’s Treasure; not for everyone, some reference to sexual activity may put off some readers.
Molly Martin (31st May 2011)

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