My guest today is the beautiful Shana Galen. And I mean that literally. Just look at her! I’ve met Shana and can attest that the pic below is not doctored. LOL! Best of all, Shana is as lovely inside as out. Shana came to Sourcebooks a year or so after me, and we have been acquaintances since. It is my great pleasure to welcome Shana Galen here today. She will be talking about pirates and what makes them (or doesn’t make them) “bad guys” – Ooh! Read on and be sure to comment because Shana is including a giveaway!
Shana Galen is the bestselling author of fast-paced adventurous Regency historicals, including the RT Reviewers’ Choice The Making of a Gentleman. Booklist says, “Galen expertly entwines espionage-flavored intrigue with sizzling passion,” and RT Bookreviews calls her “a grand mistress of the action/adventure subgenre.” She taught English at the middle and high school level off and on for eleven years. Most of those years were spent working in Houston’s inner city. Now she writes full time. She’s happily married and has a daughter who is most definitely a romance heroine in the making. Shana loves to hear from readers, so send her an email or see what she’s up to daily on Facebook and Twitter @shanagalen
Who’s The Bad Guy? by Shana Galen
Recently a friend of mine took her kids to see a pirate exhibit, and one of her young children said, “So were pirates the bad guys?” I can see why the kid is confused. Captain Hook is a pirate, and he’s bad. But what about Jake and his mates on the Disney Junior show Jake and The Neverland Pirates? What about Captain Jack Sparrow? Aren’t we supposed to root for him? And yet, the history books are filled with tales of the death and destruction pirates wrought. So my friend looked at me and said, “You write books with pirates. What should I say? Who’s the bad guy?”
I don’t know that I had the right answer for her. Pirates in the nineteenth century were definitely the bad guys. They sank ships, they took slaves, they killed indiscriminately, and they stole property that wasn’t theirs. Of course, in the nineteenth century, life in the navy wasn’t all that great either. Sailors lived under conditions that were always harsh and often abusive. The democratic nature of a pirate ship must have been appealing to at least some sailors. Pirates now—be they ebook pirates or Somali pirates—are also the bad guys. I’d have to say, in real life, pirates are usually the bad guys. In fiction? Not so much.
I don’t know about you, but I love a book with a bad by hero. That’s where the pirate comes in. In the nineteenth century, he’s the ultimate bad boy. He might not have a motorcycle, but hey, he has a whole ship and crew to command. There’s usually a reason a hero in a book has resorted to life as a bad boy pirate. That’s Nick Martingale’s story. He’s the pirate hero in The Pirate Takes a Bride. He’s vowed revenge on the Barbary pirate Yussef (Barbary pirates were the corsairs who terrorized the Mediterranean) for the terrible wrongs Yussef has done to Nick’s family and friends. Nick cares little that his quest for vengeance puts his own life at risk. He wants revenge at any cost.
Until he becomes involved with Ashley.
Ashley doesn’t particularly like Nick. Months ago, he took her virtue then snubbed her. Through a series of unfortunate events, Nick and Ashley are accidentally married by an anvil priest in Gretna Green. The funny thing is that this accidental marriage is historically accurate. A drunk anvil priest really did mistakenly marry the wrong couples. That’s Nick and Ashley’s fate, and they’re stuck together as a result. Even though he’s an awful pirate, Nick can’t abandon Ashley when his pirate crew comes to fetch him. It’s a life or death matter, and he has to leave immediately, so he takes Ashley with him. He’s obviously in possession of some honor, and that’s one mark in the Good Guy column.
As Ashley learns more about Nick, he racks up more points in the Good Guy column until she falls in love with him. He might be in love with her too, but remember he also wanted to have his revenge, and he’d sacrificed everything to have it. I’ll let you read the book to see what happens, but I believe at the end, you’ll place Nick firmly in the Good Guy column. Or at least as good as a bad boy pirate can get.
So what about you? Do you love a bad boy hero?
The Pirate Takes a Bride by Shana Galen~~
Ashley Brittany is living a nightmare. She’s been mistakenly married to the one man she despises. Months ago, Lord Nicholas took her virtue then scorned her. Now, Ashley will do anything to have her revenge…anything but expose her ugly secret.
Nick Martingale has a secret, too: he’s Captain Robin Hood, a pirate with a fearsome reputation. But when Nick learns his archenemy, the Barbary pirate Yussef, attacked innocents Nick has sworn to protect, he can think of nothing but vengeance.
Only one person stands in his way.
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Shana has graciously offered to giveaway one print copy of The Pirate Takes a Bride. Just comment on this post, answering Shana’s question about bad boy heroes before the deadline on Sunday, June 22 at midnight. Winners will be contacted. *Us/Canada only, please.
Some of Shana’s novels~~