Monday, 24 January 2011

HISTORICAL FICTION REVIEW: Pirate Devlin 2: The Hunt for White Gold - Mark Keating

Release Date: 20/01/11


Sold by his father for four guineas, Patrick Devlin was working as a servant to Royal Navy Captain John Coxon when he was catpured by pirates. Now, Devlin has himself become one of the most feared pirates in the world - and Coxon his most bitter foe.

But in this thrilling new historical adventure it is not gold that Devlin is chasing, but something even more valuable.

The early 18th Century is obsessed with the flavours of the New World - coffee and chocolate. And only one material enables the kings, queens and rising middle classes of Europe to drink without burning their fingers on the handles of their cups - Chinese porcelain.

In a brilliant conspiracy story reaching from the unknown empires of the East to the restless new colonies of America, a letter has gone missing. In the letter lies the formula for the manufacture of Chinese porcelain, and whoever can find the letter can name his price - and even change the course of history, by enriching the nation that owns the secret.

Valentim Mendes, a Portugese noble who has crossed swords with Devlin before, now seeks to blackmail him into finding the letter. And wherever Devlin goes, his nemesis Coxon is never far behind.


Having loved Marks first novel in the series, The Pirate Devlin, I really couldn’t wait to sail the high seas for further adventures. Whilst this title continues the tale of Patrick, Mark has taken a different angle to keep the reader just as engrossed by further expanding the characters within. It’s beautifully descriptive, the characters are magical and whilst the tale is still full of daring do, Marks creativity gets to take the reader to new heights as his great control of prose and pace really won’t let you put the title down.

Add all this to a great overall arc, enemies both new and old which when backed up with dangerous situations where the author plays for keeps leaves the reader with a tale where you hope that your favourites live. So shiver me timbers me hearties, splice the mainbrace, swash some buckles and prepare to sail the high sea’s with a crew of dangerous vagabonds, adventure is to be had with gold to be treasured…

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