Excerpt from The Pirate's Daughter by Margaret Cezair-Thompson, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Pirate's Daughter

By Margaret Cezair-Thompson

The Pirate's Daughter
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • Hardcover: Oct 2007,
    432 pages.
    Paperback: Aug 2008,
    432 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


“Ida! You don’t hear me callin’ an’ callin’?”

Her mother, Esme, had come outside.

For a moment the mother and the daughter stood and eyed one another.

Esme was a stout black woman whose overweight body moved with surprising grace. She had small Chinese eyes and a saintly expression that concealed how strict a parent she was. Her daughter looked as if she belonged to a different race: fair-skinned with long black hair pulled back from her forehead with a tortoiseshell bandeau. Her dark eyebrows drew attention to large, expressive eyes. It was hard to describe her as anything but beautiful. But Esme, who did not want her to grow up vain and stupid, made little of her daughter’s good looks.

“You out here idlin’ while you father waitin’ for the newspaper?”

Ida had forgotten that this was why she had come outside. She picked up the Daily Gleaner and walked up the paved path between the gate and the trellised veranda. There was a row of conch shells on either side of the path. Her grandmother, who had put them there, said conch shells protected homes from natural disasters. They were pretty. The little garden was pretty too but crowded; her mother worked hard to contain the lush flowers in the small space - bird-of-paradise, heliconia, bougainvillea, and tree-orchids - vibrant things that clawed, latched, and climbed if they were not constantly pruned.

Inside, the house smelled of buttered toast. It was a shining, clean house with furniture that was too large for the rooms. Her mother looked at her and frowned. “Why you let out you hair? Go plait it,” she said and went into the kitchen. Ida’s father was drinking his coffee and listening to the radio. He took the newspaper from her, not seeming the least bit annoyed about having waited. He was a slender, unmuscular man, with deeply tanned skin that sometimes led people to think he was Indian. Like his daughter, he had large, dark eyes, and he had long eyelashes that might have made him look effeminate if he hadn’t had such a wide, square jaw. He was still wearing just his undershirt, and Ida could see the gold Virgin Mary pendant he always wore. “Eh-eh, Ida. Look here,” he said, opening the paper. “Errol Flynn is in Jamaica.” She looked over his shoulder and saw a picture of a man with wavy hair and a sword. She read:

world’s handsomest man is here
Actor Errol Flynn Arrives in Jamaica Unexpectedly

“He’s a big movie star,” her father explained.

Ida had seen only one movie, Tarzan the Ape Man, when someone had donated a projector to Father Reynold’s school down the road. Eli called to Esme back in the kitchen, “You hear that, Esme? Errol Flynn in Jamaica!”



Flynn leaned against the railing of the hotel balcony, letting the sights and sounds of the tropical morning minister to him. The sun warmed his face and the green hills unrolled before him to a bright and tranquil sea.

He was almost forty and looked all right, he thought, in spite of the extra pounds around his waist. Yes, he looked all right but felt like a man who’d reached the end rather than the prime of his life. If only it worked like a sandglass - life, the accumulating years - now would be the time, he thought, to turn the whole thing upside down.

He’d made more than twenty films and was proud of only one, Gentleman Jim. His second marriage was doomed, just as his first had been. He had a son and two daughters he never saw; in fact, he had no idea where they were. And he’d been tried for rape! The statutory rape of two girls he swore he’d never even seen before they appeared in the courtroom. He’d been acquitted on all counts, but the long, highly publicized trial had dragged him through a stench that still lingered. How had he, Errol Leslie Thompson Flynn - son of the respected zoologist Professor Thompson Flynn - gotten himself so deep in the muck? He wouldn’t have known what to do with himself if it hadn’t been for the Zaca, his schooner. Its name was a Samoan word for “peace.”

Excerpted from The Pirate's Daughter byMargaret Cezair-Thompson Copyright © 2007 by Margaret Cezair-Thompson. Excerpted by permission of Unbridled Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Shotgun Lovesongs
    Shotgun Lovesongs
    by Nickolas Butler
    Nickolas Butler's debut novel, Shotgun Lovesongs, follows five life-long friends, now in their mid-...
  • Book Jacket: Gemini
    Gemini
    by Carol Cassella
    How good is Gemini, Carol Cassella's book about a Seattle intensive care physician who becomes ...
  • Book Jacket: The Goldfinch
    The Goldfinch
    by Donna Tartt
    Winner of the 2014 Pulitzer for Fiction.

    Her canvas is vast. To frame a story about art, love and ...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your
horizons.

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
by Gabrielle Zevin

Published Apr. 2014

Join the discussion!

Who Said...

Books are the carriers of civilization

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

P Your O C

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.