One of the things I love about reviewing books is when an author contacts me to read their new book. I feel so honored to be asked, considering I don’t do this professionally or for compensation- I do it for fun and enjoyment. So L.J. Surrage contacted me last month and asked if I could read and review The Princess Mutiny, and I said of course! It’s summary didn’t sound like something I would pull off a shelf myself, but I enjoy reading outside my comfort zone.
(Photo Credit: Google Images)
Surrage introduces main character, Her Royal Highness Princess Anastasia Adeline Windell, on the morning of her eighteenth birthday. She’s a tough princess, eager for adventure and the possibility of running the kingdom someday, but she knows that her status as princess won’t let her achieve her dreams. After her father, the king, arranges a marriage to a man who is only motivated by status and power, Anya and her most loyal friend and servant, Stanley, come up with a plan for freedom. Anya is “kidnapped”, and makes a break for freedom on a ship heading to the Caribbean. But then, the trade ship is attacked by Blackbeard himself, and Anya, under disguise as a young man named Theo Wrenne, is the only one who survives.
Soon, she is taken under Blackbeard’s wing and taught the pirate way of life. After years on her own, she commands her own ship, the Mermaid, and has gained notoriety as a fierce pirate, one who shouldn’t be messed with. She’s even made honest friends, Mark and Ben, who know her true identity. Then, most unexpectedly, Anya’s past life catches up to her in Havana. The royal family is in town to discuss trades and make appearances during Carnival, and Anya has to be careful not to blow her identity… but despite her attempts, fate won’t let her hide from her past. So, she has figure out how to fight for her family and her freedom.
(Photo Credit: Google Images)
The Princess Mutiny has a lot going on in it, so as I was reading, I kept notes of the plot points and my opinions of the pros and cons of the story. Overall, I felt that the pros outweighed the cons- and since I like to start with bad news first, I will say that I felt that for a historical fantasy, there were many modern situations and verbiage that was not necessarily appropriate for time period of 1700’s. The Windell family was shown to be a modern family, but I thought they were a touch too modern for that time period. Also, there were quite a few spelling and grammar typos. This made it feel like I was reading a fanfic instead of a novel. However, once I got past those small cons and into the story, I really found myself curious and invested in what was going to happen with Anya. She’s a strong, likable main character, and Surrage’s fantasy world felt like a blend of Downton Abbey meets Pirates of the Caribbean, with a modern twist when it comes to the relationship dynamics. The plot is quick paced and the action scenes are gripping, and the multiple view points help aid in the comprehension of all sides of the drama.
Overall, it was an entertaining and interesting read, and I feel honored and privileged to be asked to read it!