Sunday, July 3, 2011

Review of Pirate Latitudes

Author: Michael Crichton
Published in 2009
Thickness: 312 pages
Read in Dutch
Personal rating: 4 stars

In short

The Caribbean, 1665. Port Royal, Jamaica is a cutthroat town of taverns, grog shops, and bawdy houses. For Captain Charles Hunter, there’s a living to be made, and gold in Spanish hands is gold for the taking.
Word in port is that the galleon El Trinidad is awaiting repairs in a nearby, heavily fortified, harbor. Hunter assembles a crew of ruffians to infiltrate the enemy island and commandeer El Trinidad, along with its fortune in gold. The raid is as perilous as the bloodiest tales of island legend and Hunter will lose more than one man before he even sets foot on foreign shores, where dense jungle and the firepower of Spanish infantry stand between him and the treasure . . .
With all the suspense that readers have come to expect from one of the best-loved authors of all time, Pirate Latitudes is an irresistible adventure of swashbuckling pirates in the New World, a classic story of treasure and betrayal. (

My two cents

Pirate Latitudes was a magnificent novel from an author who has astonished and disappointed me. Having written the superb Jurassic Park and the somewhat too technical Prey, Pirate Latitudes is a novel worth having read at least once.

The story revolves around Hunter, a captain whose main target is aiding the British in their constant and intriguing war with Spain.
When news of a ship filled with gold, being stranded at a notorious spanish colonized island, he immediately takes action to take hold of that ship.
Together with a crew whose diversity is unique and dangerous, he undertakes an adventure none would believe if they retold it safely harboured again.
The Kraken, cannibals, a Spanish warship brought down with too little men to command his own ship.. all things seemingly impossible but yet Hunter's experience brings them back to Port Royal where another surprise is waiting for them.

The novel's strong points is mainly in the easiness in which you can visualise everything. The Port Royal harbour, the Cassandra (Hunter's ship), the battles.
This has a lot to do with the Pirates of the Caribbean movies of the past years but it surely adds another dimension to the novel you wouldn't have otherwise.

I recommend this novel, because of the good story, the fastpaced action and the eye for detail. An actionfilled novel, a great novel for a sunday afternoon in the sun.