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Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Sunny Days with Helen Hollick

As it is now high summer and everyone is taking time out for holidays at Famous Five Plus we are going to share our web site with some wonderful authors in our special Sunny Days special feature.

Today we welcome, Helen Hollick’s Jesamiah Acorne

Q: What is your favourite summer drink and where would you wish to be
drinking it?

Q: “How’do folks. I am Captain Jesamiah Acorne and I’ve been asked by m’biography writer wench, Helen Hollick, to scribble down a few thoughts for the lovely lady, Mistress Pauline Barclay.
I understand she lives in the Canary Islands – a location I’ve visited often with m’ship, Sea Witch and the scabrous dogs who are m’crew.

So, I believe I ‘ave a question to answer? “What is my favourite summer drink and where would I wish to be drinking it?”
Well, this is probably going t’be very predictable as  I’m a pirate (technically I’m a retired pirate, but can a pirate ever retire I wonder? There is always that temptation of looting just one more treasure chest…) The answer’s got to be rum of course.

Rum is a bi-product of sugarcane, which was grown extensively on many Caribbean islands
in the 17th century. It is said that slaves working on the plantations of Barbados were the first to discover that the molasses could be fermented into alcohol. Distillation concentrated the alcohol, removed impurities and produced the first true rums. I’ve ‘eard it said that, "The chief fuddling they make in the island is Rumbullion, a hot, hellish, terrible liquor."
When first distilled rum’s a white, clear liquid, it gets the dark colour from the wood of the barrels it is stored in, although some rum-distillers now add caramelised sugar to give it a darker look and flavour.
To be ‘onest, I couldn’t give a toss as to ‘ow the stuff’s made. Just give me a bottle an’ ‘ave done with it. Savvy?

Oh, and where would I wish t’be drinkin’ it? Aboard m’ship o’course. Sitting with me feet up in me Captain’s Cabin; a fair breeze is crackling the sails and thrumming through the rigging. Sea Witch is bowling along at a rate of knots. The sky’s blue beyond the stern wind’rs an’ I’m watchin’ our wake cream out behind us in a toss of white-churned foam. I have m’darlin’ wife, Tiola, sittin’ on m’lap. She’s just washed ‘er hair an’ it smells of summer meadows and flowers; it’s soft an’ silky – an’ why the ‘eck am I sittin’ ‘ere drinking rum when there’s a perfectly good bed over there just waitin’ to be romped in…..”

You can read more about Jesamiah Acorne’s adventures in the Sea Witch Voyages:

Voyage One: Sea Witch
Voyage Two: Pirate Code
Voyage Three: Bring It Close
Voyage Four: Ripples In The Sand
… and coming soon Voyage Five: On The Account

Sea Witch


The Time : The Golden Age of Piracy, 1716
The Place : The Pirate Round, from the South African Coast to the sun-drenched
Islands of the Caribbean

Escaping the bullying of his elder half-brother, from the age of fifteen Jesamiah Acorne has been a pirate with only two loves - his ship and his freedom. But his life is to change when he and his crewmates unsuccessfully attack a merchant ship off the coast of South Africa.

He is to meet Tiola Oldstagh an insignificant girl, or so he assumes - until she rescues him from a vicious attack, and almost certain death, by pirate hunters. And then he discovers what she really is; a healer, a midwife - and a white witch. Her name, an anagram of "all that is good." Tiola and Jesamiah become lovers, but the
wealthy Stefan van Overstratten, a Cape Town Dutchman, also wants Tiola as his wife and Jesamiah's jealous brother, Phillipe Mereno, is determined to seek revenge for resentments of the past, a stolen ship and the insult of being cuckolded in his own home.

When the call of the sea and an opportunity to commandeer a beautiful ship - the Sea Witch - is put in Jesamiah's path, he must make a choice between his life as a pirate or his love for Tiola. He wants both, but Mereno and van Overstratten want him dead.
In trouble, imprisoned in the darkness and stench that is the lowest part of his brother's ship, can Tiola with her gift of Craft, and the aid of his loyal crew, save him?

Using all her skills Tiola must conjure up a wind to rescue her lover, but first she must brave the darkness of the ocean depths and confront the supernatural being, Tethys, the Spirit of the Sea, an elemental who will stop at nothing to claim Jesamiah Acorne's soul and bones as a trophy.

Throughout, July and August we will be inviting more fabby guest, so please come back soon!


  1. I love the pics, so atmospheric.

  2. A life on the ocean wave! Tweeted.

  3. with "a fair breeze crackling the sails"!!

  4. Thank you Chris, Serena and Susan - my pirate is a bit of a rogue, but I love him dearly.... most of the time! *laugh*