A creatively crafted story based on a little-known but captivating part of the past.
By Nicholas Kinsey ‧ RELEASE DATE: May 24, 2023
Kinsey’s historical novel tells the story of a notorious 17th-century kidnapping on Ireland’s south coast. The novel follows the 1631 Barbary Coast corsairs’ invasion of the Irish coast, in which they set fire to the village of Baltimore and kidnap nearly all the inhabitants. The corsairs then embark on a monthlong voyage to Algiers, dodging the French and Spanish navies, to sell their human cargo into slavery. The corsair captain, Murad Reis, is a Dutchman who has converted to Islam and his character develops as the story progresses. The journey to Algiers is full of danger and there are even some murders to solve. Upon arriving in Algiers, a city that rivals the most beautiful places in Europe, the captives are separated and some mothers never see their children again. Religion is a major theme in the novel, with many Calvinists converting to Islam to get better treatment. The author focuses on a few characters and creates interesting fates for them. Capt. Murad leaves Algiers to go on more plundering adventures, but returns two years later to free Felix Gunter and his brother Caleb Gunter from slavery. Ciara, a beautiful Irish maid, is initially optimistic about her fate, but soon realizes that harem life is not for her. The novel also explores the role of religion in the village of Baltimore’s fate, as it was sealed by local Irish Catholics who hated the English Calvinist interlopers. Sea battles and weapons and tactics provide action and interest for readers of pre-20th-century history. The novel also questions religious beliefs and mankind’s true identity under heaven. But it is ultimately the characters and their vices and virtues that capture the reader’s attention.
Pub Date: May 24, 2023
Page Count: 374
Publisher: Cinegrafica Films & Publishing Inc
Review Posted Online: June 26, 2023