Imagine a world where sea nymphs exist, mages and dark magic are feared, and pirates roam the high seas. Now pretend you are a young man—hardly more than a boy, really, and stuck tending to customers at the local pub watching the world drift by you as you long for adventure. That is the place where Fletcher finds himself. Taken off the streets after being abandoned and given a warm bed to sleep in and a job that keeps him fed, he has never known more about the big wide world than the stories he hears from the traveling sea merchants and deck hands who come ashore on leave. But in his quiet moments, Fletcher longs for something more and when he is given notice that the kind barkeep can no longer afford to employ or house him, he is given a choice: become a crewman to the bloodiest pirate captain to ever sail the seas or be his captive.
Captain Kellen Flynn has a whore in every port—sometime more than one eager lad to bed–but there is something about the quiet serving boy who keeps to himself at the local bar that has captured his interest. When the young man shows his fiery nature and is nearly run through with a blade by a drunken patron, Kellan can do only one thing: rescue the lad and bring him onboard his ship. Despite his violent reputation, one which was definitely well earned, there is a soft core inside Captain Flynn and Fletcher has burrowed right inside it. What is it about the lad that makes Kellan doubt everything he has once relied upon and could he be the key to unlocking the curse that may mean lifelong despair and entrapment for the young captain?
If you are under any doubt that you are about to read some type of historical fiction novel, think again; this is a swashbuckling romance on the high seas that doesn’t shy away from a bit of violence, a dose of heady, hot sex, and a gorgeously crafted climax to a story that flies off the page and into your imagination. This was pure fantasy from beginning to end and highly entertaining as well. We watch the transformation of a bitter, cold hearted marauding sea captain to a man who will place other’s lives before his own and barely think twice about it. We are also privy to the maturation of a nineteen-year-old boy whose naiveté is tested again and again, as is his moral compass, only to see both strengthened. Along the way, he will fall in love with a man he often fears and yet is certain has a core of goodness inside him. They will adventure together, narrowly escaping death more than once, surviving mutinies, betrayal, and the supernatural. Hard choices will have to be made, but love will ultimately win even though it may mean one of our heroes must fall. Even though death and damnation loom throughout this entire novel, the growing love Fletcher has for Kellan and vice versa takes center stage and shines ever so brightly.
Found at Sea was a marvelous story that kept me on the edge of my seat. With action and adventure, love and betrayal, and a race to beat the curse that hung over Kellan like a shroud, this story swept me up into a journey that shocked the senses and sparked the imagination. Author Jaclyn Osborn has woven a magical tale with an amazing cast of creatures and men that capture your interest and tug at your heart. What an incredible story—one that I highly recommend.