It’s rare that I enjoy a sequel to a book that I loved even more than the original, but that was certainly the case with Blacksouls. This book is adventurous and swoony but also has some really important messages and themes as well.
Blacksouls by Nicole Castroman
This is one of those wines that I was so ecstatic to discover, because it really isn’t possible to find a more perfect wine to pair with this book. In honor of both Anne and the real Blackbeard’s ship, I paired Blacksouls with this Queen Anne’s Revenge – Blackbeard’s Red Table Wine. This rich and complex wine perfectly matches the rich and complex story that Castroman has woven throughout these books.
*All wine recommendations are strictly for those of legal drinking age only.*
The Nitty Gritty
- Title: Blacksouls
- Author: Nicole Castroman
- Publisher: Simon Pulse
- Pub Date: April 11, 2017
Nicole Castroman brings the dangerous pirate ports of the Caribbean to life in this vibrant sequel to Blackhearts—the reimagined origin story of history’s most infamous pirate, Blackbeard.
Edward “Teach” Drummond is setting sail to the Caribbean as first mate on the most celebrated merchant ship in the British fleet—until he rebels against his captain. Mutiny is a capital offense and Teach knows it could cost him his life, but he believes it worth the risk in order to save his crew from the attacking Spanish ships.
Sailing on the same blue waters, Anne barely avoids the Spanish attack, making it safely to Nassau. But lawless criminals, corrupt politics, and dangerous intentions fill the crowded streets of this Caribbean port. Soon, Anne discovers that the man entrusted to keep the peace is quite possibly the most treacherous of them all—and he just happens to hold Teach’s fate in his terrifying hands.
Life and death hang in the balance when Teach and Anne are given a dangerous mission. It’s a mission that will test their love, loyalty and devotion, forcing them down a path neither one could have ever imagined.
Blacksouls was an absolute pleasure to read. I fell in love with this series with Blackhearts, but I actually enjoyed this second book even more. Nicole Castroman took everything great that she had going on in Blackhearts and just really took it to the next level.
One thing that I adored about this book, is how it continued the steady progression through Blackbeard’s origin story that Castroman began in Blackhearts. It takes it time, developing his character at just the perfect pace. There hasn’t been just one sudden, devastating event that turned him from merchant’s son to pirate, but a steady progression of plot points that are pushing his character ever closer to the Blackbeard of legend.
I also love the fact that these books are not just about Blackbeard (Teach). They are equally about Anne, who is an incredible character in her own right. She has her own story that is so important and is applicable both to the time period the story is told in and today. Her story really focuses on the themes of discrimination, feminism, and the horrors of slavery.
The romance between Anne and Teach continues to sizzle. I love the dynamic between the two of them. I adore that Anne is so completely herself with him, and their banter is always so much fun to read. Castroman has done a great job continuing the storyline of the romance into book two, so that it is still just as compelling as it was in book one.
This book does have some high-seas adventure, but a lot of the story does still take place on land, this time in Nassau. The way the setting is progressively taking place more and more at sea perfectly reflects the progression of Teach’s character, and I very much enjoyed that.
I loved this book, and I’m so hoping for another installment in this series!
I really like this cover. It is simple, yet stunning. It very much captures the fact that this is a Blackbeard origin story, and I love the combination of the bright blue and the black. I like that it’s similar to the Blackhearts cover, so that they look great side-by-side, but that it’s also different enough to set itself apart.
Teach is SUCH a swoon-worthy character. He is fierce and definitely not the guy you want to cross, but he is also extremely loyal and looks out for his crew. And it’s impossible not to love how in love he is with Anne. Their dynamic together is brilliant, and I really enjoyed that in this book he is starting to recognize that she is no damsel in distress and treats her accordingly.
The Pirate Takeover Tour
Nicole will be making a stop here in Salt Lake City TONIGHT during the Pirate Takeover Tour she’s participating in with Tricia Levenseller, author of the fabulous Daughter of the Pirate King. I’m so excited to get to meet here. Check out their tour schedule below to see if they’ll be stopping by a city near you!
Nicole was lucky enough to come with her very own best friend…she has a twin sister who can read her mind and finish her sentences for her.
At the age of 13, she went to Europe for the first time and it changed her life. She loves learning about different people, languages and cultures and speaks fluent German. She knows enough Spanish to get herself into trouble and can still read the Cyrillic alphabet from when she studied Russian.
She received her B.A. from Brigham Young University and has lived in Germany, Austria and two different places called Georgia. One is the country located on the Black Sea. The other is the state of Georgia where she now lives with her handsome husband and two beautiful children who continue to amaze her.
Are you a fan of Blackhearts? Will you be reading, or have you already read, Blacksouls? Have you ever gotten to meet Nicole before?