Piratica by Tanith Lee

After reading this for the seventh time, its still just as good.

PiraticFront Covera begins with Art, a sixteen year old girl trapped in the Angel’s Academy for Youg Maidens, falling down a stairs and remembering her lost past.

She is the daughter of Molly Faith, High Queen of The Seas, the honourable pirate that never kills. Otherwise known as Piratica.

Art escapes the Academy and runs into the dashing, yet depressed Felix Phoenix. She robs him of his fine clothes, leaving him hers that are sooty from escaping up the Academy chimney. Art continues on her way to find her lost crew members, whil Felix wanders the contryside being repeatedly mistaken for the notorious highwayman, Cuckoo Jack.

When Art finds her crew members, she discovers her whole past was false: she was a young actress in a production called Piratica, in which her mother, Molly, starred. Instead of going down with her ship, as Art remembered, Molly was killed by a misfiring cannon being used as a prop on stage. Art finds out the memory of the ship sinking was just the heart-breaking end of the play.

Art is upset at this finding, and swears she can remember docking in dirrerent ports, in different continents. She is upset with her crew, who now act on a tiny vessle, promoting Pirate Coffee. They are sorry sailors, and most of them get extremely sea-sick.

Art board The Pirate Coffee, and sets sail towards the sea with her unhappy actor friends. On the way, she passes Felix, being chased by Police Men, due to the fact he looks like a highwayman. Art grudgingly allows him to board, on the condition that they leave him off at the next port.

Art discovers more of her past is true, and more of her memories are real, then she was told. Fighting against evil and bloodthirsty pirates, she maintains her mothers rule of no killing. As they battle with the notorious Goldie, they struggle to find tresure hidden on a mythycal island.

Everything seems to be going right- they’ve found the tresure, and disarmed Goldie’s crew- when they are caught by the navy. Felix is pardonned as a prisoner (Art never did manage to get him off her ship), but Art and her crew are sentanced to hanging.

On the Navy ship back to England, Art (Now known as Piratica) discovers she had lost more than her treasure- she has also lost Felix. She knows he has a fixation with Goldie, the beautiful pirate who would love to run Art through with her cutlass. She would have like to try to win him back, but now he is aboard a seperate Navy vessle, alongside Art’s.

When they reach England, Goldie pleads and wails, saying she was forced to piracy, and gets pardoned unfairly, while Art, who never killed anyone, is due to hang in three days time.

Tricking her jailor into letting her see her crew, who are in a different cell, she tells them to escape up the chimney like she did, over a year before.

Art does not escape, however.

On the morning of her hanging, Felix, along with the rest of her crew who are disguised, each plan individually that they must save her…

Art realises his fixation with Goldie is only through want of revenge- her father, The Golden Goliath, sunk Felix’s fathers ship, thus placing Felix in a workhouse where he was stuck until recently. Felix tells her he loves her during a speech to save her life, but will it be enough?

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4 thoughts on “Piratica by Tanith Lee

    • Yes, Art is short for Artemisia. Her full name was Art Blastside. She picked this surname up as once she was beside a cannon as it exploded- she was “side blasted”. This resulted in a small portion of her hair being turned orange…I’m not sure exactly how.

    • Just ordered in Piratica II from the library… it should be in in a few weeks! Can’t wait to read it … Art gets married to Felix!

      • Yes! The library just phoned to say they have the book in… I’m going in to collect it in a while!

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