Title: Death by Water
Author: Alex Jones
Publisher: Skald & Raven Books
My Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
From the Publisher:
James Harkow has his worries—as first mate on the corsair ship Morag Rose, he carries the weight of the crew and a drunkard captain to boot. But when his ship makes port in Rodaley, an unexpected diversion awaits him. A mysterious stranger by the name of Castor captures his eye, then his heart as a single tryst becomes a lasting friendship.
But there’s more to Castor than meets the eye. He pulls Harkow deeper with every kiss, all the while denying the end he knows must come—the true reason he lures his lover out beyond prying eyes to the shore of sea. Torn between his growing love for Harkow and hunger for the soul he must take, Castor risks all to reveal the truth. In that moment, a deal is struck: nine years together as comrades and lovers, before the sea takes the soul it’s owed.
Nine years later, the debt comes due. And if Harkow wants to keep the love he has found in his siren’s arms, he must fight the sea itself
Alex Jones Death by Water is a hauntingly evocative tale of pirates, merfolk, and of legend. A hot and sexy novella, beautifully written and a joy to read.
Jack Harkow is a disillusioned corsair, first mate on the privateer Morag Rose, and serving a drunken brute of a captain. Jack is on shore after a particularly sickening raid when he meets Castor. Jack is intrigued and captivated by the stranger. Hopeful that he has met a kindred spirit Jack agrees to meet Castor planning to suggest an assignation, and after only one night together Jack senses a connection with Castor he can’t explain, he just knows he wants more time with him, time to unravel his secrets, so he persuades Castor to join him on the Morag Rose. Castor however has secrets far deeper than Jack could ever imagine, he is a siren forced to live by taking the souls of men he lures to their deaths. Eventually Jack finds out what Castor is, hears the full terms of the curse that forces Castor to live as he does. The two men hatch a plan to stay together until the sea comes to claim its own. Can they fight the sea and save each other?
I loved this book; it intrigued and captivated me from the moment I read the blurb (and the moment I saw the gorgeous cover), I have a weakness for pirate ships and sea adventures so I was hooked. Even though we know from the beginning that Jack and Caster have 9 years together the story was full of suspense and trepidation, nothing was given away too soon and I couldn’t work out how they got their nine years together until Castor reveals to Jack the story of his race, and the curse that binds them. Right up to the end I was on tender hooks wondering if a happy ending was even possible, and the ending went beyond my imagination.
For a novella of only 29,000 words it had the depth and breadth of a much longer story, I found the writing poetic and descriptive, and the world building vivid and detailed. I felt the relationship between the two men was sensitively and realistically developed and I must admit I had a soft spot for Castor, I felt his confusion, fear and his sadness, he didn’t want to kill, but he did what he had to do to survive. Death by Water was my first book by Alex Jones but it won’t be my last.
I would like to thank Skald & Raven Books and Alex Jones for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
|This post may contain affiliate links.
|Prism Book Alliance® assumes no liability for the ownership of photos or content used in guest posts and interviews. The post author assumes all responsibility and liability for this content.|