Uncharted by Alli TempleUncharted by Alli Temple is a slow burn, friends-to-enemies-to-lovers, pirate fantasy romance.  That’s right, lesbian pirates.  I can probably stop there, but in case you aren’t already one-clicking this delightful book into your library…

If there is one thing Georgina knows, it is that life can change in an instant.  One day you are frolicking with your best friend, the next she is forced to dress like a boy and enlist in the navy, never to be heard from again.  One day, you’re a spy against the corrupt prince Beverly, and the next you’re forcibly engaged to marry him.  And before you recover from that shock, you end up being abducted by pirates.  To make matters worse, the pirates in question just happen to be the crew of the Crimson Siren and the most feared pirate of the realm, Captain Cinder.  Upheaval has become the new norm for Georgina and the chaos has only just begun.

Cinder is everything you expect the most feared pirate in the realm to be.  But, like the waters she terrorizes, she is full of surprises under the surface.  She has made hard choices to survive and thrive in unforgiving times and fate has forced her into making a few more when her newest target, the princess Georgina, turns out to be more than she bargained for.

Speaking of bargains, the evil prince Beverly is furious that his nefarious deals surrounding his bride-to-be have been interfered with and strikes out to get her back.  With the vengeful prince and his royal navy hot on their keel, Cinder and Georgina are going to have to make a few more hard choices if they hope to come out of this in one piece.

Pros And My Favourite Parts

Well blow me down I am a sucker for a good pirate tale, and this book made me timbers shiver.  The pages are teeming with great characters and their engaging arcs, stellar banter and chemistry, nautical action, and even a tentacle or two.  The world is a well constructed fantasy land and is intricately described.  The stifling social rules and oppressive rulers of Redmere, the bloody and grimy lifestyle of pirates, and detailed descriptions of clothing transport you into the realm, an effect that is magnified by the brilliant narration.

Emily Woo Zeller has MAD narrating skills.  She effortlessly swings between different character voices and each are distinct and easily recognizable.  I never felt lost wondering who was speaking at a given moment, and there are a lot of characters.  I also enjoy how she is able to voice characters from all genders clearly and naturally, without over exaggeration.  And, she just excels in conveying the right level of emotion for a scene.  It is an experience to hear her narrate anything that has even an inkling of passion involved.

In addition to the swashbuckling action, there is also a wonderful friends to enemies to lovers romance that endures through some very hard situations.  These experiences are the foundation for character growth and for the overarching theme, the relationship between circumstances and choice that is woven throughout the book.

Cons And Heads Up

In terms of content warnings there are forced marriages, oppressive regimes, attempted assaults, floggings, murders, misogyny and homophobia that occur throughout the book.

I did find the beginning a little slow, but once you get into it, the book is exciting and twisty with the right amount of sensuality and action to make me a happy reader.  Also, I could probably listen to Emily Woo Zellar read my credit card bill and still have a lovely time.

The Conclusion

Michelle's Favourite BooksThere will never be enough lesbian pirate stories for me.  Never!  If you too can’t get enough piratical lesbian hijinks then grab this book and set sail on an action packed voyage of romance and discovery.  Or grab your earbuds and be lured like a sailer to a siren with the audiobook.

Excerpt from Uncharted by Alli Temple

There were many pirates who roamed the seas around Redmere — some former subjects, others from further afield — but Captain Cinder was the fiercest of them all.  On her ship the Crimson Siren, she prowled the ocean, killed men mercilessly, and dragged away their wives to parts unknown.  Her legend was the sort of thing people used to frighten their children into obedience.  Eat your dinner or Captain Cinder will come for you while you’re sleeping.  Listen to your father or he’ll sell you to Captain Cinder.

The prince had called her an abomination to Redmerian morals and made it his mission to hunt her down.  In the last few years since Cinder’s legend had first reached our shores, hundreds of sailors had gone to the bottom of the ocean in pursuit of her.  Still more, both simple fishing vessels and ships loaded for trade had sunk for daring to trespass in her domain.

My best friend, Lou, had been lost at sea eight years ago.  As girls, we’d read stories from books we’d hidden from my tutors, tales of daring pirates who braved storms and wicked kings to find buried treasure.  But Lou’s first voyage had been her last, and for years, the idea of her body trapped at the bottom of the ocean had tormented me.

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Bits and Bobs

ISBN number: 9781777245139

Publisher: Indie author

Audiobook Publisher: Alli Temple

Narrator: Emily Woo Zeller

Alli Temple Online 

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Note: I received a free review copy of Uncharted by Alli Temple. No money was exchanged for this review. When you use our links to buy we get a small commission which supports the running of this site