15 March, 2017

Silver Storm (Rakes & Rebels: The Raveneau Family Book 1) by Cynthia Wright #Review + #Rant



Pages -  341
Publisher -  Boxwood Manor Books
Re-Published -  November 16, 2013
Sold by -  Amazon Digital Services LLC
Genre -  Historical Romance / Revolutionary War Era
Series -  The Raveneau Family
Sexual Content -  3/5
Voice -  3rd P







~ Dashing and dangerous, André Raveneau is the Revolutionary War’s most reckless privateer captain when Devon Lindsay stows away aboard his ship after her Connecticut town has been burned by the British. Raveneau cynically agrees to deliver her to her childhood sweetheart in Virginia but doesn’t count on his own potent attraction to the enchanting, courageous Devon.
Can Raveneau stand by and watch her marry another man? What shocking tactics might he employ to prevent it?
Through high adventure, swashbuckling sea battles, and the colorful history of America’s revolution, the couple struggles against the fiery passion that binds them together.




THE COMMENTARY


First, I'd like to remind everyone that this is a REPRINT of the original novel published back in 1979 by Ballantine

Original -  Ballantine Books, 1979

Then share this bit of 'wisdom' from a PC-brainwashed reviewer who also gave a low-star score for the novel on Amazon:

Edited to Add: Please note that I read a comment below one of the top featured review that the author has revised this book so that it is more acceptable to today's readers which I believe to be very admirable. Once I have the opportunity to re-read the book, I will change my review accordingly.

Acceptable for whom?

Are you including ME in that statement?

Pardon me for NOT being a member of the PC/Feminist Tripe Bandwagon set (since I refuse to let anyone else do the thinking, feeling, JUDGING for me), but what right do you have to inject your narrow-minded view about something written three decades ago, when you probably weren't even born yet?

And auto-assume (as your people like to do) everyone is on board with the idea.

Can you imagine someone rousting Shakespeare from his grave and demanding that he REWRITE his work so that us 21st Century folk can better appreciate it?

How ballzy, unrealistic, unimaginative, and selfish!

And, dear Lord, don't let any of these hyper-sensitive readers get their hands on a Johanna Lindsey novel!

Heavens to Betsy, the trauma they'll suffer!

Just because something is deemed 'unacceptable' today doesn't mean those who lived prior to your uppity snob existence are the devil and need to be burned at the stake.

This may come as a complete and utter shock to you, but not EVERYONE agrees with your narrow-minded, spoon-fed ideals, which, by the way, happened to be foisted upon you at such a young age that you can't help but not know any better (or haven't yet matured to be able to figure it out for yourself).

Just because you and your cohorts have swallowed every bit of garbage, claptrap, and bullshit to come down the pike in the past few decades doesn't mean you are right and everyone else is wrong.

Which is basically what you say and believe any time you over-emphasize the right/wrong about a particular decade's lifestyle or behavior and then dare to assume everyone agrees with you.

NOTHING you've said is original or based on your own set of principals/morals because we all know it is what you learned in school or on some after-school special at home.

It holds zero weight with me because it screams "I can't think for myself! I'm too stupid to realize that nothing stays the same, but it's okay!"

And before I get started on the "Let's Treat Everyone Equally, but Not Anyone Who Doesn't Agree" implications of such thought, I'll move on to my review of the novel in its PC-EDITED form.

And, by PC-Edited, that might be why a few of you reviewers found the story BORING and PREDICTABLE... because, this is what you wanted, right?

How ironic.

You get what you scream for, and then you have the nerve to judge it based on judgmental stereotyping, which you then claim NOT to do.

Huh!

THE SARCASM


I found the story itself to be rather interesting, but yes, also stilted, and probably in every spot where said author was forced to have to re-word things so that today's butt-hurt folk aren't offended.

He's a fricking French pirate, alive and thriving during the American Revolution, for crying out loud!

Yet, I had to read him in the sense that he is so morally and ethically conscious of his every move or utterance that he came off rather mechanical and sometimes even naïve.

Imagine that, a naïve Pirate living and surviving in the 1700's!

He was hot, though.

Sexy, self-made, and respected by everyone who knew and worked with him.

Oh, and by the way, when our 19-yr-old heroine ends up stowing away aboard his ship, guess what?

Only ONE sailor had the nerve to try attacking her for the purpose of fulfilling his animal instincts (that's the right term, isn't it?)

Just one!

And, when Miss Devon slept in the captain's bed every night (yes, that's right... she shared his cabin as a glorified stow-away) the dashing H never touched her... well, not until he received the green light, that is.

Because to do otherwise would incite the jaded PC-Minded reader, right?

Yeesh.

The plot was sometimes difficult to comprehend because of all the above-mentioned BS, but it still caught my fancy and interested me enough to want to read it clean through.

Just wish I had the original copy on hand (maybe for comparison purposes, but more for a good, old-fashioned WOO-HOO in the welcome change department).

So, having to read injected modern day crapola beliefs in an Historical Romance novel rewritten for the self-absorbed crowd made this one a bit dry and sometimes confusing.

The h (Devon) lives with a wacky widow and thinks she's in love with the only other child her age in the town when the Redcoats arrive to turn her world upside down.

The little shoppe her mother owns is ransacked by the soldiers who then grab both women with the intention of (hold your hats, people!) raping them (gasp!)

Luckily, another Redcoat barges in and orders the men to leave and then proceeds to set a torch to the shoppe.

Whew! No rape scenes because that would be bad and ruin the whole story.

Too much reality is bad (even if reality-based TV that is less reality than fiction is hotter than anything else today, so go figure).

After witnessing Benedict Arnold hiding in a nearby forest to watch atop his horse as the Redcoats lay waste to the town, Devon makes her way to the wharf.

One of André Raveneau's sailors charges toward her, terrifying her into thinking she'd made it so far only to meet her end at the hands of another randy man.

The man doesn't attempt to rape her, though ( thank heaven's for that!) and instead sneaks her aboard the captain's ship.

Again, no rhyme or reason to this devise except to say the author was forced to reword her original work in order to appease the lame Today reader.

His intentions were as murky and unjustified as was his presence in the story, but I won't fault the author!

Devon had met André a few years earlier, and he had even stolen a kiss from her, but on board his ship at the height of a fierce battle, he isn't inclined to recall that moment, forcing Devon to sulk for a time.

He's the perfect gentleman as previously mentioned, though he does tend to snub, ignore, and irritate Devon most of the time.

The reader should understand that an APPEASEMENT REWRITE means instead of his being a man and behaving like a true, unvarnished pirate living in the 18th Century (ie: being alpha, exerting himself as a male, and not dillydallying in the feels department) that he instead reacts more like a modern-day college Sophomore, brooding about the fact that jealousy and monogamy go against his grain so he has no choice but to resent Devon's bewitching presence.

A bit of a milquetoast pirate with a great bod and heavenly looks who doesn't actually behave like a real pirate from the 18th Century.

I was also thrown off by the ISLAND scene (which took up a majority of the last 1/4 of the novel).

My mind kept vacillating between the Florida Keys, the Outer Banks of the Carolina's, and even the Bahamas to their being somewhere off the coast of Connecticut?

Virginia?

The weather on this island did not coincide with the weather or time frame of the battle occurring in her Connecticut (Massachusetts? Isn't Concord in Mass?) town, so I remained confused as to where, exactly, the island was that André had plunked Devon down at for about nine months.

I didn't have much issue with Devon's having seafarer blood running through her veins or that she knew a ship about as well as André did.

I especially enjoyed the sea battle scene, where Devon tosses herself in the line of fire in order to help with the wounded pirates.

It was pretty cool and a memorable instance in the story.

What did keep cropping up to bug me was the simple fact that BACK IN THE DAY men just didn't allow women aboard their pirate ships!

It just wasn't done due to things like superstition (they truly believed that a woman aboard any ship spelled disaster for the vessel and its crew), and more basic things like long months at sea and the itch to fornicate growing higher by the day.

Yes, God forbid a man living in the 18th Century (or even today) dare act on his baser instincts when WE 21st Century lot know better!

Devon just needs to remind the men that No means No and voilà!

No worries.

Also, the antagonist's role in this reworked novel flared up for a chapter or three and then anti-climatically faded away.

They all did, really.

The Redcoats barging into the shoppe are thwarted at the right moment, the handsome young pirate charging toward Devon and secretly carrying her aboard the ship (for whatever reason) just died out, and the weird woman and her more weird father living on the island... they, too, rose up in power and then just... well, it just came to a nice, neatly wrapped conclusion.

Which is boring and makes the reader wonder what the point was in their having even been introduced.

Is the author also supposed to fear the PC Reader's not liking the idea of there being any violence against women or children in an Historical Romance?

Bottom Line:

If I hadn't known this was re-written to placate the modern moron reader, I'd probably have written a much better, far more rewarding blog post about the story.

THE OPINION


It IS a good read and is written rather flawless as well.

The author knows the Revolutionary War and probably far more about the time period in the original version than this reworked piece of PCesque nonsense.

At least it makes better sense why I found some of the situations highly unlikely or just plain out-of-context with the rest of the story.

Can't fault the author in that regard but I can blame the modern day reader for insisting on an updated version meant to appease her own shallow, thoughtless inclinations.

The romance does take its time evolving, but it wasn't contrived and made perfect sense that Devon fell for André first, and that André struggled to deny his growing feelings for Devon.

It wasn't difficult for me to understand or figure out that André was likely attracted to Devon right away as well; he just needed more time to accept it is all.

Because the author was forced to emasculate André to the point of his being great to look at and not much else (aside from his being highly respected as a captain), the romance ended up being somewhat lopsided and a little on the predictable side.

I won't fault the author for that either, though.

It's hardly her fault today's world is so messed up that nothing is sacred, nothing is allowed, and nothing can go against the ultra-sensitive's grain (without the same nasty repercussions as would occur had the author been allowed to keep her original story intact for the rest of us to enjoy).

Again with the irony.

The war itself wasn't exploited nor drawn out to any interesting point of fact, and a majority of the story revolves around Devon's struggle to figure out which of the two men she truly loves; her childhood sweetheart or the dashing (1979 version rake turned 21st C Metrosexual Pirate), André.

And, the author stayed with that plot throughout the novel, which is a bonus with me.

If you're interested in reading fairly well-written work of the e-Reader variety (rewritten to soothe and satisfy the butt-hurt generation), I recommend you try this and the other novels in the series:




Rakes & Rebels: The Raveneau Family series:

1 - SILVER STORM (André & Devon)
2 - SMUGGLER'S MOON (Sebastian & Julia)
3 - THE SECRET OF LOVE (Gabriel & Isabella)
4 - SURRENDER THE STARS (Ryan & Lindsay)
~ coming in August, 2017 ~ HIS MAKE-BELIEVE BRIDE (Justin & Mouette)
5 - HIS RECKLESS BARGAIN (Nathan & Adrienne)
6 - TEMPEST (Adam & Cathy)




Rakes & Rebels: The Raveneau Family intertwines 
with Rakes & Rebels: The Beauvisage Family series:

1 - HEART OF FRAGILE STARS: a prequel novella to CAROLINE (Jean-Philippe & Antonia)
2 - CAROLINE (Alec & Caro)
3 - TOUCH THE SUN (Lion & Meagan)
4 - SPRING FIRES (Nicholai & Lisette)
5 - HER DANGEROUS VISCOUNT (Grey & Natalya)


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