The Pirate’s Daughter, Margaret Cezair-Thompson

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“Back in America, little was known of my life in Jamaica,” wrote Errol Flynn

I had the privilege of meeting and cruising with the Manic Mommies back in November. One of the lovely mommies, Kim Erskine, organized an on-ship book club and we all met up in the library one afternoon to chat about The Pirate’s Daughter. It was the perfect backdrop to talk about a book set in the tropics. The conversation was thought-provoking and as with most book clubs, impressions were introduced that weren’t previously considered. Some of the questions our group had about the book went unanswered, so it was wonderful to pose them directly to the woman who penned the words. I contacted The Pirate’s Daughter author, Margaret Cezair-Thompson and asked her to speak with me about her book.

Listen in as Margaret speaks so eloquently about her book and the Caribbean island nation she adores so much. She is a gifted storyteller and simply a delightful person.

PirateThen, join the conversation & be entered to win a FREE copy of The Pirate’s Daughter by:

  • Leaving a comment below and/or

  • Calling 206-309-7318 and sharing your impressions of the book or this interview–something I can play on-air

  • Deadline February 15th, 2009, EST

  • No P.O. Boxes Please

  • U.S. & Canada residents only

Unbridled Books Description:

In 1946, a storm-wrecked boat carrying Hollywood’s most famous swashbuckler shored up on the coast of Jamaica, and the glamorous world of 1940’s Hollywood converged with that of a small West Indian society. After a long and storied career on the silver screen, Errol Flynn spent much of the last years of his life on a small island off of Jamaica, throwing parties and sleeping with increasingly younger teenaged girls. Based on those years, The Pirate’s Daughter is the story of Ida, a local girl who has an affair with Flynn that produces a daughter, May, who meets her father but once. Margaret

Spanning two generations of women whose destinies become inextricably linked with the matinee idol’s, this lively novel tells the provocative history of a vanished era, of uncommon kinships, compelling attachments, betrayal and atonement in a paradisal, tropical setting. As adept with Jamaican vernacular as she is at revealing the internal machinations of a fading and bloated matinee idol, Margaret Cezair-Thompson weaves a saga of a mother and daughter finding their way in a nation struggling to rise to the challenge of independence. 

A wonderful book review excerpt from BookingMama:
THE PIRATE’S DAUGHTER by Margaret Cezair-Thompson has been on my radar for over a year now so I was very excited when one of my book club members selected it for our December meeting. News about this book just kept popping up everywhere, and all of the buzz was so good. I think it was only a matter of time before I picked it up.

I first heard about this novel when Unbridled Books released it last fall. The book’s description sounded very interesting to me. Then, it started receiving some big-time praise including including the #1 October 2007 Book Sense Pick as well as 2008 Essence Magazine Literary Award for Fiction. In August, the trade paperback version of THE PIRATE’S DAUGHTER was released by Random House with a bright, gorgeous cover. And just a few months ago, Celestial Seasonings’ Adventure at Every Turn selected it as one of their book club picks. I am just so glad that someone finally selected it for us to discuss.

I wasn’t sure what I was expecting when I began reading THE PIRATE’S DAUGHTER, but I have to say that the book was a little different than I thought it would be. While I knew that the story was about a young Jamaican girl, Ida, who falls in love with Errol Flynn, I didn’t know that the book also included a lot of historical information about Jamaica. Having known absolutely nothing about Jamaica and their struggle for independence in the 1970s, I thought it was very interesting. The author did a tremendous job of incorporating the history with the characters in this novel.

I had always known that Errol Flynn was a unique figure to say the least, but I had no idea how much trouble this man could cause. I found him to be extremely distasteful — he seemed to prefer under-age girls and lots of alcohol; however, I thoroughly enjoyed the descriptions of him and his actions — these scenes were excellent. He must have been such a charismatic figure because men and women alike wanted to be in his presence (although to me he just seemed disgusting.) I found it so sad that Ida fell in love with him (or the idea of him) and ended up sacrificing her entire life because of her feelings. For More . . . 

Margaret’s Suggested Reading:

  • Mister Pipp, by Lloyd Jones “I love and highly recommend,” says Margaret

Margaret’s favorite author (when forced to pick ONLY one!):


There Are 14 Responses So Far. »

  1. Carrie, it was so cool to hear your voice!
    I would LOVE to win and read this book!! Thank you so much for telling me about it. I enjoyed your interview with Margaret. I have a friend who’s visiting Jamaica right now. She loves it and eventually wants to live there. I don’t understand all the fuss so I’d love to read Margaret’s take on it. I also love stories about famous movie stars. Anywho, this book sounds fantastic and as far as the contest goes, I’m IN LIKE FLYNN, Baby! I have a pirate in my ancestry, btw.

    Mel K.
    Meljprincess AT aol DOT com

  2. Hi Carrie,
    Well I may not have a pirate in my family tree yet I have always loved the beach and sun! I enjoyed the books write up and especially BookingMama’s review. I can sense a lot of fantasy around love and life from both Ida and May, perhaps even Flynn.
    Please enter me to receive this book!
    Thanks so much,
    darbyscloset at yahoo dot com

  3. Hi Carrie,
    I came over from Goodreads and am very happy I did. I had never heard of this book before and look forward to reading it. Thanks for the interview. And winning a free book is always nice too. 🙂

  4. Errol Flynn created a lot of buzz back in those days; I remember it well because there weren’t as many public scandals as there are now. I would love to read ths book. Thanks.

  5. This sounds like an awesome read…real life at it’s best. Please enter me in the contest. Thanks so much.

  6. Wonderful! Please enter me in the contest. THANKS!


  7. I love books with historical information as well as a personal story. This book sounds wonderful. Please include me in the contest!

  8. Hi Carrie!
    Obviously I already have the book from the cruise, so don’t enter me for this one! I listened to the interview today, and have to say it made me enjoy what I read quite a bit more. Or maybe I didn’t appreciate what I had read until listening to the interview. Either way, it was great to hear Margaret’s comments. Thanks! Tara

  9. Just a few minutes ago I watched the short talk by Margaret Cezair-Thompson. It has made me want to go out and buy the book right away although I would much prefer to win it. I have always loved Erroyl Flinn’s movies but had no idea about his life in Jamaica although I can’t say that I am too surprised. The book sounds wonderful. I would love to learn more of the life of Ida and her daughter. Thank you for entering me.

  10. Another great interview Carrie. Loved it and can’t wait to read the book!

  11. The book sounds attractive and intriguing. I have always loved the beach, heat and sunshine. The talk was interesting and thanks for the interview which is excellent.

  12. Errol Flynn continues to fascinate us. And anything, even remotely about the man, is read. What about the next generation though? For anyone under 40 even. Will this appeal to those not raised with black & white films, or the transition from b&w to color?

  13. I would love to read this novel. It sounds great and the cover is lovely. I love a good cover!

  14. Thank you!

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