Captured by the Mercenary (A Pirates of Britannia World Novel)


Set in the British Isles in 1483, the story follows Lochlan MacLean, a Scottish mercenary pirate, who accepts a mission to kidnap the young and beautiful Lady Isabel Willys. The mission is given to him by Isabel’s father, with instructions that Isabel is not to be harmed. After snatching her away and onto his ship, The Hella, Lochlan tries his best not to fall in love with her but fails miserably. Isabel mistakenly believes Lochlan is her betrothed, whom she has no intention of actually marrying. When it comes out that Lochlan is merely a pirate it’s too late. She has begun to have feelings for him that will not be denied. But how can a lady and a pirate find a way to be together and foil the plans of the lady’s despicable father?

“Captured by the Mercenary” is a light, generally well written, short tale that fans of the Pirates of Britannia series will likely gobble up. It provides exactly what this series promises. Much of the story, however, seems implausible and the emotions between the main characters, which are well drawn if not deep, flare too quickly to be believed.  Why isn’t Isabel more terrified, and why is Lochlan surprised that she is afraid of him when he has just kidnapped her? Their feelings for each other—after one day, including the kidnapping, Isabel yearns for him—seem manufactured as plot elements whiz by without much-needed development. Lochlan and Isabel are, however, quite likable and could have sustained a much longer story. The ending, too, is very abrupt. All these flaws aside, fans of the series will want to check out Ms. Ash’s novella.

Marc Joseph