Spotlight {Review, Excerpt & Giveaway} -- Pirateship Down by Suzanne Johnson

Pirateship Down: Stories from the World of the Sentinels of New Orleans
Suzanne Johnson

Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Suzanne Johnson
Date of Publication: November 2, 2015

ISBN: 978-0996822008
ASIN: B0169K0YW8

Number of pages: 278
Word Count: 55,000

Cover Artist: Robin Ludwig Designs

Book Description:

French pirate Jean Lafitte is tall, cobalt-eyed, broad-shouldered, and immortal. What’s not to love? But New Orleans’ most esteemed member of the historical undead is headed for trouble. He’s determined to reclaim Le Diligent, his gold-laden schooner lost at sea in 1814 and recently found at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico near Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana.

The U.S. Coast Guard and the Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office might beg to differ.

New Orleans wizard sentinel DJ Jaco and her merman friend Rene Delachaise can either lock up their friend Lafitte or join him on a road trip to Cajun country in order to save him from himself. Terrebonne Parish—not to mention its jail—might never be the same after the events of the all-new novella Pirateship Down, presented here along with a collection of urban fantasy stories and essays.

Wizards and Cajun merfolk, sexy shapeshifters and undead French pirates. Welcome to the world of the Sentinels of New Orleans in this collection, along with a little Louisiana lagniappe. No previous knowledge of the series required!

Available at Amazon


About five minutes passed before I heard Jean Lafitte in the hallway of the prison, having a spirited, if one-sided, argument about Spanish fruit. I definitely heard the words orange and Spaniard. And the pirate never had anything nice to say about Spaniards since he’d spent most of his human life plundering their ships.
The door opened, and he strode into the room, sending my empathic senses into overload with the force of his outrage. I closed my eyes and tried to squelch the urge to bray like a donkey, because the source of his anger was obvious.
They’d taken away the cord he used to tie back his shoulder-length, wavy black hair, but that wasn’t the problem. The problem was his fluorescent orange jumpsuit with Terrebonne Parish Prison stamped on the back. The suit was tight across his shoulders and baggy across his hips, obviously not tailored for the pirate’s athletic build, and the pants were three inches too short and flashing bare calf. He wore short white athletic socks someone had scrounged up for him. Obviously, his pirate boots had been confiscated. It wasn’t an outfit designed to please a man as arrogant and aware of his good looks as my undead pirate.
Jean shifted his commentary from his guard to me. “Drusilla, a grievance must be made against these ruffians and thieves. They have stolen my clothing and given me only this…this….” He ran out of words.
“Ugly-ass orange jumpsuit?” I offered, always ready to help Jean with his command of modern English.
“Oui, exactement. I demand that you obtain my release, tout de suite. And you must know, a woman who allows her husband to remain in such conditions for an entire evening must face reprimand.”
I leaned back in the chair and crossed my arms. “And you must know that, in this day and age, should a man reprimand his wife too much, said wife might leave her husband to enjoy a longer time in his prison cell wearing his ugly-ass orange jumpsuit.”
The guard who’d accompanied Jean into the room listened to this exchange with no expression. Now that Jean and I were both in silent mode, he leaned over to fasten the handcuffs to a ring on the center of the table, which forced the irate pirate to sit down.
“You got half an hour,” the guard said. “I’ll be right outside. If I hear or see anything through that door that I should not hear or see, visitation will be ended. That includes shouting, moving of furniture, excessive use of profanity, or sexual activity. Do you understand?”
I nodded. “Not a problem.” I had a confusion potion with Jean’s name on it in my shoe, and I wasn’t afraid to use it.

My Review

This read constitutes a collection of short stories and trivial information concerning Suzanne Johnson's Sentinels of New Orleans series!

It was a fun and greatly entertaining read, very well-built by the author, so that it wouldn't be hard for someone who hasn't read any books in these series -someone like me -, to follow up.

In more detail, the first short story "Talk Like a Pirate", mainly features 19-th century French Pirate Jean Lafitte and New Orleans Wizard Sentinel Gerry St. Simon. We get a first taste of the (in)famous pirate, and are able to see his interaction with the wizard before the series started.

Next, we get "a little something extra", with a brief, but to the point, explanation of the Sentinels Multiverse, and its inhabitants! This is where you can find out more about the wizards, the fae, the merfolk, and even the elves!

"Alex, The Pig" is a short story that features three of the protagonists of the Sentinels of New Orleans series, DJ, Alex and Rene. It is a short, fun read, about a small adventure that includes a certain cursed leprechaun!

The next story, "Cat Mon Dieu" features a rather brief adventure of the pirate Jean Lafitte, in the Rouses Supermarket, and the chaos he just barely avoided causing!

A few trivia is then offered about said pirate, for us to get a glimpse in his life before he was killed and became a historical undead livind in the Beyond!

More information about Alex can be found on "Rivalry", a short featuring himself and his cousin when they were still teenagers, and around the time he had just started getting to know his shapeshifts. For everyone that has read the series, this short would actually prove to be very enlightening as to why he is who he is, and about the way he behaves!

Both "Swamp Rats" and "Danger: Curves Ahead" featured DJ and Alex, giving us a glimpse of their relationship and how they interact with each other!

Another extra follows, regarding the Sentinels Bibliography, before another story occurring between Alex and his cousin Jacob is provided!

Last but not least, the novella with the same name as this collection, "Pirateship Down" is a quite an interesting read featuring DJ, Rene and their adventures trying to get Jean Lafitte out of the mess he has created for himself.

All the stories, and especially the novella, are quick, witty and with lots and lots of humor! I actually caught myself not only chuckling, but also laughing out loud with DJ's narration. I loved the author's writing style, and the whole collection made me want to start the series as soon as I get them on my hands!

All in all, 5 stars to a book that made me laugh 
more than any has succeeded in doing in a long long time!

About the Author:

Suzanne Johnson is the author of the award-winning Sentinels of New Orleans urban fantasy series for Tor Books, including the 2014 Gayle Wilson Award-winning Elysian Fields. Writing as Susannah Sandlin, she is author of the Penton Legacy paranormal romance series, including the 2013 Holt Medallion winner for paranormal romance Absolution, as well as The Collectors romantic suspense series, including Lovely, Dark, and Deep, 2015 Holt Medallion winner and 2015 Booksellers Best Award winner for romantic suspense. A displaced New Orleanian, she currently lives in Auburn, Alabama, and loves SEC football, fried gator on a stick, uptown New Orleans, all things Cajun (including a certain Cajun merman named Rene), and redneck reality TV.

Tour giveaway

$50 Gift Card to Amazon, B&N, or Book Depository

Open internationally

Giveaway runs Nov. 2-30
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  1. Welcome to the readers groups fan of Suzanne 's Writing ^^ really it's like magic! you will see each book is better than the last and all her stories are just perfect dosed between humour adventure ,suspense and romance

    1. I am certainly a fan of Suzanne's writing from now on! I'm already on a hunt for the first book of the Sentinels of New Orleans' series! I can tell all those amazing elements are completely balanced in her books! :D

  2. Great review. The stories do have a way of making us laugh. Glad you liked it and gave it a 5 star review. Welcome to the world of The Sentinels of New Orleans. What a wonderful way for new readers to join the world with us fans. Get the book guys, you will also laugh. Enjoy.....

    1. Thank you so much!! I'm sure that if I loved these shorts and this novella that much, I will only adore the actual series! It was a great opportunity, and I really appreciate the fact that it was given to me! :D

  3. I love Jean and D.J. and look forward to reading these stories.

  4. Love the Sentinels of New Orleans! This collection is the perfect addition to the series. Jean Lafitte is a fascinating character who brings new meaning to the term "historical undead". I'm already looking forward to the next book.

  5. I'm happy to hear you enjoyed the book without having read the series. This is a terrific opportunity to meet these delightful characters. Enjoy your launch into the Sentinel world!

    1. I absolutely loved the fact that the author made sure we would get a very good idea of the whole world, without having to read the stories! She didn't just want to promote the actual series, something that I believe makes everyone that reads this collection, to read the books all the much more!

  6. Great review and giveaway. Thanks!

  7. Thank you so much for the chance! I think it sounds great!

  8. The book sounds very exciting. Do you write in any other genre ?