16th century Caribbean history


I’m taking a short detour from Tripoli stories and other subjects to advertise my own books, available on Amazon. I’ve written and published:  Melaynie’s Masquerade, An Army Brat in Libya, Colonels Don’t Apologize, Pink Glasses, Weird Dates & Strange Fates, Angels in Uniform, and Discovering the Victor in Victoria.  (http://amazon.com/author/victoriagiraud). They are all based on true stories, but fictitious names are used in many of them.

I’ve included an excerpt  of my historical fiction novel, Melaynie’s Masquerade below; it’s part of a love scene. I’ve always enjoyed historical fiction and became enchanted with the 16th century some years ago when I attended Southern California Renaissance Faires. My fictional character, Melaynie Morgan, lives in Plymouth, England, and when she decides to turn her traditional world upside down, she embarks on a sailing adventure with Francis Drake, a daring Plymouth captain, later famous for sailing around the world and for bringing home Spanish gold for Queen Elizabeth I of England. Drake is sailing to the Caribbean to plunder Spanish treasure; thinking he has met an enthusiastic young boy, he hires Melaynie as his cabin boy. What a masquerade she accomplishes before Drake and his crew sail back to England a year later!

Mel book cover #1

The following is a preview of one of the love scenes between Melaynie and Bernardino from the book. Bernardino is a dashing Spanish envoy come to negotiate with Spain’s English enemy, Francis Drake. Young Melaynie, dressed as Drake’s cabin boy, has successfully hidden her sex from all the English sailors, including Drake, but Bernardino discovered the secret.  She is guiding the Spanish visitor, who recently became her lover,  to his guest tent on the Caribbean island beach where he will spend the night:

Bernardino leaned upon her once more in case someone spotted them, and they walked quickly but stealthily the short distance to the tent.

“No need for a candle or lantern, sweeting, there’s a bit of moonlight through the opening. I have memorized your face and I know where all your important parts are,” Bernardino said, desire heating up his words, making them expand and surround her.

“Mmm…you have all the perfect words for me, my heart,” Melaynie answered as she lovingly touched the dimples of his smile and pulled his head down to meet her eager lips. She could feel his excitement now, heightened by her forward moves. She liked the feeling of taking charge that pretending to be a male gave her; it would enhance her lovemaking. She was not as innocent as the first time, and the power of knowledge created a white heat that coursed through her body.

Through open lips, her tongue explored his mouth. When she withdrew it, she kissed his cheeks as she ran her fingers through his thick dark hair. Her fingers caressed his neck and the short beard on his strong chin before finding their way to his chest and the nipples through the open neck of the loose shirt. She remembered the extreme pleasure he had given her and excited herself by being the aggressor. Tugging at his shirt, she pulled it out from his breeches. Sensing her mood, he opened his arms to allow her to remove the shirt.

She stepped back, appraising him. “Hmm…a fine specimen of manhood we have here.” A step forward and she was unfastening his breeches and undergarment and running her hands slowly down his hips. The hands moved softly and tenderly toward his engorged member.

Sir Francis Drake -- my hero!

Sir Francis Drake — my hero!

To find out what happens next, you will have to read the book, which can be ordered from Amazon.


Adventures on the sea are always popular–I sure had fun writing my historical fiction novel. Two fairly recent films–“Captain Philips” with Tom Hanks and “All is Lost” with Robert Redford captured lots of interest. I’ve always enjoyed that genre in movies and books, just as I enjoyed my own adventures on a US Navy ship sailing in the Mediterranean and across the Atlantic Ocean back in the 1950s.

My book on Melaynie needs a new look. I love the drawing of the ships, but it doesn’t convey the romance in the story. I think a combined portrayal of Melaynie, Francis Drake, Bernardino–the handsome Spaniard love interest, and the loyal Diego are possibilities for a new cover. A reasonably priced cover artist is needed. In case someone is intrigued, get in touch. Perhaps we can do some kind of trade.

Writing a novel, especially in the historical fiction genre, is a daunting task. A few years ago I took on the challenge. I had always loved history and for many years had attended Renaissance Pleasure Faires in Southern California. I knew something about Shakespeare since I was an English major in college and had seen many Shakespeare plays and films. It seemed liked a natural thing to do. Besides, I’d already written a screenplay about Francis Drake, the English sea captain who was known for his pirate activities against the Spanish in the Caribbean in the 16th century. Since it was damn difficult to finance a movie, especially a sea epic, I had the brilliant idea of taking the elements of the script, add a fictional heroine and, presto, I’d have a book. A lot of effort went into more historical research and almost five years later I had a book. After all that time and no luck finding an agent right away, I was impatient to have it published. I chose the self-publishing route when the idea was fairly new and easy. Since then I’ve also published it on Amazon as an Ebook. The link to Amazon is in the upper right of this page or follow the link: http://amazon.com/author/victoriagiraud

My book is full of true adventure (Essentially, only my heroine and her family are fictional) and romance. I’ve even written a couple of sex scenes. After all the 50 Shades books are all the rage! See below for a teaser about the romance that develops:


With Drake’s humorous admonition to be careful with their guest, Melaynie carried a lantern to show Bernardino to his private tent at evening’s end.

In the light of a bright moon, whose rays poured through the wide opening of the small quarters, Bernardino found and immediately sat down on the portable cot. Tired from the day’s excitement and mellowed to the point of sleepiness by the wine, he languidly watched as the young captain’s boy placed the lantern on an empty cask, thinking as he watched of his young sister. Why was he thinking of his sister; was it the way this young boy moved, or simply the beauty of youth?

He leaned back and began to remove his doublet, welcoming the cooler night air on his skin. Remembering the music and the caress of the night breeze, he felt relaxed and sensual. Melaynie’s body and face were profiled in the moonlight. What a lovely young boy, Bernardino reflected as he studied the fine facial features and golden hair. He lazily watched the lantern’s flickering light, his feelings of arousal fanned by its glow. How agreeable it would have been to have a woman to love, an appropriate climax to a congenial evening.

Framed by the moonlight, the boy continued to stand, leaning toward the lantern, like a moth to the flame, his eyes mesmerized by the flame. From his angle lounging on the cot, Bernardino noticed the boy’s cream-colored shirt had flared outward as he stood there. The material was diaphanous enough that the lantern’s light revealed his naked chest. Bernardino smiled at the pretty picture it made, and then narrowed his eyes, looking again closely, as he sat up slowly, uncertain that what he saw was true.

The lantern had highlighted a pair of delicate breasts, whose outline was clear enough through the linen shirt. This was no boy; he saw the evidence. The breasts were small, but they were present. Had no one else in this English company noticed? Men could be dense; he had seen how she had been treated as her costume defined her. A turmoil of feelings assaulted him at this revelation, the excitement of the mystery of her only heightening his stimulated senses. He struggled to compose himself, to dampen his growing ardor, to quiet his racing mind.

Had he been intrigued because some instinct told him of her true gender? Whatever the mystical reasons, she must not guess he had seen her secret. Searching his mind for clues, he quickly surmised her subterfuge had been well hidden until now and that she was probably older than he had supposed. What had caused this young woman to carry off this masquerade; was she possessed by some unusual traits, a woman who felt herself truly a man? Or was it simply an adventure she sought, a desire to break from the traditional female role in her society? Did she feel he was a threat; was that why she had spilled the wine earlier? These turbulent thoughts raced through his mind in mere seconds.

Mel book cover 2


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