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3.4 of 5 stars 3.40  ·  rating details  ·  440 ratings  ·  52 reviews
(Doubleday, 1985) 'Action-crammed, historically factual novel . . . is a rousing read, ably researched by Hoover Publishers Weekly Barbados and Jamaica 1648. The lush and deadly Caribbean paradise, domain of rebels and slaveholders, of bawds and buccaneers. Colonists fight a wishful war for freedom against England. Idea points: Slavery, slaves, Caribbean, sugar, sugar mill ...more
Nook, 1054 pages
Published August 19th 2010 by Smashwords, Inc. (first published 1985)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,099)
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Wow, did I love this amazing book! It truly was like a James Clavell or Leon Uris historical novel where a great deal of research has gone into the accurate historical background, and the fiction and fictional characters were created to fit into the history--rather than recreating history to fit the whims of the author's fiction. I know, because this book had me bouncing all over the internet reading maps and histories to delve deeper into the stories. I should have been awarded three college cr ...more
--From Red Adept Reviews--

I downloaded Caribbee, by Thomas Hoover, as a free book from

Overall: 3 3/4 Stars

Plot/Storyline: 4 1/2 Stars

The opening scene grabbed my attention; a good pirate raid will do that. But once the main story began, it took awhile for the pace to pick up again. After that point, the rising action was consistent: numerous buildups to intermediate climax points as the overall tension of the book consistently rose to the finale.

The plot of this novel weaves several
This historical fiction book had some good points including strong and interesting female characters, alluring scenes of passion, and a unique historical perspective on the early days of the Caribbean Islands. However, I think the major failing of the author was his inability to focus the story on one particular set of main characters. This lead to some good initial character development, but then lack of utilization of those characters consistently throughout the novel. In addition, there was s ...more
Mike Nallo
While I found this book to be at best, mildly interesting, my overall feeling is one of disapointment. This effort would have been better served had it been split into two seperate books. This would have allowed for a more focused plot development. I found the numerous side stories to be a distraction, and felt they detracted from the overall focus of the book. This book had potential, which was never realized, due, in my opinion, to the reader never really being able to determine what the main ...more
Historical Fiction about Barbados, Tortuga and Jamaica in the mid-1600's. The author pieced together a story based on real people and events. Interesting read with good characters and story line. Learned a little about the Caribbean islands history, slavery, Cromwell's Puritans, sugar cane industry and buccaneer history, all set in a tale that kept me interested.

Pretty good read!
The first American revolution didn't start in the New England, along the Atlantic coast or in Pennsylvania -- it started in Barbados. In the mid-seventeeth century a group of English settlers revolted against the rule of
Oliver Cromwell and the Commonwealth. The fighting force was a mixed group: planters (slave owners) who feared losing their lucrative cane profits, English loyalists, Irish indentured servants who hated what Cromwell had done to Ireland, Dutch sea captains who traded in Barbados,
At first, I thought this had the potential to be quality historical fiction, but it just ended up reading like a wannabe historical romance. Blah.
Dava Stewart
I read another book by Thomas Hoover several months ago, set in India, and quite enjoyed it. This one...a bit less. I was bored several times, and actually had to force myself to finish it. The majority of the story takes place on Barbados, and tracks the settlement of the island by the English up to the point the first slave ship arrives.

Throughout the first 3/4 of the book, the main character talks about and thinks about taking over Jamaica. The last few pages of the story are set on Jamaica.
Richard Sommery-Gade
Feb 12, 2013 Richard Sommery-Gade rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Adults
Recommended to Richard by: Self
A true swashbuckling story derived from the true history of Hispaniola, Jamaica, Tortuga, basically all the Caribbean Islands of legend and the men & women of the 1600's to the 1700's in Charles II & Cromwell's rule of England. Before slavery had taken hold in the Americas, instigated by the Puritans & Roundheads of the time, while chastising the Roman Catholics for their Church policies, were in a lot of instances worse than the people they were at war with, which is so often the ca ...more
Chris Hayes
Great pirate story, over too soon

Hoover does a great job in bringing together research on 17th century piracy into a compelling story, with plenty of sex and violence along the way. Most of the story involves the failed Barbados revolution, and I wish he gave as much attention to the purely pirate days of the opening and close of the novel. Overall a good read.
Rob Godfrey
I really enjoyed this book! I wanted to give it 4.5 out of 5.
A story that never drags with plenty of love, action, treachery and surprises to keep you engaged.
The setting in the 17th century on Barabados at the start of the slave trade was intriguing and although I have little knowledge of those times, seems to ring true.
The characters were a little sterotyped though (hero is an ace shot, heroine beautiful, etc).

Another doubt was about the quantity of rum that people drink. I'm no stranger to al
I got a little history I did not know. It covers a few years around 1650 when the English took a deep-dive into slavery and slave trading in the Carribean for the sake of white gold (sugar). It preceded and predestined same in Virginia. I learned about Barbado's brief fight for independence, Cromwell's failed plan to take over the area from the Spanish, Dutch traders, and bucaneer's efforts to confound them all. What a rollicking decade. It was a generally good read, but unfortunately you have t ...more
Teressa B
3.5 stars I love historical fiction and this book delivered. Some of the fiction filling was cheesy but overall it was mostly entertaining. The historical filling was educational and interesting. And this book was a free download. Win-win!
Vanessa Wester
Overall, I enjoyed reading this story with its vivid depictions of life in the Caribbean during the 16th Century.

However, it was a bit too long winded at times, with some scenes not really adding much to the book.

The main issue I had was the scattering of typos, which started to get annoying. Even though I got this book for free it is no excuse. The problems should be fixed.
Reverend Stanleigh Chapin
Well researched

Taking a number of facts, mix in components of real people, events and actual locations, develop,a story line that is interesting and you have this fine novel
Tanya Masiello
I downloaded this free on amazon. I really enjoyed reading about the history and the story was pretty fast moving. Nice book especially for a free download.
Richard Myers

A magnificent book about the early Buccaneers and how they got started and the histories of the islands of the Caribbean.
Longer review coming up. But to put it shortly: the first 60-65 % of the novel is very long-winded and wordy and could have done with a busy editor. The last third is a nice read, however.

Full review now up at:
interesting historical fiction about some islands I. the Caribbean
Just A
Historical fiction freebie

Caribbee was a fun bit of historical fiction very well researched and interesting. Being free just makes me want to read the authors other books!
Carrie Kellenberger
A good, solid read about Barbados and the beginning of the sugar industry in 1648, Caribee is the story of a Caribbean paradise and the people who inhabit the island, from buccaneers and plantation owners to the Africans who have been brought to the island and forced into labor. Caribee is action-crammed with enough historical facts included to make it a compelling read. This is available as a free Kindle download on Amazon.

Kindle e-book

If you like swash-buckling adventures with a basis in historical fact, then this is the one for you! The characters are, in the main, conglomerates of real people and the tumultuous period in American and British history (with the dark roots of the slave trade) is fascinating. Hoover has a flair for the dramatic and the sweeping events of this novel are so exciting that I was on the edge of my seat the entire time.
I have abandoned this book. This is not the age-of-sail kind of book I like to read, although there are a few elements of that genre. It's more of a historical novel based upon the sugar plantations and slavery.

I had to make myself read it though. I kept hoping there would be a plot twist or other development that would pique my curiosity and I would finish. I read about 20% and gave up trying.
So many characters are composites of real-life people that I don't trust the veracity of this book as historical. I will give credit for the discussion of Cromwell and his impact on the Americas. And for the descriptions of weaponry and the flintlock. Beyond that, as a distracting read with a little pirate romance, it was just okay. Good fiction. I prefer Jakes or Uris.
Myrna Miller
This book was a fun read -- it reminded me of the books I loved to read in high school and haven't read for many years. It had the handsome, smart rebel (of course)and the beautiful woman at his side. It was one of the those kind of books that you can enjoy but don't have to think about too much. No matter what the bad guys do to these two, there is always a way out.
It was interesting and had plenty of factual information thrown in to make it realistic. However, the characters seemed very stereotypical with no development. The plot was choppy and boring at it's best.
So long was the siege... that I had to drop the book :-( I got bored, will the besiegers win ? Yes of course from the beginning it was clear. I was looking for a pirate adventure... something fast-paced, not some boring siege with details as how keep is island out of the hands of the besiegers, and so on...
I appreciated learning something of the settlement and economic development of Barbados and Jamaica, but the storytelling was remarkably dull for a tale about pirates and buccaneers, and the Harlequin-esque flavor of the relationship between Hugh Winston and Katherine Bedford was off-putting.
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The book obviously does not have 0 pages 2 11 Sep 08, 2011 04:51PM  
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Thomas Hoover has a doctorate in oceanography and served as senior vice president of an architect-engineering firm in New York, where he has lived for several decades. His vices include being an avid sailor and a recognized collector of the classical music of India. He began his writing career with two classic non-fiction books on Far Eastern art and religion and then moved into fiction writing wi ...more
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