The Butcher’s Daughter
Historical Fiction / Adventure
Date Published: August 2015
Profanity – Moderate
Sex – Moderate
Violence – Heavy
In an age ruled by iron men, in a world of new discovery and Spanish gold, a young Irishwoman named Mary rises from the ashes of her broken childhood with ships and men-at-arms under her command. She and her loyal crew prowl the Caribbean and prosper in the New World for a time until the ugly past Mary has fled from in the old one finds her.
Across the great ocean to the east, war is coming. The King of Spain is assembling the most powerful armada the world has ever seen – an enormous beast – to invade England and depose the Protestant “heretic queen.” To have any chance against the wealth and might of Spain, England will need every warship, she will need every able captain. To this purpose, Queen Elizabeth spares Mary from the headman’s axe for past sins in exchange for her loyalty, her ships and men.
Based on true historical events, this is a tale about war, adventure, love and betrayal. This is a story about vengeance, this is a tale of heartbreak…
Recent Praise for The Butcher’s Daughter:
“… a pleasurable and action-packed read … a delicious spin to the otherwise tired clichés of male captains … the joy of the open seas – as well as the danger churning below – pulses throughout this rip-roaring, hearty tale of the high seas.” – Kirkus Reviews
“… an entertaining read … full of authentic historical events … a defiant story, a narrative of strong will and perseverance which ultimately plummets to a tragic end.” – Readers’ Favorite
“… a historic adventure … a beautiful romance …” – Bargain Book Reviews (5×5 Stars)
“A wonderful novel in the best tradition of maritime literature … authentic and rich with details, the characters are alive and passionate, and the plot is full of thrilling action, intense drama, and stunning surprises … [an] exhilarating adventure … an unforgettable journey …” – The Columbia Review
Blood. I saw a lot of blood as I stepped into my father’s shop that night.
I suppose the matter had to do with a debt unpaid, money owed to one clan or another. When I heard the voices of strange men inside our home arguing with my father, I had rushed downstairs out of curiosity with a candle in my hand, dressed only in my nightgown and barefoot.
And when I reached the bottom of the stairs, I saw two brutes holding my father down against his wooden cutting table while a third man, a tall, sinewy fellow standing in front of him, stabbed him over and over again in the arms, the chest and stomach with a long knife. Then the tall man tossed his knife in the air with one hand and caught it by the handle with the other, as if he was performing some parlor trick, and slashed my father’s throat wide open with one, elegant swing. Sprays of blood spurted across the room. I watched my father’s eyes flutter for a bit before they closed on him forever.
But I am well accustomed with blood and gore. I am the butcher’s daughter.
No doubt I stared at my father’s three murders wide-eyed, confused, even in horror. But I did not scream. I did not cry out. I did not look or call for any help. I buried any urge to panic.
The tall, sinewy man with the knife fled when he saw me. His two companions did not. They had unfinished business. They released their grip on my father. They let his limp body slip to the floor with a dull thud and then slowly moved towards me – all smiles.
I was but twelve or so. I had never known a man before that day.
About the author
Mark McMillin is a general counsel for a company in the aviation industry. His home is in the Atlanta, GA area.