VIRGIN ISLANDS – Virgin Islander, Eugenia O’Neal, has released her latest historical novel, Dido’s Prize, by Parker Publishing. Set in Jamaica, Cuba, and Central America, Dido’s Prize tells the story of a young slave who wants nothing more than to earn enough to buy her freedom and that of her family.
When her mistress reneges on her promise to allow Dido to keep her earnings as a vendor, Dido disguises herself as a man and runs away.
In Port Royal she signs up for Henry Morgan’s expedition against the Spanish and participates in the pillaging of El Puerto del Principe, a small town in Cuba’s interior, and of the rich city of Porto Bello on the coast of New Spain (now Panama). But will the riches she acquires be enough to secure her family’s future on an island where slave-owners rule the society?
Dubbed an “exciting, fast-paced story with runaway slaves, swashbuckling pirates and a slave uprising” by reviewer Leslie Frohberg at The Romantic Times Book Reviews, the story has also been described as a “heartfelt story of human bondage and freedom” by Ann Brown of the RAWSISTAZ Literary Reviewers.
“Writing this book was really a labour of love for me,” says Ms. O’Neal. “I saw it as a way of honoring the ancestors by telling their story from a new perspective.” According to the author, the novel provides a fresh take on the history of black people in the Caribbean.
“Many people don’t realize that there were black pirates but there are several references to them in contemporary accounts by people who lived during the Golden Age of Piracy so it’s not really a stretch to think that a few took part in Morgan’s raids on the Spanish,” she says.
Ms. O’Neal’s previous books include the non-fiction “From the Field to the Legislature: A History of Women in the Virgin Islands,” Greenwood Publishing, 2001, and the romance, “Just an Affair”, Genesis Press, 2003. She lives in the Virgin Islands.
To learn more about her, visit her website at http://www.eugeniaoneal.com/.