Pirateship Down: A Few of Jean’s Favorite Things by Suzanne Johnson


PIRATESHIP DOWN: Stories from the World of the Sentinels of New Orleans

by Suzanne Johnson,
Published by Suzanne Johnson
E-Book/Paperback 278 Pages

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. 


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Trollops and Tiaras: A 19th-Century Pirate Privateer in a 21st-Century World

Suzanne Johnson


Recently, I had the chance to speak with early 19th-century French pirate, er, privateer Jean Lafitte, who plied the waters south of New Orleans in the early 1800s until his mortal life ended and he was granted immortality by the magic of human memory.

The immortal Lafitte, who in the past few years has begun to spend a great deal of time in modern New Orleans and his suite at the Hotel Monteleone, shared the five things he most enjoys—and the five he least enjoys—about the current world.

The Bad

  1. Sea Police

“Modern gendarmes use extremely fast motorized ships, and have special députés who do nothing more than attempt to interfere with seafaring citizens. I find this a most distressing and egregious abuse of power….Do you know where I might obtain one of these motorized ships?”

A U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Oak small boat crew and a Royal Saint Lucia Police Force patrol boat crew act as drug smugglers during a scenario-based interdiction exercise for Tradewinds 2013.  Tradewinds 2013 is a joint, combined exercise conducted in conjunction with partner nations to enhance the collective abilities of defense forces and constabularies to counter transnational organized crime and to conduct humanitarian/disaster relief operations. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by SSgt. Earnest J. Barnes/Released)

  1. Stolen Land
    Barataria Preserve, Louisiana Sunset by Lauren Swain
    Barataria Preserve, Louisiana Sunset by Lauren Swain

“It is most distressing to see how much of my home in Barataria has been reclaimed by the sea, so that soon there will be nothing left of it at all. My friend the wizardess Drusilla says it is called ‘global warming,’ but I am quite chilled at the moment after a recent snow, so I do not believe she knows as much as she professes. This is a problem my lovely Jolie often has.”



  1. Motorized Carriages.

“Worse than gendarmes in motorized ships are commoners racing up and down the pathways in motorized esyouvees, pickuptucks, and other sorts of horseless vehicles. They often do this while staring at small magical smartboxes instead of the roadway. I wonder when they shall all kill each other, which would help with…”


  1. Noise

“Mon Dieu, but the modern city has grown quite disturbing. In my human days, one could hear the singing of songs and the call of merchants and conversation, but now the music has no tune and motorized carriages have horns and music boxes, and people speak with great profanity. Pardon, but do you know the meaning of mofo? Drusilla will not tell me this thing and I hear it often.”


  1. Women’s Clothing.

“If women are not dressed quite indecently, exposing parts of their bodies that should be reserved for intimate moments with a gentleman such as myself, they dress as common peasants, often with pantalets worn in public with no petticoats or skirts. It is quite scandalous, and not at all proper.”


The Good

  1. Cleanliness.

“There are a great many things much improved in modern Nouvelle Orleans,” said Lafitte, relaxing in the plush surroundings of the Monteleone’s Eudora Welty Suite. “In my human life, the streets of the city were unpaved and often covered with mud.” He paused, wrinkling his nose. “Often, things much less pleasant than mud. Quite malodorant.”


  1. Cuisine.

ShockedSatterfield's_Little_Bear_mascot_(1913)“While I often pine for a fine roast of bear or fish stew, I must admit that the modern marketplace fills one’s senses with delight. Each week, I attempt to sample some delicacy unfamiliar to me.” He pauses and digs into a plastic bag sitting on the coffee table of the hotel suite living room. “I do not understand some of the names of these things, however. Such as these ‘Butterfingers.’ They appear to be made of neither butter nor fingers. I shall try them as an adventure, however.”

Butter Finger Candy Bar


  1. Lifting Rooms.

Mon Dieu, how much simpler modern folk are able to live, with Lifting Rooms (Drusilla calls them “elevators”) to whisk them to the highest places in a matter of moments. It is quite no wonder that most people have grown quite lazy. I do not miss stairs, however.”


  1. Story Boxes.


“I am quite fond of the story box that is found here in the rooms of Eudora Welty; I am fortunate that she left it behind, as I have never met the woman. I find many of the people who talk inside this story box (which Drusilla calls a “teevee”) quite amusing, particularly the ones about baby-daddies and alligator hunting and cowboys. I do not, however, wish politicians to be able to speak from my story box, as they say little that differs from those from my human life.”


  1. Women’s Clothing.

“Women often dress quite indecently, exposing parts of their bodies that remind me of intimate moments that might be shared with a gentleman such as myself. It is quite scandalous, and not at all proper, but, alas, I might be an undead man but I am still a man and therefore must look upon such sights with the greatest interest.”



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Want more of Jean Lafitte? Suggest a food you’d like Jean Lafitte to try to be entered for your choice of any of the Sentinels of New Orleans novels. Open internationally. You also can enter here for the $50 gift card to Amazon, B&N, or Book Depository in the PIRATESHIP DOWN giveaway that ends on Nov. 30: 
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Suzanne Johnson grew up halfway between the Bear Bryant Museum and Elvis’ birthplace, but was also a longtime resident of New Orleans, so she has a highly refined sense of the absurd and an ingrained love of SEC football, cheap Mardi Gras trinkets, and fried gator on a stick. Currently biding time in Auburn, Alabama, she is the author of the Sentinels of New Orleans urban fantasy series. Book five, BELLE CHASSE, is due November 2016. Writing as Susannah Sandlin, she’s the author of the best-selling paranormal romance Penton Vampire Legacy series, the award-winning romantic suspense series, The Collectors, and the Wilds of the Bayou suspense series, starting spring 2016 with WILD MAN’S CURSE.

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