The Atrocities of the Pirates

Read by James K. White

(4.3 stars; 197 reviews)

In 1822, Aaron Smith, a young English seaman, was taken captive by Cuban pirates when his ship was boarded en route from Jamaica to England. Forced to work as a navigator and as a member of pirate boarding parties, he witnessed unspeakable acts of murder and torture. Befriended by a young Cuban woman, he managed to escape with his life, but was arrested as a pirate in Havana and sent back to England in chains. There, he found himself on trial for his life at the Old Bailey courthouse—with the attorney general himself leading the prosecution. Smith's dramatic account of his personal experience is a brutally honest, unromanticized [sic] look at piracy in the 19th century. (Summary by Google Books) (3 hr 37 min)


Preface 7:12 Read by James K. White
(Part 1) A Narrative, etc., etc. 34:59 Read by James K. White
(Part 2) A Narrative, etc., etc. 27:28 Read by James K. White
(Part 3) A Narrative, etc., etc. 32:57 Read by James K. White
(Part 4) A Narrative, etc., etc. 28:59 Read by James K. White
(Part 5) A Narrative, etc., etc. 27:47 Read by James K. White
(Part 6) A Narrative, etc., etc. 33:35 Read by James K. White
(Part 7) A Narrative, etc., etc. 24:33 Read by James K. White


An excellent piece of historical writing

(5 stars)

Piracy, but with all the fiction and Diosney drained out of it. Highly recommended, and brilliantly read.

learn about harsh reality of pirates but...

(3 stars)

great job by the reader. a very clear voice that was pleasant to listen to. this true account from the pirates hostage was interesting to see how truly cruel pirates were, not just made up fables. and how corrupt the people in power were, benefiting from the pirates they should have been after to capture. but this account is not written in much detail, sounds more matter of factly than anything. makes it a little dull in my opinion.

(4 stars)

If your looking for a gory, bloody book on pirates, this isn't it. It does contribute some ghastly works done by the pirates but is mostly a historical read. Read very well! I found this book very interesting, primarily because I knew so little on the subject. Since uou showed interest in pirates by being here, listen, you'll be glad you did.

The Atrocities of the Pirates

(5 stars)

<br />This is a curiously good book for a fan of <i>Treasure Island</i>. On the surface it's the memoir of an Englishman who was captured by pirates off Cuba in the 1820s, forced to work as a pirate while suffering wretched ignobilities, then captured by the English and put on trial for piracy. The book is the authors attempt to restore his reputation, to show he was a good guy and not a pirate. It's impossible to know how much was embellished as it was self-serving. Even contemporary reviewers said the same, they found it an exciting narrative, but unsure what to believe. There is no way to know. Whatever the case, it's a great story with insights into pirate sub-culture. The pirate captain is the best character, he is an unpredictable paranoid sadist who kills for the slightest reason yet is easily manipulated, the proverbial loose canon in all senses. There is little of the romanticism made famous with the morally ambiguous Long John Silver in <i>Treasure Island</i>. It reminded me of accounts by captives in modern day Afghanistan or Colombia in terms of the terror each day brings not knowing what would happen next. My overall sense is most of the story is true because there were witnesses still alive when it was published who could have otherwise refuted the facts. The 1999 print edition contains a foreword and afterward with additional information by the relatives of Smith, not included here. Also, a great <a href="" rel="nofollow">job by James K. White for LibriVox</a>, these older texts are difficult to narrate smoothly but he never falters. [STB|787|042012]

Good history, well read

(5 stars)

I'm not prone to giving 5 stars but this story, and the reader, deserve it. An interesting set of views into not only pirates but also local Cuban magistrates, priests, black markets, the US Navy etc. It works on many levels and it's not "too long", so give it a try...

Great book and reader

(5 stars)

Exposes true nature of pirates, not like what is portrayed in movies. Details of horrors committed by pirates are gruesome, but without such details wrong image would have been portrayed.

time of misery

(5 stars)

I found this narrative to be extremely captivating. A very poignant and direct view of the life of cutthroat pirates and the perseverance of a captive in desperate conditions.

3.5 Stars

(4 stars)

Reader did an excellent job. The book read closer to a history than a novel. Surprising lack of excitement or suspense for a book about pirates and sailing.