Compiled by the Espresso Addict

Espresso Recommendations

Innovative and stylish fanfiction, showcasing the very best across multiple sf, fantasy & literature fandoms. Good writing in all its forms can be found here, including gen, het, slash, OCs, AUs, crossovers, future fics, humour & pastiche

Contents: 901 recs in 208 fandoms; 64 links

Pirates of the Caribbean

Apples by Catslash

'Barbossa himself had hated apples as a child.' A surprisingly moving study of an often-overlooked character

[Added 17/12/2003; Character Piece; <1000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Bull in a China Shop by Gileonnen

'Cravats, as it turned out, got stuffed into a man's shirt.' One of the discoveries along the way as Pintel & Ragetti try to go straight

[Added 17/12/2003; Humour; <1000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Debauchery by Ladybee

An AU set around a Boston fetish club, 'Debauchery' is surprisingly successful in recreating the characters, particularly Jack Sparrow, in the modern setting. Luscious descriptions, snappy dialogue and cheeky film references make this one hell of a read. (A sequel is now in progress, linked from the author's page)

[Added 17/12/2003; Drama; 6000-20,000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

First Night in Tortuga by Kapunua

'It mattered not that he was on land just then; the stars always moved like that, as did everything else in his sight. Always in time with the sea, no matter how far from her he ever was.' This vignette rambles around a bit for my taste, but Kapunua rewards the patient reader with an intriguing take on Jack Sparrow's particular brand of madness

[Added 17/12/2003; Character Piece; 2500-6000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

First Warning by Rave

'...then came the Smell: rum, seaweed, sweat and fish in a horrible salt-sweet miasma...' A peek at what might have happened aboard the Interceptor that, refreshingly, doesn't simply ignore the fact that Will and Jack are anything but friends at the outset. Gorgeous details and some great bickering dialogue

[Added 17/12/2003; Character Piece; 2500-6000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Fortune and Favor by Firesignwriter

The Pearl is no more; Sparrow & Anamaria fall into Norrington's hands: what will he do with them? Jack's internal monologue is very believable, and Firesignwriter ably captures the complexities of Norrington's character. I'm not sure that the sequels quite match the power of the original, but they're also worth a look: Shorn continues Jack's story, while Days of Firsts & Nights of Lasts by Ladybee follow Anamaria

[Added 17/12/2003; Drama; 6000-20,000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Harlots and Bones by Cavalorn

An unusual and extremely creepy vignette, worth reading for one simply superb phrase

[Added 17/12/2003; Drama; <1000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Hubris by Daft

'Your pride will be the death of you.' One of the very few stories to focus on the realities beneath the Disney sugar-coating

[Added 17/12/2003; Drama; 1000-2500; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Letter of Marque by Dee

Sharp dialogue, plausible characterisations and some lovely touches of detail place this little adventure a cut above the rest. Stands well alone, but a slashy continuation can be found in the Caribbean Cartography series

[Added 29/07/2004; Drama; 6000-20,000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Mermaid Kiss by Zara Hemla

'...it happened, and I know, for I was there.' Another tale to embellish the legend of Captain Jack Sparrow. Good command of detail and a quirky narrative voice make this vignette stand out from the crowd

[Added 17/12/2003; Drama; 1000-2500; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Mysticism by Gileonnen

'Jack had no god, but he had his beliefs...' A thoughtful study of Jack Sparrow, and his relationships with two generations of Turners, which stretches the characterisation beyond the film without breaking it

[Added 17/12/2003; Character Piece; <1000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Negotiations by Marnie

'Hell tossed like a ship in a quartering sea.' Marnie's gift for description is harnessed here to a plot with a twist or two, and there are nicely written cameos from assorted minor characters. This is the author's first turn at the helm of the Pearl and I think it shows in a slightly wobbly voice for Jack, but still well worth a try

[Added 15/06/2005; Drama; 20,000-50,000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Parrot by Penknife

'"This is my parrot." He holds up what looks like an egg. It might be a parrot's egg. It might, for that matter, be a rock.' An inspired backstory for Sparrow, who remains perfectly in character in the Potterverse (PotC/HP)

[Added 07/08/2008; Character Piece; 2500-6000; Pirates of the Caribbean; Crossover]

A Pirate's Life by Elspeth

In a fandom dominated by shorts, it's great to find a novel-length adventure that's a bit closer to the style of the movie. Set shortly after the film, 'A Pirate's Life' contains a nice blend of action and romance, and doesn't slip into the common mistake of over-sentimentalising Jack Sparrow. The style lurches around a bit in places, and the ending was weaker than I'd hoped, but on the whole, a good read

[Added 17/12/2003; Drama; >50,000; Pirates of the Caribbean]

A Sea Change by Ladybee

'...a sea can change a man, they say.' Ladybee gives us a unique version of Jack's backstory, rich in detail and invention. If you enjoyed 'A Sea Change', then you might like to sample some of the other stylish & unusual vignettes linked from the author's page, especially Salt, the Content of my Heart & Eye of the Needle

[Added 17/12/2003; Drama; 1000-2500; Pirates of the Caribbean]

'The Swordsmith and the Pirate: A Romance of the Spanish Main', by Elizabeth Turner by Gloria Mundi

'So... my wife has been writing carnal romances with ne'er a woman in sight.' With a premise like this, what's not to like? Best of all, Brancher has written a beautifully characterised and very witty sequel, Happy Endings

[Added 17/12/2003; Humour; 1000-2500; Pirates of the Caribbean]

Three Bells and Cockleshells by Rex Luscus

'His face was the color of bone. A black boat cloak billowed from his shoulders like smoke from a pyre, and his body seemed to waver and ripple, like the air over a volcanic vent.' Unusual AU coda to At World's End, with gorgeous description and a real fairy story feel. Magical

[Added 09/06/2011; Romance/Erotica; 2500-6000; Pirates of the Caribbean]