Hawkes Harbor

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Overview

An orphan and a bastard, Jamie Sommers grew up knowing he had no hope of heaven. Conceived in adultery and born in sin, Jamie was destined to repeat the sins of his parents—or so the nuns told him. And he proved them right. Taking to sea, Jamie sought out danger and adventure in exotic ports all over the world as a smuggler, gunrunner—and murderer. Tough enough to handle anything, he's survived foreign prisons, pirates, and a shark attack. But in a quiet seaside town in Delaware, Jamie discovered something that ...

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Overview

An orphan and a bastard, Jamie Sommers grew up knowing he had no hope of heaven. Conceived in adultery and born in sin, Jamie was destined to repeat the sins of his parents—or so the nuns told him. And he proved them right. Taking to sea, Jamie sought out danger and adventure in exotic ports all over the world as a smuggler, gunrunner—and murderer. Tough enough to handle anything, he's survived foreign prisons, pirates, and a shark attack. But in a quiet seaside town in Delaware, Jamie discovered something that was enough to drive him insane-and change his life forever. For it was in Hawkes Harbor that Jamie came face to face with the ultimate evil....

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
After an almost 20-year publishing hiatus, award-winning young-adult author S. E. Hinton (The Outsiders, Rumble Fish, Tex, et al.) has penned her first novel for an adult audience. Hawkes Harbor is a genre-transcending story -- equal parts horror, adventure, and mystery -- about an orphaned boy whose nightmarish experiences lead him to find happiness in the unlikeliest of places.

Jamie Sommers, an orphan at the age of 8, has had an eventful life. Barely in his 20s, Jamie has already sailed around the world several times with his partner in crime, Kellen Quinn -- living the life of a modern-day pirate, smuggling everything from jewels to guns to drugs. After years of living hard and fast, Jamie decides to find a quiet coastal town where he can settle down. Fate lands him in the quiet community of Hawkes Harbor on the Delaware coast, an "uncanny" town brimming with legends of hidden pirate treasure, haunted houses, and undead spirits. While searching for treasure in one of the many caves on Hawkes Island, Jamie stumbles across an old coffin secured shut with heavy chains. Thinking the casket contains gold trinkets, Jamie removes the chains -- and comes face to face with a creature that will drive him to the brink of insanity.

Grown-up fans of Hinton's previous works should enjoy this dark and strangely moving story, especially the incredibly complex protagonist, Jamie Sommers -- who is comparable in many ways to Ponyboy Curtis from The Outsiders. Like Hinton's other novels, Hawkes Harbor is fast paced, intensely emotional, and thought provoking. Paul Goat Allen

New York Times
"A recipe for a good time. Hinton's ability to engage hasn't faded."
San Antonio Express-News
"An adventure tale with plenty of twists, turns and action."
The Oklahoman
"Hinton offers a suspenseful, thought-provoking book, and the cross-genre plot makes for an entertaining read."
From the Publisher
“A dark, funny, scary, suspenseful tale that will entertain mainstream and adventure/horror readers alike…. The basic elements that made her book The Outsiders a long-time bestseller are present in this rousing read. This is a contemporary Treasure Island with a genre-bending twist.”—Publishers Weekly on Hawkes Harbor

“I gave myself to Hawkes Harbor from the very first page. I loved the mystery of it. Unfolding so deliberately. And then such horror, I wanted to echo Jaime’s fevered plea: ‘Don’t let it be dark…Don’t let it be dark!’ ” —Bestselling author R. L. Stine

“Set in Delaware and spanning the decades from the 1950s to the ’70s, Hawkes Harbor is an adventure tale with plenty of twists, turns and action.”—San Antonio Express-News

“Hinton offers a suspenseful, thought-provoking book, and the cross-genre plot makes for an entertaining read.”—The Oklahoman on Hawkes Harbor

Publishers Weekly
Erasing age and genre barriers, prize-winning, bestselling YA author Hinton turns out a dark, funny, scary, suspenseful tale that will entertain mainstream and adventure/horror readers alike. Jamie Sommers is orphaned at the age of eight in 1950 and sent to live with some nasty nuns until graduating as a troubled young man to a life at sea. After surviving a number of life-threatening adventures in exotic ports, he ends up in the small town of Hawkes Harbor on the Delaware coast, where he stumbles into a situation so dire his entire life is changed in a manner of minutes. His new employer, the mysterious Grenville Hawke, lord of Hawkes Hall, known to Jamie as It, the Thing and the Vampire, almost kills Jamie, then goes on to enslave him for years to come. Moving back and forth through time, Hinton twists and shapes her bleak material until the story and the reader's expectations have been turned upside down. This is an adult novel, meaning that Hinton gets to write sex scenes and use the word fuck when she wants to, but the basic elements that made her 30-year-old book The Outsiders a long-time bestseller are present in this rousing read. This is a contemporary Treasure Island with a genre-bending twist. Agent, Elizabeth Harding at Curtis Brown. (Sept.) Forecast: Booksellers should have success hand-selling to grown-up Hinton fans; older YA readers will enjoy the novel, too. With sufficient promo and word of mouth, this could hit national lists. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
From The Critics
While S.E. Hinton's first new novel in more than 15 years is marketed as an adult novel, her name recognition will no doubt cause young people to seek out Hawkes Harbor. (Sections of the book, in fact, read very much like a young adult novel. Readers will notice an echo of Ponyboy in the protagonist.) On the surface, the book is a mere re-working of a stock horror story. And even if, as some have suggested, the plot of the book is drawn directly from the televised series Dark Shadows, the book is much more than a simple horror story. The characters are well developed and believably unbelievable. We get to know the young protagonist, and we watch the roles of hero and villain shift as the plot develops. Ultimately, the book is a dark allegorical exploration of the descent into madness and the journey toward atonement. The elements of horror are best read as metaphor for the inner workings of the mind. Hinton graphically portrays the depths to which the human mind can sink, yet she also demonstrates our capacity to heal. Mature, sophisticated older adolescents will find the novel worthwhile. The book should not, however, be recommended to young people simply because they enjoyed The Outsiders. Hinton's first novel was a gritty young adult novel. Her most recent is a gritty adult novel. 2004, TOR, 251 pp., Ages young adult.
—Todd Goodson
Kirkus Reviews
Bestselling YA author Hinton's first adult foray, a lurid tale of a boy who goes wrong but is rescued by a man with an even more wicked past. In a plot with more bells and whistles than a new PC, Hinton mixes crime, horror, and redemption with a heavy hand in the story of young Jamie Summers. Reared by uncaring nuns in an orphanage after his single mother died, Jamie hasn't had an easy life: the nuns were tough, the Navy taught him useful skills but wasn't a picnic either, and, after that, sailing the Seven Seas with Kell, a charismatic criminal, was often perilous. Hospitalized now for depression, Jamie recalls in therapy how he fought with pirates, was attacked by sharks, ran guns for the IRA, got jailed for alleged rape, and killed a man. His hospitalization is being paid for by the wealthy Grenville Hawkes, who lives in the old Hawkes family mansion in Delaware. Jamie is grateful for all Grenville has done-helping him reform, giving him a job and a home. But Grenville wasn't always the benign entrepreneur who restored the family fortunes, and he has his own reasons for helping Jamie, who is haunted by memories of their meeting and its consequences. (In the therapy sessions, Jamie becomes agitated if it gets dark or there's thunder.) Before he met Grenville, Jamie learned of pirate treasure rumored to be buried in a cave near the abandoned Hawkes mansion. One night, Jamie paid a visit but found more than pirate treasure: a man suddenly arose from a coffin, asked what year it was, then fell upon Jamie's neck and began sucking his blood. Jamie is released to Grenville before his therapy ends and endures further challenges. Despite the sex and violence, more YA than adult. $200,000ad/promo
Pages Magazine - Ellen Kanner
"Hawkes Harbor is a ride so wild it all but lifts off the pages."
Pages Magazine
"Hawkes Harbor is a ride so wild it all but lifts off the pages."

— Ellen Kanner

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780765344724
  • Publisher: Doherty, Tom Associates, LLC
  • Publication date: 10/1/2005
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 4.22 (w) x 6.71 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Meet the Author

The legendary author of The Outsiders (1967), That Was Then This Is Now (1971), Rumble Fish (1975), Tex (1979), S.E. Hinton is acclaimed as one of the most provocative, best known and best selling young adult authors of all time. More than thirty years after its publication The Outsiders continues to appear on such bestseller lists as USA Today. And in PW's recently published "All-Time Bestelling Children's Books" (paperbacks) selling over 10,000,000 copies since its first publication, The Outsiders takes the number two position flanked by E.B. White's Charlotte's Web in first position and Judy Blume's Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing in third. Hinton's gritty and powerful novels have also inspired four major motion pictures. She lives in her home town of Tulsa, Oklahoma.
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Read an Excerpt

Hawkes Harbor

Interview

Terrace View Asylum, Delaware

JANUARY 1967

"So, Jamie, you've had a few weeks to adjust to Terrace View. How do you like it so far?"

Dr. McDevitt looked at the young man seated in front of his desk. A small, well-built young man who might have been handsome had it not been for his gauntness, the listlessness of his posture, the shadows around his shifting eyes.

He kept wringing his hands together.

"It's okay," Jamie answered, not looking up.

Dr. McDevitt wasn't insulted at Jamie's shrug, implying awell-run sanitarium wasn't any better than that state institutional hellhole, Eastern State, where he'd been for the last few months. Right now the young man probably couldn't tell one place from another. After all, he only recently could remember his name. And the brutal way he had been transferred here ... Dr. McDevitt was sure it had set his progress back for weeks.

"Grenville Hawkes asked that you be placed here. Do you remember Grenville Hawkes?"

Jamie shook his head.

"You used to work for him—he wanted to make sure you received the best treatment. Do you remember working for Grenville Hawkes, back in Hawkes Harbor?"

Dr. McDevitt thought he discerned a small flinch in Jamie's posture, but there was no change in tone, as he said, "No."

Dr. McDevitt glanced across the scanty medical report. Some doctor from Eastern State, who forgot to sign his name, had made a note that this was one of the worst cases of depression he'd ever tried to treat—it was no doubt a major cause of the amnesia. In the beginning, the patient would wake having no memory of the day before, would literally forget his own name by afternoon. Some memory of his early life was now returning, the report stated.

Not much to go on, but Eastern State was a place of housing, not treatment.

Dr. McDevitt wished he had more background. Jamie had been transferred here abruptly, at the insistence of Louisa Kahne. Her grandfather Johnas Kahne had founded and still technically ruled Terrace View. (The commonly held view, and joke, was that the esteemed Dr. Kahne wanted to make sure his progeny had a place to live; and out of all his swarm of eccentric descendants,this granddaughter was perhaps the most likely candidate.)

"Money is no problem," Louisa had insisted when she called demanding a room. "A favor for a friend of mine, Grenville Hawkes. Jamie'll be arriving some day this week. Yes, yes, I know, you're not accustomed to patients from the criminally insane ward at Eastern State, but crazy is crazy, after all."

No other instructions. Only a short note, and the deposit from Grenville Hawkes, followed in the mail.

 

 

Dr. McDevitt had decided to treat him on his own. There were no other instructions, recommendations. Apparently his benefactors were content if he'd just sit here, abandoned like some stray dropped off at a shelter. Jamie had seemed to respond to Dr. McDevitt well and from the first ... .

Dr. McDevitt still remembered the horrible beginning of Jamie Sommers's stay at Terrace View. It had gone to his heart when the young man turned to him.

"Dr. McDevitt, the new patient's here. James Sommers."

"Is Miss Kahne showing him to his room?"

"No, Miss Kahne's not with him. He's in a police car. He won't get out. And the officer is getting threatening."

Dr. McDevitt ran outside with Nurse Whiting. Yes, it was a police car. And an officer trying to talk sports with Lee. The attendant looked grim. No one without compassion was allowed to work at Terrace View.

"Hey, you want to get this nutcase outta my patrol car?" was the officer's greeting to the doctor. "I can't get Nurse Nancy here to help haul him."

Dr. McDevitt went to the car. The back doors were open, no one visible. He leaned in. Jamie Sommers was seated on the floor, headdown. Dear God, they'd put him in a straitjacket. There were shackles on his ankles. There was no mention of violence on his hospital record.

"Mr. Sommers," he said.

Jamie slowly raised his head. Young, thin, unshaven, dirty. And madness in his eyes.

"If you'll let me help you out, I'll remove your restraints. I'm sure they must be painful."

The man was still recovering from some very serious physical injuries. Louisa had attempted to gloss over that fact, but Jamie's medical records had preceded his arrival.

"Captain Harvard?" Jamie said uncertainly. He looked puzzled, hopeful.

"May I help you?"

"Sure," Jamie said. It was the last time he spoke for several days.

 

 

He was improving, now. He slept on his bed, not under it. He startled far too easily, but jumped, no longer screamed. Still suffered from night terrors. He was terrified of most of the attendants (Eastern State could take credit for a lot of that, the doctor suspected) but let Nurse Whiting trim his hair. He was settled enough in his new surroundings for a first session.

Dr. McDevitt looked over the report once more.

Interesting case, a kind they rarely got at Terrace View. A criminal, apparently (Dr. McDevitt had a copy of Jamie's police record as well as his medical reports), shot during a suspected kidnapping.

Dr. McDevitt winced as he read about the three bullets being surgically removed—God knew what kind of treatment Jamie'd received after leaving Hawkes Harbor Hospital for EasternState. The doctor had heard stories about the infirmary there.

"Well, Jamie, my records show you are twenty-five years of age?"

"Sounds right."

"Raised in St. Catherine's Orphanage, Bronx, attended Billingsworth High, Bronx, three years in the navy ..."

Dr. McDevitt paused—but Jamie didn't confirm any of it. Eastern State had suggested Jamie's memory of his early life was returning, but Jamie had given no indication of this other than knowing his name.

He watched with interest as Jamie's eyes went to the window. Dr. McDevitt had chosen this time of day for the interview with reason.

Jamie shifted in his chair, looked around for a clock, gripped his hands together, wiped them on his pants.

Twenty-five. Dr. McDevitt would have guessed him slightly older—sun had burned lines into his face, pain had stamped dark circles under his eyes.

"Did you like the navy?"

"Liked getting my third mate's papers. They're real handy."

"It gives no reason for your early discharge."

"I got sick of taking orders."

"There's no report of any discipline problem on your previous hospital record."

"Don't want no trouble." Jamie slumped down again. His eyes went back to the window. He swallowed.

"You know what time it is?" he asked.

"Sixish. Your former employer, Mr. Hawkes, gave us a glowing report, and assured us he still believed you innocent of any wrongdoing."

Jamie looked confused.

"I'm referring to your ... mishap with the Hawkes Harbor police."

"I didn't hurt anybody." Jamie's voice rose. "I know he shot me, but he didn't need to, I wasn't hurting anybody."

"It's all right, Jamie," Dr. McDevitt said. "All criminal charges have been dropped."

There had been no evidence with which to charge him.

In fact, when the doctor looked at the report, his first thought was to wonder why the lawman had thought it worthwhile to gun down an unarmed man on a mere suspicion.

Must have been a slow day in Hawkes Harbor.

"You don't remember the shooting? Or what led up to it?"

"I remember waking up after." Jamie rubbed his eyes with the heel of his hand.

That was on the report—prone to severe mood swings, cried easily, bouts of hysteria ...

"It really hurt," he explained. He looked at the windows. "It's getting dark. Usually, I get a pill about now ..."

"Of course. In just a moment."

The medical report emphasized the patient's extreme distress at twilight—unless heavily sedated he would not sleep at all at night. And even then, was subject to violent nightmares. And all that had certainly been borne out during these first few weeks at Terrace View.

"That's an interesting scar you have there."

"W-w-what?" Jamie went white. He clamped his left hand over his throat. "There ain't nothin' there."

"I mean the one that looks like a burn? From your shoulder down to your elbow."

Jamie pushed up the short sleeve of his white T-shirt to look,exposing a tattoo of a well-endowed mermaid on his bicep. And to Dr. McDevitt's total surprise, Jamie laughed.

"Hey, that? Shark got me. Got another scar at the same time. From my ass to the back of my knee."

"A shark bit you?"

"Hell no, my arm would be gone if it'd bit me. It was a twelve-foot tiger. No, it just rubbed me good. Maybe it was a lady shark, like Kell said ... they got hide worse than sandpaper. Took all the skin right off."

"And you find this shark attack humorous?"

"Well, the pirates thought it was funny, that's the important thing. And I thought ol' Kell was going to bust a gut laughing. Said he'd never seen anyone swim so fast."

Dr. McDevitt sighed. There had been no mention in his records of these fantasies ... .

"The pirates?" he inquired.

"Yeah, we were in the Andamans, smuggling rubies out of Burma ... ." Seeing the doctor's puzzled look, Jamie added politely, "The Andaman Sea, south of the Bay of Bengal—west of Bangkok? East of Sri Lanka?"

He appeared to be slightly shocked at the doctor's lack of geography. Then he looked at the window. The sunlight had disappeared.

"I think maybe I better get a pill—"

He jumped up and paced.

"Sharks got real dead eyes," he said rapidly. "You ever see one up close? Got dead eyes, you're kinda surprised they're breathin' ... . I seen dead eyes, though, burnin' like fires of hell ... . Oh God, it's getting dark ... don't let it be dark ... ."

Dr. McDevitt took a deep breath. He was witnessing what he'd only been told of before—Jamie's hysteria at sunset.

"There's nothing to be afraid of in the dark," he soothed.

"The hell there ain't!" Jamie was rapidly losing control. He looked around wildly, as if for an escape. "Bad stuff happens when it's dark. God, what's gonna happen now? Now what? God," he cried, "it's too late. It's dark. It's already dark."

Dr. McDevitt pushed a button on his intercom, called for an orderly and an injection. As rapidly as Jamie's hysteria was escalating, a pill would take too long.

"What bad stuff, Jamie?"

"You know. I can't stop it!" He paced, his eyes wild and empty. "I can't do nothin' about it! I'm too tired." His voice trailed off into a sob. "I'm too tired ..."

"Jamie," said the doctor, "you're going to need an injection now. I'm going to try not to be late with your medication again."

"Don't hurt me." Jamie gripped the back of his chair. "Please."

Lee advanced with the hypodermic; Jamie offered no resistance.

The orderly left, and Jamie slumped back into his chair.

His eyes gradually dulled as the tranquilizers took effect. His breathing returned to normal.

Something nagged at the doctor's memory. Yes, here it was in the police record—Jamie's deportation from three countries. Suspected of smuggling. Could any of this story be true? He shuffled through the papers, found a worn and well-stamped passport.

"Hey," Jamie said. "That's m-m-mine."

"Of course it is, Jamie. We're just keeping it for you. You can have it back."

"Okay," he muttered. "But don't lose it. I never lost a passport.Kell said I was the only person he knew who never lost a passport ... . You know, Kell had a U.S. passport, but he wasn't a citizen ... he was Irish. But he had a couple. Knew where to get good fakes."

"So, Jamie, sometime will you tell me about your shark attack and the Burmese pirates?"

"Yeah. Wish Kell was here, though. He could tell a story. We had drinks on the house every time ... ." Jamie's voice trailed off drowsily.

Dr. McDevitt called for an orderly, and Jamie left docilely for his room. The doctor made a note. He must always schedule Jamie's sessions in the mornings. It would probably be a while before he was weaned from the strong evening sedation.

Once the young man had gone, the doctor couldn't help glancing at the darkened window. Interesting story, yet how much of what he said was true? The doctor suddenly looked away, wondering what the dark could contain that could terrify a man who had faced Burmese pirates. Who laughed at sharks.

Andaman Sea

MARCH 1964

"Well, Jamie, if you don't hurry and get that engine started, we'll cook."

"I'm working as fast as I can. It's hard to breathe down here. Anyway, you want it done right, don'tchya?"

Jamie came up from the engine room. He was dripping sweat. He was wearing only a pair of cotton drawstring pants, but they were soaked and clinging to him and he seriously consideredtaking them off, too. It was easily 100 degrees, and a bright sun reflecting off the clear water, the white sand of the beach and cove, added to the heat.

He could use a swim anyway. First, a cigarette.

Jamie sat down at the table under the boat's awning and tapped a cigarette out of the package that lay there.

"Whoever thought this tub was a pleasure boat didn't know what pleasure was," he remarked.

It was a nice little one-cabin cruiser, or had been once. Fifteen years and a lot of rough use had changed it considerably.

"Well now, Jamie, we can be buyin' our own yachts, now, can't we? This tub got us out of Rangoon, and it'll get us to Sri Lanka. That's all that's needed."

Kellen Quinn sat idly in the seat behind the wheel. Other than constantly adding up how much money they'd have waiting for them in Bangkok, there wasn't much else he could do at this point.

Jamie picked up a water jug and took a small, careful swallow. Neither he nor Kell mentioned the fact they were starting to watch the water supply.

"You can fix it, can't you, lad?"

"Yeah. Don't worry." He rubbed at the gold stubble on his chin. It showed up glittering against his tan. His normally dark blond hair was striped gold with sun and salt; his hazel eyes looked almost yellow in his tanned face.

Jamie Sommers was twenty-one years old and he was very, very rich, if he could get to some place where he could spend his money.

"It's a good thing I got those spare plugs." Jamie had insisted on a few parts, once he got a look at the boat that was supposedto get them to Sri Lanka. Parts were harder to find on the black market than rubies, but rubies weren't going to run a boat.

Buy a yacht. Now there was a good idea. Jamie put the dangerous escape from Rangoon out of his mind, letting it wander to how to spend his money.

He'd been thinking along the lines of week-long drunks and very pretty ladies—adding a yacht to that mix was a good idea.

He picked up the worn leather bag that lay on the table. Very carefully—Kell had fits about the pearls getting scratched, but there sure hadn't been time to do any fancy packaging—he slid the contents onto the table.

Pearls. Jade. Rubies.

After two years, it was apparent General NeWin's socialist government wasn't working; most people thought sooner or later it would collapse. Meanwhile, the black market in Burma was a trader's market, medicine, cooking pots, even soap more valuable than pretty stones—

A score waiting to happen for a thinking man like Kellen Quinn, an acting man like Jamie Sommers.

"This one's mine, right?" Jamie held up an 8-carat, teardrop ruby. He liked the rubies the best. Pearls and jade were pale next to rubies. Kell had taught him how to judge jewels—the clarity and color to this one was breathtaking. This one was a keeper. He wasn't going to "translate" it into cash. It made him feel good just to look at it. Yeah, he was keeping this one.

"I told you after you downed that armed guard, whichever one you want."

Kell watched Jamie hold the stone up to the sun. In truth, Kell was the more amenable to this because, as valuable as it was, the ruby was not the rarest of the gems. Several of the very oldjade pieces were worth twice as much. And the artifacts—the poor kid showed no interest at all in the artifacts, and they were worth more than the rest together.

Let the kid have his ruby, Kell thought, standing up. He too was shirtless, burned dark by the sun, almost the same dark mahogany as his hair. His Irish blue eyes were startling in his face. Tall, lean, handsome, at first glance Kellen Quinn appeared much closer to forty than fifty. Just a touch of rusty gray in his hair, stubble, a few wry lines around his eyes, belied his youthful appearance.

Kell walked to the back of the boat and leaned over to dip his neckerchief in the sea, wring it slightly, and tie back around his neck.

He glanced out to sea and paused.

"Company," he said.

Jamie slipped the ruby into his pocket but pushed the remaining stones back in the bag.

They were anchored in a large cove of a small island—unmapped, uninhabited, stunningly beautiful, like most of the scattered Andamans. The islands weren't on any shipping routes; and since the political upheaval in Burma they were no place for tourists or anyone else who lived by laws. But they were a very convenient place to rendezvous, to trade cargoes. To hide while you repaired a boat ...

As Jamie got a closer look at the small ship bearing down on them, he knew it was no pleasure cruiser.

A gunboat. His heart picked up pace.

"If it's military we're dead," Kell said. "Don't do anything foolish, lad."

Jamie glanced at him. He had considered swimming toshore—it wasn't close, but Jamie was a very good swimmer. He had been checked by the thought that Kell'd never make it. Kell had lived most of his life on the sea and couldn't have swum a horse pond. Besides that, as good as Jamie was, he'd be mowed down before he was halfway there. He knew about machine guns from the navy.

They could see who manned the ship now—not military, but certainly not civilians. Burmese, bare to the waist, loaded with ammo belts, carrying submachine guns and automatic rifles; most wore pistols, too.

Jamie thought briefly of their own pitiful arsenal—Kell's Luger, his own .38—he'd lost the M60 in that scuffle on the docks. Well, that didn't matter now, not against these guys. Anyway, neither he nor Kell was much at gunplay—both would rather use something else: Kell, words; Jamie, fists.

"Pirates," Kell said, and Jamie slipped the ruby out of his pocket and popped it into his mouth.

"You know, I thought I smelled a setup. Cahill was acting a wee bit peculiar."

"If so, we have a hope," Kell said. Jamie loved that about him: Kell always had a hope. "If they know what they're looking for and we make it easy for them to find it, they may leave us alive. After all, a third of the gross national product of Burma these days comes from smuggling; they don't want to scare off trade."

Jamie tried to picture himself and Kell as valuable economic factors ... then this abstract musing was crowded out by images of the different ways of dying Jamie had heard discussed ... .

He and Kell stood in plain sight on the back deck as the ship swung alongside of the little cruiser and a few of the machine-gunned thugs boarded.

Kell muttered, "If they think we're hiding something, they'll gut us to search our stomachs, without bothering to kill us first. So no tricks, lad ... . Welcome, gentlemen." Kell raised his voice in greeting, as if they were long-expected guests.

Jamie had second thoughts about swallowing his ruby; it remained in his mouth like a tasteless mint. There was no way to get it out without calling attention to himself.

He looked at the long, fish-gutting knives that hung from some of the ammo belts. Sucking the ruby helped his dry mouth. The sun and the glare gave him a headache. The sweat seemed to roll down his body in waves.

The pirates barely glanced at Kell and Jamie as they began a thorough search of the boat. Shouting at each other in some foreign babble, keeping any stray items they thought worth the trouble, the pirates systematically tore through the boat.

The leader found the leather bag and was examining the contents, piece by piece. One of the others opened Kell's leather duffel to sort through the artifacts.

The leader walked up to where Jamie and Kell stood sweating in the sun. He held out his hand and growled out something that sounded like "More!"

"Oh, you've got it all, sir, yes, that's the whole kit and caboodle, we'd not be holding out on you, would we, Jamie?"

Kell gave the leader a big smile, and Jamie a friendly slap on the back.

Jamie lurched forward, and in an effort not to swallow, he spit instead. The ruby shot out of Jamie's mouth, across the hot deck, and plopped into the azure water.

And breathing, "Holy shit!" Jamie ran two strides across the boat and dived in after it.

He'd spent weeks pearl diving when they'd been in the FrenchPolynesians, and the training paid off; in twenty-five feet of clear water, strangely devoid of the usual schools of bright fish, he swam down after the ruby. It was as bright as a drop of blood on the white sands. He fumbled for a minute, it jumped out of his fingers twice, then he swam to the top, the stone clenched tight in his fist.

"Hey," he yelled, shaking back his hair from his eyes. "I got it!"

He grinned at the cheering. Maybe this would buy their lives ...

"Jamie, look out!" Kell called.

Suddenly he got a feeling that the cheers were not for him.

The pirates were nudging each other, laughing, and pointing at something behind him, running and jostling for a better view, causing the small craft to list dangerously. Jamie looked behind him and saw the slick dark fin bearing down.

He turned and shot toward the boat. Almost immediately he was hit and tossed sideways. He came up swimming fast. In what seemed like a split second, another shove to the butt seemed to almost boost him into the boat, where Kell grabbed him under the arms and hoisted him onto the deck.

Jamie lay huddled, still clenching his fist, his eyes shut tight. He was choking out water, gasping in air.

"K-K-K-Kellen, is everything still on?"

For all he knew, he was missing a limb. He thought he could still feel his arm, his leg, but knew from other's stories that wasn't a reliable indication.

"Yes, Jamie, all your appendages are still attached, including the one you value most." Kell sounded like he was laughing.

Jamie uncurled and got shakily to his feet.

From the back of his right shoulder down to his elbow, the skin was rubbed off; and when the shark had brushed his rightleg it'd taken Jamie's pants off, as well as the hide of his buttock and upper thigh.

Jamie stood naked and bleeding and breathing hard with pain. He felt like he'd been skinned and dipped in salt water. He became aware that the pirates were watching him. Speculation? Admiration? He walked up to the leader without a trace of a limp and only a suggestion of a swagger.

"You missed one." He grinned. He held out the ruby and dropped it into the scar-seamed hand.

The pirates burst into guffaws of rowdy laughter, and Jamie knew he'd cheated death twice that day.

 

 

"Well, at least they didn't take the whiskey." Kell lay on the deck, studying the stars. He was propped up on his sea bag to take a swig from the bottle.

Jamie lay on his left side, shifting to find a comfortable position, but it was useless. He wasn't going to be able to sit for a week—unless his wounds stopped oozing by tomorrow, he'd sail into Sri Lanka naked.

Jamie took a long pull at the bottle. The pain was as bad as a severe burn, and Kell charitably didn't object to his taking more than his share.

Kell laughed. "By God, Jamie, that was the fastest swimming I've ever seen from a man. We'll have to work up a show—the Jamie Sommers Swimming and Comedy Act. Should be easy from now on—I'm sure you've played your toughest audience."

Jamie chuckled. He could imagine how funny he'd looked, shooting through the water. Kell said he'd been yelling, too, though he didn't remember that.

"Wonder why that shark didn't bite me?"

"Must have been a lady shark. The ladies always like to give you a good rub before they bite, hey, Jamie?"

Jamie grinned but didn't pursue that line of conversation, the ladies being a source of friendly, and sometimes not so friendly, competition between them.

(Besides the occasional competition, their styles were very different. Kell would invest in a long courtship if he had the time; the game was as enjoyable to him as the score. Jamie liked to get right to business, and in Kell's opinion, was too fast to pull out his wallet ... he was irritated by the fact that Jamie would spend money on what would be easily obtainable for free—

"A handsome young lad like yourself shouldn't have to pay a woman for sex."

"Ain't payin' 'em for sex. Payin' 'em to leave me alone, after."

Jamie was serious, but Kell roared, and often worked that conversation into a story, whether it fit or not.)

"No, Jamie, the shark didn't bite you for the same reason the pirates didn't gut you—your luck was with you today."

Jamie pondered that. In spite of everything, he knew it was true. They had no money, no cargo to trade, no jewels, damn little water, only this rust bucket between them and the schools of sharks, attracted by Jamie's blood, that swam in silent circles around the boat. Once in a while one would bump the boat, giving it a perversely gentle rocking motion.

And yet, his luck was with him. Kell was right about that.

"Well, Jamie, it's been a while since I first saw forty, and I'm getting too old for this line of work. I'm thinking of going to Monte Carlo, finding some rich widows who are susceptible tomy charms. If all else fails, I know of one in America who'll be amiable to my persuasions. You coming along, lad?"

A while since Kell had seen forty ... Jamie had a hard time believing Kell was that old. Probably because he had more energy than anyone Jamie had ever known. The talking alone Kell did would wear Jamie out.

"You're always welcome, you know—you're a scrapper, lad," Kell said. "A born scrapper. Grit. I like that in a man. I admired that about you the first day we met."

Jamie had taken on two guys in a Hawaiian bar, bested them both, mostly because they were drunk and by luck of the draw, he wasn't, and because he was small and very fast, and they were neither.

"Let me buy you a drink, young Jamie," Kell had offered, once the brawl was over.

Jamie took the drink gladly.

"So you're finished with the navy? And what plans do you have now? Well, it's always a good thing to have a plan—but I can see you're a man of action. I'm a man of thought. We could make a team, Jamie."

And then, "So you're familiar with the South China Sea? I have some prospects there. Oil, it'll be big there someday, Jamie. I know a man ..."

So Kell and Jamie shipped out together. Jamie loved Kell's way with words. He knew how to string them together, make them into weapons, music, dreams. On calm nights, in crew quarters, Kell's brogue would carry through the bunks. Stories, plans, bullshit so pleasant the sailors wished it the truth, forgave him the cons, scams, the cheats he tormented them with—Kell carried visions; they would have forgiven him much worse.

And Jamie, for the first time not lonely, would have forgiven him anything. But had much more sense than to trust him. They'd wandered together for a year, off and on, Kell busy with some business in Malaysia, Jamie working a cargo-liner run from Kota Kinabalu to Brunei, off Borneo, when Kell got wind of this fabulous deal, trading cargoes in Rangoon ... yes, Burma wasn't the safest of places right now, but it'd set them up for life, he said ... .

 

 

"Yeah," Jamie said now. He searched again for a comfortable position, but he bit back a groan at the pain. "I wouldn't mind a look at the French Riviera." He couldn't help it. "You got a plan after that?"

"We sell insurance in Baltimore."

Kell laughed when Jamie choked on his next gulp of whiskey.

"How much do you think those jewels were worth?" Jamie said, after a long silence.

"Millions, lad. Millions."

Jamie looked up at the stars. He liked the way they changed positions in different parts of the world.

Well, not many men had a chance to hold millions. He lay his head on his arm. He was content with being alive.

Terrace View Asylum, Delaware

JANUARY 1967

"So it's very unusual, for a shark to strike without biting?" Dr. McDevitt asked, in Jamie's next session.

"Yeah. Very. They'll bump you, but always bite. It was a lucky day, all right."

Jamie was quiet. The bright morning light came in the window. Then he said, "I haven't had one in a while."

Copyright © 2004 by S. E. Hinton

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 39 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 39 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Very Absorbing

    After being a fan of the Twilight Series, and loving the romantic side of vampires, it was really interesting to see a darker side of what has become so popluar now. Jamie's adventures were fun to read about, but his time with Grenville, was nothing short of terror. I was so glad that he overcame what he went through with his years in mental institutions and the fear and suffering had to go through while being devoted to a vampire. The ending was a touching way to tie up the storyline. A must read for anyone who loves a story of personal triumph and good overcoming evil.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 6, 2009

    A Review of "Hawkes Harbor" By S.E. Hinton

    This is a book of enjoyment. This book will definitely get your attention in the first couple of pages. I would recommend this book to adult audiences or mature teenagers. This book is definitely one that you will not want to put down until you finish it completely. I wanted to write this review so that you can see a different point of view of this book.

    Jamie is a 24 year old man with one troubling past. He gets in trouble in many ways, and escapes many of the punishments. He and is best bud Kell roam the world and commit many crimes along the way. This book kept me interested all the way.

    This is a book that has one lesson in it: Don't Trust Anyone. I have learned that before and hold strong to this. In this book, Jamie did trust one person and is forced to trust another. You will learn in many different ways to trust no one. Also, you must make sure that you keep your true friends.

    In conclusion, this book is mainly for enjoyment. I would definitely reread. This book will keep you interested with action, adventure, and a little mystery. I hope you will enjoy this book as much as I did.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 16, 2009

    Kill It with Fire and Holy Water

    Hawkes Harbor, written by S.E. Hinton, is a disjointed story with an uninspired and convoluted plot. The book center around one Jamie Summers, a twenty-five year old who starts the novel in a mental institution. Over the early course of the book, Jamie relieves amazing adventures on the high seas, to dangerous encounters in foreign prisons. However, all this changes when we begin to learn about Jamie's former employer who Jamie refers to as Greenville.
    Greenville seems to be a nice man, but the psychiatrist seems to think Jamie isn't telling him something. Before he can learn anymore though, Jamie is taken away by Greenville. At this point, we learn the big secret. Greenville is a seven hundred year old vampire. From this point the plot starts to make even less sense, and becomes a mismatch of Hollywood horror movie clichés.
    Though the start will leave you wanting more, by the end you'll be wishing it was over. Do yourself a favor and let Hawkes Harbor pass you by!

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2013

    Miranda smithberg

    She always has a phone in her hand playing buble worlds and getting on facebook she is a adict.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 20, 2012

    confused mjb

    This is a SERIES!?!?!?!?!????!:O

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2012

    timeline is a little confusing and some of the characters not fu

    timeline is a little confusing and some of the characters not fully realized, but maybe Hinton assumes the reader is familiar with her source material (Dark Shadows) and needn't bother. fun, entertaining adventure story I couldn't put down.

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  • Posted June 9, 2011

    This review won't spoil the whole surprise!!

    I started reading the book with one thing in mind: Outsiders. Being the only S.E. Hinton book I'd read (or heard of!) before finding Hawkes Harbor, I did have a limited, preconceived notion as to how Hawkes Harbor would be written and what it would feel like. But, I assure you, it's quite different. It is as everyone else has said: it's about a boy, Jamie, who travels the world with his older friend, Kell, until his advantures place him in the wrong place and his whole world changes. Hawkes Harbor is 251 pages long; it was on page 107 that everything changed for me. While the first 106 pages were entertaining enough, filled with "foreign prisons, smugglers, pirates, gunrunners, shark attacks," and more, the book was pretty easy going. Sometimes slow. I've put it down a few times to read other books, and still found it easy to pick back up and start where I left off. But, I'll tell you, what happens on page 107 threw me through a loop; suddenly the book has become more interesting. I don't know about anyone else who has read it, but I wasn't expecting what happened at all. Though I'd found the book sometimes slow-moving, I can't put it down; I will finish it! It's a hard book for me to suggest to anyone specific because of the way it straddles genres. But I suppose in a time where there's a market for the fusing of Jane Eyre and zombies and whatnot, it can appeal to anybody.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2010

    An interesting book that has a surprise ending.

    It was very interesting learning about Jamie's life and adventures. At Terrace View I learned so much about him and his life. I didn't expect him to have such an exciting life from his childhood, but that made the book even better. The characters were static and dynamic and Kell was always one of my favorites. I liked the book until the climax. I especially liked him while he was in Hawkes Harbor before het Grenville. Kell and Jamie had great adventures together, and I was sad when they came to an end. I didn't like the Hawkes family from the beginning, especially Grenville. Jamie was a tough kid who grew into an even tougher adult, and Grenville completely changed him. I felt bad when they talked about Eastern State and all the stories that came from there, but Dr. McDevitt was very kind and companionate. Jamie seemed to really open up and become closer to Grenville while they were on the cruise. Jamie seemed like he was his old self again. I wanted Jamie to leave Terrace View, but I knew he wasn't ready. Jamie's memories were very vivid all through the book. I thought it was very interesting and fun to read. I didn't like the ending and the surprise twist though. All of the characters were very different in some ways, but alike in others. I didn't like the horrible demise of the characters that didn't live until the end. Overall it was a very descriptive book that made me feel like I was in his stories; I also felt pure horror when he went to Hawkes Harbor. I will read more S.E. Hinton books in the future. The ending was a big surprise. I would read this book again, but I would already know the surprise so it wouldn't be as good. I wish Jamie would have never gotten shot, and Katie would have remembered what happened between them. I was very sad with what happened in the end, but I almost cried. Grenville had changed so much over the course of the book, and I'm glad it was for the better. I felt much better knowing Kell was with him in the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2010

    It's a vampire story for the sea-loving, psych or med student!

    I read every YA S.E. Hinton book. I'm working on her newer books. Interesting. I was surprised to find out it was a vampire story, and feel bad spoiling it for anyone else, but that could bring it a lot of popularity these days!!

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2008

    Good Read

    Once I made it beyond a few slow passages, I became completely absorbed in the story. Highly recommended for mature readers.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 12, 2008

    A must read, over and over

    This is the first book by S.E. Hinton that was directed towards an ADULT AUDIENCE and it was outstanding. There is so much emotion and mystery locked in the depths of this novel that it just blows me away. I love to reread books and this is my favorite to reread. Hinton needs to continue what she is doing because she excels at it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2008

    Different from the S E Hinton I read as a Teen

    I can't even believe that S E Hinton would write this. All writers are allowed at least one BAD book. This is Hinton's.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2008

    A reviewer

    about the person saying this book was 'porno', they are wrong. Besides it wasn't written for young adults. S. E. Hinton described that this was the first book that she wrote for an adult audience.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2007

    Interesting

    I love S.E. Hintons books and when I first started reading this I thought it was really weird, but then it really pulled me in. Its different from her other books, but it still has the emotional pull that you expect from her. I really recommend it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2007

    Hawkes Harbor: A must read novel

    For the past years, I've been enjoying S.E. Hinton's books. I have her full collection, except the child books. When I found out she had created a new book after, what, 15 years? I was EXCITED! I could barley contain myself! :D When I got Hawkes Harbor, I immediately started reading and I could not put down the book. The truth is, I'm not a reader. In most cases, I despise books. But S.E. Hinton brings life into her books-- and that's how I felt about Hawkes Harbor. Right away, the books pulls the reader in with questions and suspense. The first page was like a hook that dragged me throughout the vast ocean and never let go. The plot may not be a thick one, but the overall story is an atomic bomb, full of interesting events waiting to blow up in your face. Hinton brings life and animates her characters in ways that I can't even fathom. I especially love the relationship between Grenville and Jamie. It was very interesting to read about a Vampire and how his slave unwillingly obeys him. And yet, Jamie wants to please his master in every way possible. The pleasures of 'It's' (or Grenville-- Jamie called the vampire It)satisfaction created a utopia in Jamie's mind. The book is about relationships and the various people in life that you learn to cope with. These people can change your life in many different ways. The advances Kellen Quinn places on Jamie eventually leads him to Hawkes Harbor and thus he's created into a slave by his haunting meeting with the vampire. Like J.K.Rowling said on the back of the book, I wanted to repeat Jamie's shrilling cries, 'Don't let it be dark.... don't let it be dark.' The stories of Jamie and Kellen Quinn are exciting. Like pirate adventures out on sea, Hawkes Harbor is like a twisted Treaure Island, both compelling and enjoyable. Not to mention Jamie becomes a mental patient and must live some of his years in the hospital. I feel for Jamie whenever he turns crazy and becomes completely terrified at sunset. As a young adult novel, I wasn't surprised to read the explicit sexual scenes... although I did not care much about those. Surprisingly, funny scnenes are created from these events that keep me laughing for days whenever I think about them. 'So, Grenville.... you'rs give good head?' To think that Grenville would react in such a way by spitting out his drink and half-laughing stumped me, yet I loved him for it. Hinton leaves a horrible ending like the rest of her books that leaves me both angry and bewildered. There's always a death in one of my favorite characters. If you'd like to find out who dies-- read the book!!! Hawkes Harbor presents horror, excitement, suspense, wonder, and hilarious histaria that will leave you re-reading this enjoyable book for years. So far, I've already read the book 5 times. It seems I will never put the book down and will always treaure it as a Must Read Book for years to come.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2006

    pure porno

    The events described graphically in this book frightened me, because of the number of young people who may read it and learn of deviate sexual practices. In no way do these encounters add to the story- it's just a sad commentary on the degradation of young adult fiction!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2006

    Dont let it be dark

    i was yellling as i read dont let it be dark you can fell yourself in the book as you read. This book is like a roller coster i love it the ending is like when your roller coster stops and your happy as can be

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 19, 2006

    Weird

    I wasn't expecting a vampire story from S. E. Hinton. It was so incredibly different from The Outsiders. The first half of the story was great but the whole sci-fi thing just ruined it for me. It wasn't thrilling.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2006

    Awesome read!

    This is one of best books I have read since... well since The Outsiders. (And that was 7th grade!) Jamie is a reflection of our fears and dreams. It is all a dream within a dream.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2006

    Left me speechless!

    I first read S.E. Hinton at sixteen when I found The Outsiders on my mother's bookshelf. I'm twenty-two now and Hinton's books are still some of my favorites. I was so surprised and excited when I found that she wrote a new book, but I had no idea what to expect. Hawkes Harbor with it's adult themes, jumping time line and truly otherworldly feel (after all Rumble Fish for all it's strangeness - Rusty James was for the most part grounded in the now) is a departure from her others, and yet the spark to make you care deeply for every character is there. You're with Jamie every step of the way though all the high, low and under the dirt points in his amazing life. Hawkes Harbor punched me in the gut the same way the Outsiders did when I was sixteen. S.E. Hinton still has it and I hope we hear more from her in the near future!

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