Tag Archives: books with pirates

Review : The Ship of Shadows by Maria Kuzniar

Middle-grade review of The Ship of Shadows by Maria Kuzniar

The Ship of Shadows (The Ship of Shadows, #1)Goodreads Blurb

Aleja whiles away her days in her family’s dusty tavern in Seville, dreaming of distant lands and believing in the kind of magic that she’s only ever read about in books. After all, she’s always being told that girls can’t be explorers.

But her life is changed forever when adventure comes for her in the form of a fabled vessel called the Ship of Shadows. Crewed by a band of ruthless women, with cabin walls dripping with secrets, the ship has sailed right out of a legend. And it wants Aleja.

Once on board its shadowy deck, she begins to realize that the sea holds more secrets than she ever could have imagined. The crew are desperately seeking something, and their path will take them through treacherous waters and force them to confront nightmare creatures and pitch-dark magic. It will take all of Aleja’s strength and courage to gain the trust of her fellow pirates – and discover what they are risking everything to find.

My Thoughts after Reading

This middle-grade adventure book is about a girls-only pirate ship sailing the oceans blue in search of a treasure map.

Our heroine discovers a secret and this knowledge puts her life in danger. In the chase she meets a captain who offers to hide her in her ship for a few hours. Unfortunately it was still unsafe for Aleja to disembark and she ends up travelling to the far lands with the crew.

This book has everything: a magical ship, an ancestor with a mysterious legacy, cryptic puzzles, strange beasts from the sea and land, exotic locations of towns and deserts and of course, swash-buckling life at sea. What I liked about this book is how all the characters have their own strengths eg linguist, chemist, technologist, soldier, strategist. Together they made a great team.

If you like the sound of this, you might be pleased to know that this is the first book of a series. 3/5

Review : Mr Tiger, Betsy and the Sea Dragon by Sally Gardner

Middle-grade book review of Mr. Tiger, Betsy, and the Sea Dragon by Sally Gardner

Mr. Tiger, Betsy, and the Sea DragonMy rating: 4 of 5 stars

My Thoughts after Reading

The ebook I read is in blue ink. The colour and font was easy to the eye.

This is a whimsical book. Imagine our female protagonist as a child of Han Christian Anderson’s The Little Mermaid, that is, the happy ending version. In this story, the girl has a mermaid mother, who still has her fishtail. Her father is human. He carries their mother when she needs to go about the house. She either sits in a bucket or in the bathtub. If you enjoyed watching Little Mermaid 2, you will like this book. If you have read the middle grade book Ingo by Helen Dunmore, this book is the chapter book version.

The words in this book are well-chosen and bring the story to life. Humour is sprinkled in every page. The characters are adorable, like the pastry-chef working in the ship’s galley. This is the perfect read for lower primary children, a popular age for pirates, dragons and mermaids. And this book has them all.

Goodreads Blurb

Award-winning author Sally Gardner delivers another whimsical tale about the daughter of a mermaid and an ice cream maker, a mysterious talking tiger, and a search for a sea dragon’s magical underwater orchard in this second book in the Mr. Tiger series.

From a magical world of well-dressed animals, talking toads, and bossy princesses comes a fresh tale of Mr. Tiger, Betsy K. Glory, and a wicked pirate in search of golden apples. A rare egg has gone missing and a very unhappy sea dragon wants it back. It’s time for Mr. Tiger, Betsy, and the Gongalongs to set sail on their second adventure.