CM . . . . Volume XVII Number 12. . . .November 19, 2010.
The Pirate Who Lost his Aarrr!
Crystal J. Stranaghan. Illustrated by Marcus Wild.
Vancouver, BC: Gumboot Books, 2009.
44 pp., pbk., $16.99.
Grades 1-4 / Ages 6-9.
Review by Sherry Faller.
This seemed a tad excessive for one innocent mistake.
To use that voice on his own crew, was more than they could take.
The pirates were upset with him - but all of them kept quiet.
They thought someone should speak to him, but no one dared to try it.
Avast ye mates! If ye be searchin' for a pirate tale, this book be for you!
The Pirate Who Lost His AARRR! is a story told in poetry form about a pirate who grew up saying 'AARRR!' right from his crib. Throughout his adventures, his loud voice was his strongest asset until one fateful day when he lost his voice. There are lessons to be learned about straining one's voice and mistreating friends.
The text is written in rhyming couplets which are sometimes forced. Many words would have to be explained to a younger audience, thereby interrupting the rhythm of the text. Some pirate jokes at the beginning of the book help to introduce the pirate theme.
The pages are designed to look like an ancient map with an interesting game of dice somewhat like snakes and ladders along the bottom. For example, if you land on #24, you are to "Stop to pick up supplies. Roll a 3 to continue." Children would probably play the game after first reading the story. The colourful computer images tend to be dark, and some could be frightening for small children. The word "AARRR!" printed across the pictures encourages children to join in when reading the book is read aloud.
Pirate-lovers would enjoy this humorous adventure.
Sherry Faller is a teacher-librarian in Winnipeg, MB.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
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