Pirateria: The Wonderful Plunderful Pirate Emporium

Calef Brown, Author, Calef Brown, Illustrator
Calef Brown. S&S/Atheneum, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4169-7878-7
Reviewed on: 06/04/2012
Release date: 07/10/2012
Portable Document Format (PDF) - 40 pages - 978-1-4424-3897-2
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Brown (Boy Wonders) makes an enthusiastic sales pitch for Pirateria, where “we put the ‘arg’ in ‘bargain’!” His infomercial narrative beckons scurvy shoppers to queue up for “Spinnakers, jibs, and rope in hanks;/ solid maple walking planks.... And this just in: a fresh batch of eye patches!/ Two per package to prevent mismatches.” (An eye-patch color chart offers options like “bilge water gray,” “moby white,” and “dreaded red.”) The Yo Ho Hosiery and Footwear department offers single shoes for peglegs, and another aisle features message bottles, since “pirates expect to be shipwrecked.” Grudges are to be left at sea (“Attention buckos, oafs, and toughs./ You’ll walk the plank if we spy fisticuffs”), and grumpy buccaneers roam Pirateria’s food court. Brown merges pirate lore and consumer frenzy in his upbeat, clever rhymes; he even lists a BOGO galleon special and a night class in “protecting your booty.” His dingy paintings of surly scalawags become a bit monotonous—prepare for a surplus of buckle shoes and bandanas, muddled purple grays and murky seaweed greens—but pirate fans will yearn to shop here. Ages 4–8. Agent: Jennifer Laughran, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. (July)
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