After her mother dies, 15-year-old Catherine is determined to join her father, a pirate captain, on the high seas. She romanticizes his secret life and yearns for adventure (having been cooped up for most of her life), but Catherine is in for a rude awakening. With her father's help, Catherine goes aboard the Reprisal ("The shining, sleek shape of her. The way she seemed to lean forward, headed for adventure and ports unknown," swoons Catherine) disguised as a boy. While headstrong Catherine is capable of holding her own, challenges remain: the men are coarse, she falls for William (the ship's cook), and the constant threat of being found out hangs over her head. Additionally, the creepiest pirate, Herc, is after a mysterious object her father possesses. While Bunting's story and characters may seem tame to readers who have grown up with the over-the-top portrayals of pirate life in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, the book is fast-paced and offers sufficient action, intrigue, and romance to hold interest. There are several scenes of violence, but they are not gratuitous. Ages 12–up. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/24/2011 Release date: 02/01/2011 Genre: Children's
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