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Thursday, April 23, 2015

Shivers! The Pirate Who's Afraid of Everything by Annabeth Bondor-Stone & Connor White

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, we're diving into a Kids Fiction title that will have you battening down the hatches and keeping your shoulder at the ready for your best mate to land. It's a pirate tale but not in the traditional sense that's fit for the wee land lubbers as well as the more time tested folks running about this here part of the blogosphere. Ready to make its acquaintance? Just say, ARRRRRHH! Ladies and gents, pirates and pir-ettes, today's book of choice is....

The Pirate Who's Afraid of Everything
Annabeth Bonder-Stone & Connor White
Illustrated by
Anthony Holden
Based on a really funny idea by
Harrison Blanz, Age 9

About the book...

Meet Shivers, the scaredy-est pirate to ever sail the Seven Seas. Along with his best friend, Margo, and his loyal fishmate (yes, you read that correctly), Albee, Shivers battles a giant squid, discovers hidden treasures, and gets pooped on by a pigeon to save his parents from the clutches of evil. (Yep, that's right: evil!) You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll never eat snails again. So put on your pantaloons, batten down the hatches, and join Shivers on his first (but still very dangerous) adventure.

This was a whale of a tale if ever there was!

Shivers is a land loving pirate, much too scared to venture out on the high seas, until one very unfortunate day for his family and one feisty girl named Margo come together to create an adventure of a lifetime. Nothing like family in peril and the making of a friend to give you just the right motivation to crawl out of the shell you're living in, am I right? So naturally, Shivers sets forth with gusto to save the day....

Knock Knock
Who's there?
You who?
You weren't apparently listening to me when I originally described him now, were you?

Shivers is anything but weigh-the-anchor-let's-get-this-excursion-under-way, but he also knows that his family's lives are in his hands. What's a scared lad to do? Seek out the authorities, that's what! Bad news for him, they seem unmoved; good news for him, Margo (the captain's daughter) is a little firecracker who's been paying attention every Take You Child to Work Day (whether actually the holiday or simply a day she tricked him into THINKING it was). Apart, they are definitely unusual individuals, but together they are an unstoppable pair. Now, don't get me wrong, things DO try to stop them many a time so it does look as if all might not end well (can't confirm if it does or doesn't...sorry), but they still form a formidable team. The fact that they also discovered that friendship doesn't spawn from the likenesses we have with each other, but the differences that make us who we are is just icing on the cake.

At first I wasn't sure if I was going to enjoy this tale as I was having a hard time connecting with Shivers. I mean really, the kid is afraid of EVERYTHING! Hard to swallow, especially when he's from a family of pirates....I mean, I was ready to think “adoption” might have been the answer. Leave it to the ending to change my mind. That's right. Right up until about the final fourth of the book, I was ready to give it a resounding “meh” but then came the turning point which turned me around. What did the job? Oh, it was all in unraveling of the situation at hand, though at whose hand and why it unraveled will have to remain a mystery until you read it for yourself. Suffice it to say that one should never underestimate the strength of someone's fear nor a foe based on their size. The latter of those provided an unexpected laugh out loud moment as well, leaving me to end the read with a smile upon my face.

Recommended for Middle Grade readers through adults. Fans of the Wimpy Kid and MacKenzie Blues series will definitely gravitate towards it for the similarity in formatting (story with lots of pencil illustrations), though it is certainly not necessary to enjoy the adventure within.

Special thanks to the team at HarperCollins for the chance to bring this title to you as well as the review copy. (THANKS!) For more information on this title as well as their growing catalog, be sure to stop by their official site, like them on Facebook, or follow along on Twitter. This title reached its book birthday February 2015, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.

Until next time...happy reading!


Tracy Terry said...

Sounds like a fun take on the whole pirate thing. My friend's little boys would love this.

Barbara S said...

By the way id never eat smails any way. What a fun book for an early spring summer day when the kids are off. Thanks to this fine writer we need more

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