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Backbeard: Pirate for Hire by Matthew McElligott
Cover Artist: Matthew McElligott
Review by Gayle Surrette
Walker Books for Young Readers Hardcover  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780802796325
Date: 21 August 2007 List Price $16.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK

Links: Author's Website / Show Official Info /

Backbeard has been called before the Pirate Council. Backbeard and his crew must dress like a pirate, wear "official" pirate hats, have a parrot (no pigs allowed) or he can't be a pirate any more. So Backbeard sets off to find a job -- he's got lots of pillaging and plundering experience -- it shouldn't be that hard should it?

Inside cover is the original Pirates' Rules while the inside back cover is the amended version (makes you think Backbeard has a hand in that doesn't it). The Back cover is Backbeard's resume and impressive it is -- for a pirate. The drawings are colorful, humorous, interesting, and made me appreciate the hard job pirates have when they decide to change jobs midlife.

Fantasy -- pretty much, how many pirates are around nowadays with a pig for a mascot and a crew that wants to be stylish when pillaging. Children should get a giggle out of Backbeard's adventures in job hunting. Parents or adult readers will get a kick out of the plays on words and slight innuendo to the actions.

Sometimes, we just need to stick with what makes us happy -- even if we don't adhere to all the rules. Doesn't this mean you should question authority? Hmmm.

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