SUMMARY: Captain Jack, Zack and Caspar create an imaginary ship out of sand in which they have grand adventures. Will the pirates catch up to them in the end?
ILLUSTRATIONS: The illustrations have a very soft look making them perfect for a bedtime story. They are colorful, but also have wonderful contrast with the darker imaginary pirate ship and the pencil sketches as the boys build their ship.
THE GOOD: For a pirate or ship lover, there is quite a bit of rich vocabulary including bosun, mainmast, prow, unfurl and galleon. The rhyming was well done and the story had great flow that can keep the reader's interest from beginning to end. There are plenty of adorable illustrations including the ever present teddy bear. And of course, most importantly, there are pirates!
THE NOT AS GOOD: This book follows on the heels of King Jack and the Dragon--a story about three very little boys who engage in beautiful imaginary play and battle a dragon. That adventure was age appropriate for the boys who appear to be about 2 for the youngest one and 4 or 5 for the other two. This new story has an adventure that doesn't fit the age of the boys. They appear to be on the beach alone and although the boat they make out of sand and "stuff" is pretty crude, I still can't see children this little accomplishing this major feat. Nor do I see them using a good deal of the words describing their boat. To add to my confusion about the age appropriateness, on the final page, when the boys are dried and dressed, the two older boys look more like they could be 6 or 7 which would have fit this particular story very well. This all makes it very difficult to say what age group this story is most appropriate for. The illustrations are perfect for the youngest crowd, the story is great for ages 5-8, but would the older kids want to read a picture book with main characters who look like babies?
AGE RECOMMENDATION: It is very difficult to say what age group this story is most appropriate for. The illustrations are perfect for the youngest crowd, the story is great for ages 5-8, but would the older kids want to read a picture book with main characters who look like babies?
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