Saturday 6 May 2017

Pirates: Dead Men's Tales by Anne Rooney (age 9+) Book Review

Pirates: Dead Men's Tales is written by Anne Rooney and illustrated by Joe Wilson, and is one of the most gorgeous children's books we've ever reviewed. A larger format book beautifully bound with an embossed cover, it feels as special in your hand as it looks.

The illustrations are muted and resemble the illustrations on old maps, together with the off-white pages and textured cover, it gives the illusion of real age and makes it quite unusual.

The contents page is really different, with a small illustration showing what you'll find on each double page as well as a title. This is a fact book and covers pirates from across the ages, from all around the world. It isn't all about glamour and treasure...

The illustrations are bold and clear, with loads of detail and fantastic maps and other reference drawings, so that the text is really well supported. My 8 1/2 year old can read about the pirates while looking at the map - giving a far better idea of where the pirates were and what they were up to than just saying 'in the Caribbean'.

Lots of famous male and female pirates have their own pages in Pirates: Dead Men's Tales and the true stories are told without masses of gore or glitz. They actually all had very hard lives, rarely ended up rich and happy and really you wonder was it worth all of that effort!

This is a great fact book for any child 9+ to read independently. I've also learned several new facts, including locations and timelines of legendary pirates and the thing which surprised me the most - the scale of their operations. I always assumed they had 2 or 3 ships, but they could operate huge fleets and travel a long way around the globe...

Pirates: Dead Men's Tales is packed full of all kinds of information to keep any young pirate entertained and answer those burning questions about life on board with Captain Kidd, Blackbeard or Zheng Shi.

There are some really tricky words and the text is slightly more grown up, reflecting well the 9+ suggested age and giving any independent learner some food for thought - and things to Google!

Pirates: Dead Men's Tales is published by Carlton Kids and available now from all good bookstores instore and online rrp £14.99. Direct from Carlton Books it is currently on offer at £11.24. Hardbacked, 64 pages.

If your pirate fans are a little younger then you may prefer the Pirate Ship Sticker Book (6+) or the enormous Wiplii Cardboard Pirate play Ship !(3+)

We were sent our copy of Pirates: Dead Men's Tales for review.

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