Gideon Defoe,
The Pirates! In an Adventure with the Romantics
(Vintage, 2012)

They're pirates in name only.

The title characters of Gideon Defoe's The Pirates! In an Adventure with the Romantics don't engage in much piratical behavior, and although they're on a ship for much of the story, you won't get much sense of shipboard life or the workings of sails and rigging.

These pirates are pirates only so much as is needed to further the humor of the book, which is the fifth in Defoe's ongoing series of pirate adventures.

Don't worry too much about having missed earlier books in the series, as each seems to stand alone fairly well. At least, it's been a few years since I read the first book in the set, and I was worried I'd be lost -- but no, it was easy as pie to pick up with these characters and enjoy yet another adventure in their company.

In this case, the pirate captain -- apparently named Pirate Captain -- takes aboard three passengers seeking thrills: the poets Lord George Byron and Percy Shelley, and Shelley's fiancee and budding author Mary Godwin. Rhyming menus aside, the adventure gets off to a tame start -- the trio is unimpressed by a daring naked seal rescue -- but quickly takes off once they decide to unravel the riddle of the Pirate Captain's mysterious belly tattoo.

This is the sort of book that suffers from too much exposition. There isn't much logic or sense to it all, just a whole lot of silly fun wrapped in piratical trappings.

book review by
Tom Knapp

11 August 2012

Agree? Disagree?
Send us your opinions!

what's new