TOM CRINGLE by Gerald Hausman

TOM CRINGLE

Battle on the High Seas
Age Range: 11 - 13

KIRKUS REVIEW

A 13-year-old British midshipman logs seven months of rip-roaring nautical adventure, experiencing hurricane, shipwreck, fever, earthquake, kidnapping, sea fights, and plenty more. Pleased to find himself aboard the sloop Bream, with its “beams imbued with mackerel-stink; and a rottenness that comes of boiled rags mixed with the sweet fetor of things decomposing out of sight,” Tom ships out with an array of disreputable shipmates, including Peter Mangrove, one-legged former slave of Lord Nelson. Their goal is to protect Caribbean-merchant shipping from piratical Americans and other unsavory sorts. Thanks to sharp eyes and a knack for survival, Tom quickly rises to Lieutenant—despite at one point being caught between loyalty to the Crown and his attraction to the magnificent pirate Obediah, an Afro-Portuguese native of Glasgow. Hausman (Doctor Bird, 1998, etc.) bases his tale on two historical novels of the 1830s, one of which may have inspired the young Robert Louis Stevenson. Like Geraldine McCaughrean’s Pirate’s Son (1998), this grand mix of pulse-pounding action, vivid language, exotic locales, and colorful characters fits firmly in the tradition of Treasure Island. (Fiction. 11-13)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-689-82810-1
Page count: 224pp
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2000




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