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SEA QUEENS by Jane Yolen Kirkus Star

SEA QUEENS

Women Pirates Around the World

By Jane Yolen (Author) , Christine Joy Pratt (Illustrator)

Age Range: 9 - 14

Pub Date: July 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-1-58089-131-8
Publisher: Charlesbridge

Piracy wasn’t pretty, but sometimes it was sanctioned. It was always bloody and sometimes lucrative. Yolen tells the tales of 13 female pirates, from Persia to China, from 500 years before the Common Era to the 19th century. Not only does she tell them vividly, she also strives to untangle fact from fiction, history from legend, highlighting the telling details that will draw kids in. Alfhild of Denmark, for instance, kept a pet viper to ward off would-be suitors. Jeanne the Lioness of Brittany sold her castles and lands, outfitted three ships and attacked French vessels along the coast of Normandy to avenge her murdered husband. Rachel Wall was the last woman to be hanged on Boston Common, in 1789. A concluding “Roundup” includes a list of women pirates about whom only a few sentences are known. This volume is very prettily produced, with Pratt’s gorgeous pen-and-ink-on-scratchboard illustrations and tailpieces. Sidebars with further tidbits, definitions, legends and historical records embellish the pages. Young pirate princesses (and princes) will be dazzled. (Nonfiction. 9-14)