AHOY, UNCLE ROY! by Sarah Albee


Road to Reading: Mile 2
by & illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 7
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Walter is a modern boy in jeans and baseball cap who describes his uncle Roy’s ideal “job” as the captain of a pirate ship in this mildly amusing but ultimately unsuccessful mid-level easy reader. The narrator might be a 21st-century boy, but the pirates must be from a previous century because they’re clearly not a politically correct crew: lots of peg legs and eye patches, no ethnic diversity, and no women crew members. (Historically, there were a few women pirates.) The only female in the story is the narrator’s mother, shown in her dress and apron serving coffee to her husband, who is relaxing in his easy chair. Most problematic is the boss of all the pirates, who has a hook replacing one hand, a particular point of objection for advocates for the physically disabled, who have strongly objected to the negative stereotyping of prosthetic devices on pirates first evidenced with Captain Hook in Peter Pan. Albee’s (The Oreo Cookie Counting Book, not reviewed, etc.) text has a controlled vocabulary, but there is no structured pattern as stated in the specifications on the back cover for this level of easy reader. The text is not predictable from the illustrations, and much of the dry humor (Uncle Roy’s “office has a great view”—the ocean from the deck of the ship) will not be easily understood by new readers. (Easy reader. 5-7)

Pub Date: July 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-307-26216-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Golden Books/Random
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2001


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