Sunday, September 9, 2012

Book #253: Pirateria: The Wonderful Plunderful Pirate Emporium by Calef Brown

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Where do pirates get the latest fashion in hooks and eye patches? Where can they go to find the best cutlasses and scimitars? Why, Pirateria, of course! You’ll see pirates of all shapes and sizes trying on the latest “duds for saber clashers” and sneak attack disguises. Browse the aisles of this amazing store that puts the “arg” in “bargain.”

Brown’s rhyming text is humorous and clever, full of word play and pirate jargon sure to delight readers of all ages. The acrylic illustrations include witty details and pirates of both genders. Brown has a unique color palate that features lots of muddy greens and plumy purples. I also enjoy the endpapers, which shows more Pirateria wares rendered in light browns and yellows. Although the book lacks a plot, the pace of the text is brisk and readers will turn pages to find out what else this wonderful, plunderful pirate emporium sells.

You can read this book from cover to cover or you can read a few pages at a time because some of the pages read like short poems. There will be words, of the regular and pirate varieties, that will probably need to be defined for young readers. Use an online pirate dictionary or better yet, have kids research and write their own.

Use this book for a storytime that celebrates Talk Like a Pirate Day (September 19). Pair with pirate books, such as How I Became a Pirate and Do Pirates Take Baths? Follow up with songs and rhymes like, Yo Ho! Yo Ho! (to the tune of Heigh Ho), Five Little Pirates, and I’m a Little Pirate.

One of the best parts of playing pirates is dressing up. Cut fabric scraps into squares to make pirate bandanas or make pirate hats out of newspaper and construction paper. Make eye patches from felt or craft foam and elastic. If your child has pants they have outgrown or worn out, cut the bottoms in a large zigzag pattern to make pirate pants. Find an over-sized striped shirt (check your local thrift store) and cut it into a pirate vest.

Brown has two websites, one that focuses on his children’sbooks and another that includes artwork that he has created for magazines, murals, posters, etc.


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