If there is a pirate obsessed child in your life here are some books you can find in the children’s section of the library:
- Shiver Me Timbers by Douglas Florian is a collection of poems perfect to read aloud to the littlest pirates as they
- In Pirate Mom by Deborah Underwood a little boy’s mother is hypnotized into thinking she is a pirate. How can he change his Mom back? A Maryland Blue Crab Young Reader Award winner.
- Eloise’s Pirate Adventure by Lisa McClatchy is perfect for little girls who aspire to the pirate life. Eloise dresses up as a pirate and goes on an adventure in search of treasure.
- And don’t forget the classics Peter Pan and Treasure Island, both perfect for reading aloud a chapter at a time at bedtime.
- Pirates: Robbers of the High Seas by Gail Gibbons is a simple nonfiction introduction to the real history of pirates for younger children.
- Older children will enjoy Pirate by Richard Platt, one of the lavishly illustrated Eyewitness book series, and How to be a Pirate by John Malam.
You can find more children’s nonfiction books about pirates by exploring the shelves in the J910.45 section. And the children's librarians will be happy to recommend more pirate-themed fiction for specific ages.
There is some serious history behind the popular image of the swashbuckling pirate, some of it surprising. Quite how violent criminals of the past became beloved children’s characters is an interesting story in itself. (J.M. Barrie and Johnny Depp surely share some of the responsibility). Here is a sampling of some of the books for adults that explore this fascinating history:
- Under the Black Flag: The Romance and the Reality of Life Among the Pirates by David Cordingly sets the record straight on just how unromantic were the lives of real pirates.
- The Pirates’ Pact: The Secret Alliances Between History’s Most Notorious Buccaneers and Colonial America by Douglas R. Burgess Jr. reveals a little known story from early America.
- The Pirates of Somalia: Inside Their Hidden World by Jay Badhadur examines today’s pirates, putting into perspective how we have rewritten the past to make it more palatable for young minds.
Meanwhile I’m going to be watching Jake and the Neverland Pirates (or Ho Ho Pi as my grandson calls it) until he moves on to a new enthusiasm. But it has its uses. With some of my imaginary gold doubloons I purchased Jake the Pirate underwear as an incentive for potty training!
Image: "End of a Pirate's Day" by ecstaticist on Flickr