Reading/Interest Level: Primary
Author: April Jones Prince
Illustrator: Steven Salerno
Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux Books for Young Readers
Mama Pirate, Papa Pirate, and Baby Pirate live happily on their ship, though minor things are falling apart. A stool and hammock lie broken and the food never tastes very good. One day, while they are on land getting supplies, a young lass named Goldenlocks finds their ship and climbs aboard. She tastes the gruel and finds that Papa’s is too hot, Mama’s is too cold, but the Baby’s is just right. Adding a bit of spice, it even tastes good! After trying out their stools and hammocks, Goldenlocks falls asleep on board. The pirates return and find that many of the necessary repairs have been fixed and their gruel tastes good! When they find Goldenlocks, instead of throwing her overboard as originally planned, they offer her a job and now live as four pirates on a seaworthy sloop.
This is a fun twist on the traditional story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Everyone knows the familiar fairytale, but change the setting and characters a bit and you have a brand new adventure! With spirited freebooters and lively pirate language, the tale takes an exciting turn as a wandering Goldenlocks boards their ship. The illustrations are entertaining and characteristic of pirate portrayals, adding the overall feeling of being out at sea with the crew. The story follows the original plotline closely enough to be considered a derivative work, but is different enough to grab children’s attention and keep it. It even includes a glossary of pirate terms at the back, so your bonny lads and lasses can learn to speak like a pirate. Clever and engaging, this book is sure to be a hit for your pirate-loving children!