Jane Yolen gives us girl villains and treachery that can easily stand up to their male counterparts. She does a good job separating what we know and what must be left to speculation with regard to the sketchy details of pirating. The sidebar additions of geography, history, facts and rumor add depth and spark further interest. Illustrator Christine Joy Pratt’s woodcut-styled illustrations add much delight.
It’s especially helpful that the pirates are depicted in chronological order lending reference to the historical context of piracy. The end features a bibliography, as well as websites for further research. The large text is fairly simple and, though I’ve not completed a readability count, I suspect it would work well with the early independent reader while meeting the interest level for an older student with a curiosity about pirate lore.
Jane Yolan has written two additional pirate themed books which might work well in a compare and contrast context: The Ballad of the Pirate Queens & Pirates In Petticoats.
A stunning addition to Yolen’s fantastic body of work and a must for pirate book collector’s Sea Queens is a book you’ll want to check out.
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Genre: Historical Nonfiction. Age: Pages: 9-12. 112.
Themes:Piracy, History, Daring
Thank You to The Picnic Basket.
Publisher: Charlesbridge. Date: June 2008.
ISBN-10: 1580891314 / ISBN-13: 978-1580891318
Buy Sea Queens HERE
Fuse #8 School Library Journal review
More on the publisher, Charlesbridge, site.
Jane Yolen thinks she has written more than 280 books. She has been awarded many honors. She seems to have acquired the storytelling gene as she has been called both "America's Hans Christian Andersen" and "a modern equivalent of Aesop." You can read more about her on Penguin Publishing's website or on her own.
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