The Beastly Pirates – John Kelly



Allen & Unwin Australia

Bloomsbury Children Imprint

February 2015

ISBN 9781408849859

RRP $14.99

Shiver the timbers of your younger readers with this wonderfully witty and rollicking rhyming story about the scurviest pirates you’ve ever encountered!

This just begs to be read aloud with lots and lots of vocal expression. It is chockful of onomatopoeia and alliteration which make it even more marvellous for a story time experience that is thrilling and just scary enough to be exciting. The use of interesting variations in font size along with the use of vocabulary which will extend the reader’s repertoire add appeal to an independent reading as well, so this book has it covered from both angles.

The Beastly Captain Snapper

Is most hideous and vile.

A one-eyed, cutlass-toting

Pirate-eating crocodile.


With a body hard and muscled,

Covered head to toe in scales,

His colossal snout is four feet long,

And full of teeth like nails.

John Kelly’s illustrations are bold and detailed providing a visual feast to accompany the text. Humour abounds such as when the nasty pirates are eating crumpets and cupcakes contrasting with the next spread when the next pirate is served up with spaghetti and ragu, after an altercation with the Kraken.

This will make a terrific addition to any picture book collection – whether home or school. It certainly was well received here!

Highly recommended for young readers from about 6/7 years up.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s