Monday, July 31, 2006

Polly and the Pirates, v. 1

by Ted Naifeh
Published by Oni Press

Slugline: Polly, the long lost daughter of the Pirate Queen, is far too prim and proper for the treacherous world of pirates -- or is she?

This one jumps high on my list of books I would hand to any kid, any where, any time, and tell them to read. It lands, in fact, right next to the Courtney Crumrin series, also by Ted Naifeh.

Both Polly and Courtney have excellent adventures, NOT oversimplified, NOT oversweetened, just the right mix of cleverness and honor and humor for all-ages readers.

Polly is whisked from her boarding school into the world of pirates and treasure maps and at first she wants nothing to do with it. She even betrays her mother's former crew before she comes around. But she does show her true colors and outfox the foxes, find the treasure and mend her mistakes.

Ted Naifeh is a San Francisco resident, so he works nice historical bits like the Emperor of the United States into the story (though it's not set in San Fran.) And the art is lovely and whimsical, but I could live without the written brogues a few characters speak in. It's a minor quibble, though, in an otherwise excellent read.

- Miranda

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