________________ CM . . . . Volume XXII Number 31. . . .April 15, 2016


The Pop Star Pirates. (Race Further with Reading).

Maggie Pearson. Illustrated by Dan Chernett.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2015.
48 pp., pbk. & hc., $10.95 (pbk.), $23.49 (RLB).
ISBN 978-0-7787-2113-0 (pbk.), ISBN 978-0-7787-2089-8 (RLB).

Grades 1-3 / Ages 6-8.

Review by Myra Junyk.

**˝ /4



They built a pirate ship out of planks of wood and old car tires and empty barrels. Every night they dreamed of sailing the seven seas and having adventures and stealing boatloads of treasure.

Every day they lazed around...
...and swam in the sea...
and played their music.


The Pop Star Pirates is part of the “Race Further with Reading” series. This entertaining musical pirate story will help young transitional readers learn new vocabulary and build their reading skills. Guided reading levels are indicated on the back cover of each book in this series.

      The “three bold pirates: One-eyed Jake, Blackbeard and Peg-leg Pete” run away from home to escape their chores. Their mothers did not allow them to play loud music at home. They travel to a hidden cove where they laze around, swim and play their music as loud as they like. After building a pirate ship, they dream of exciting adventures.

      One day, a ship appears in their cove. At first, the pirates want to scare away the intruders. However, the visitor turns out to be Bonnie-Ann who invites the pirates to become part of her crew. Bonnie-Ann sings and dances at the pirate camp, but soon she decides that they must start to learn real pirate skills. The process of becoming real pirates involves a great deal of exercise and training. Will they continue to listen to Captain Bonnie-Ann, or will they revolt against her leadership?

      Readers will enjoy the antics of the would-be pirates who laze about the beach as they dream of possible adventures. However, in the end, even the young pirates get bored with doing nothing. They decide to use their musical skills to become a “pop star pirate” band aboard the passenger steamer Skylark. Readers will learn that using your skills in a positive way is important to a worthwhile life.

      The books in the “Race Further with Reading” series are designed for transitional readers who are starting chapter books and still need some help with reading strategies as they progress towards longer books. Titles in the series can be used in guided reading settings or as independent reading. At the end of the The Pop Star Pirates, there are instructional suggestions for instructors/parents including before/during and after activities and suggested discussion questions for the text. Possible discussion topics to use with The Pop Star Pirates could include: pirate life, music appreciation, exercise, responsibility, leadership and the importance of meaningful work.


Toronto’s Myra Junyk is a literacy advocate and author.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.

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