Saracen Hobday lives on a lonely island with his granny, who was once a detective inspector. When Granny hears that her erstwhile pirate captive has escaped, she sets off to recapture him. However, Saracen discovers that he is able to capture Grudge-Gallows all by himself.
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Grade 3-6-Saracen Hobday, a painfully shy and reclusive boy, lives with his grandmother on lonely Breakfast Island. He spends his days gardening and listening to the bossy woman tell about the great days when she was a detective inspector. When Granny is called back into service to catch the evil pirate Grudge-Gallows, Saracen stays on and fends for himself. Then one day, she sends him a rare tingleberry plant that changes his life. He discovers that to care for it properly, he must make contact with the world. From the moment he picks up the phone, Saracen finds excitement, fortune, and love in a series of madcap events that lead to his soaring self-esteem and the villain's capture. In this 20th-century pirate yarn, Mahy pokes gentle fun at the trappings and treasures of the modern world. Her nonstop, zany plot is filled with lively language punctuated by metaphors, puns, wordplay, and poetry. Staermose's pen-and-ink drawings match Mahy's tone and extend the humor and action of the text. While the piratical cover and undemanding format will attract beginning chapter-book readers, the story's language, pacing, and humor will also make it a terrific read-aloud.?Maggie McEwen, Coffin Elementary School, Brunswick, ME
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
As zippy-and often as alliterative-as its title, Mahy's most recent rowdy romp takes place on Breakfast Island, where painfully shy (but, he proves, ultimately brave) Saracen Hobday lives with his spry granny, a retired "detective inspector." When she learns that the pirate Grudge-Gallows has escaped from prison, she hies herself to Antarctica to round up her age-old nemesis, leaving Saracen to fend for himself. After Granny sends him a "peculiar plant in a plastic bag," the boy soon discovers the magic of the tingleberry, which thrives when its roots are buried in ice cream-and which manages to bring true love into Saracen's life. This thread of the plot will hold less appeal to many kids than the theatrical arrival of Grudge-Gallows (he has "the voice of someone who had been eating gritty gravel mixed with gravy") and his clamorous crew, who attempt to steal Saracen's diamond-studded, solid-gold telephone. But it all adds up to fun, at times frivolous farce. Ages 8-12.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Puffin Books, 1997. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # 9780140377224
Book Description Puffin Books, 1997. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0140377220