Title: The Pirates! in an Adventure with Scientists
Author: Gideon Defoe
Publication information: Orion Books (2004)
This book is about a pirate crew seeking adventure when they come across Charles Darwin near the Galapagos Islands. The Pirates! in an Adventure with Scientists is an hilarious novel that deals with the weighty issue of science versus religion whilst also featuring lots of roaring, running people through with cutlasses and other piratey things! I picked this one up in the library on a whim because I felt like I recognised the title and after looking it up online found that I'd seen the trailer for the Nick Park film adaptation!
This book is a very lighthearted action-adventure story and is hilarious to read. The author has written in hilarious characters and events, and this humour is also present in the presentation of the book itself; on the flap on the inside of the back cover it says that Gideon Defoe wrote this book about pirates "to impress a girl". This seems similar to what some of the characters in the book might do so I found this quite funny.
The plot did not need much detail and intensity as this is a very lighthearted novel. The pacing was great and easy to read, with just enough action to make it a believable pirate adventure.
The characters were my favourite aspect of this book. I liked how none of the pirates had names, and they were just referred to as aspects of their appearance, such as 'the pirate in green' or 'the pirate with the scarf'. Each one was funny in their own right and added to the overall humourous atmosphere of the plot. Even the antagonist would say something occasionally funny. I also liked that these pirates were unlike their usual stereotype in that they had manners and were slightly more educated than is expected.
The writing, as I have previously said, was paced beautifully so there was never a dull moment and the language itself was quite simple which lent itself well to such a quick read.
Overall I would give The Pirates! in and Adventure with Scientists, 5 out of 5 stars as I found it a very enjoyable read and I will definitely be looking to read the rest of this series by Gideon Defoe.