Small Saul by Ashley Spires
The author of Binky the Space Cat returns with a brand new character for us to enjoy! Small Saul is not your regular pirate type, but he has known since he was small that he wanted to spend his life at sea. When the Navy turned him down because he was too short, Saul enrolled in Pirate College. Even in college, he didn’t fit in. He was great at singing shanties and less good at sword fighting. He wasn’t rough or tough, but he excelled at swabbing the deck. Finally, he had his pirate diploma and headed for the docks. But his time at sea was not what Small Saul expected and definitely not what the pirates on The Rusty Squid were ready for!
Spires infuses the entire story with puns, pirate humor and just plain fun. Her writing is meant to be read aloud with its natural pacing. The broad comedy also makes this book ideal for sharing with a group. The illustrations continue the humor of the text with Saul’s wide-eyed glasses, his diminutive size, and the rather blank faces of the pirates.
Nicely, the book is not just humorous, it also has a strong message at its heart. It celebrates differences between people that can first be seen as problems and then are seen as treasures. It’s a message worthy of pirate gold.
This is one pirate book that will not be walking the plank any time soon. It’s ideal for any pirate-themed story time and will appeal to even elementary-aged children thanks to its humor. Appropriate for ages 4-6.
Reviewed from copy received from Kids Can Press.