Big thanks to Disney Hyperion for supply a galley of Hook’s Revenge for an honest review.
If you’ve ever wondered about Captain’s Hook’s possible offspring, then here’s your chance to dive into Heidi Schulz’s version of the story with the spunky, fearless Jocelyn, daughter of the infamous Hook.
You see Jocelyn was born with a spirit of adventure in her bones but finds herself learning how to be prim and proper in a boarding school. She dreams of life on the ocean, and learning about the father she’s never met. Imagine The Little Princess with a little Disney magic thrown in.
A major highlight for me was Jocelyn’s budding friendship with Roger. She’s never really had a friend on her side, and when the two meet and dream of faraway places together, it was pretty adorable. But like most stories, a wrench is thrown into their plans and the two friends are forced to learn a lot before their joint daydreams can be realized.
Jocelyn must also deal with her father’s reputation and figuring out what kind of person she wants to be. Not so easy when you are a kid and there’s a lot of pressure from those around you to act a certain way, but, from page one, you know that Jocelyn will find her way even if she gets herself into a few messes first. (She really, really loved to be messy.)
With some quirky and fun illustrations from John Hendrix, Hook’s Revenge is the kind of read to pick up before bedtime for the kid at heart and the kid in your life. For the big kids there are plenty of grown up jokes (the narrator is pretty excellent) to keep you chuckling and for the kids, it was great to have such a strong young lady at the helm of this quest. To me, this is the best way to present a middle grade book because you want it to be an experience for everyone reading.
What can I say? I was hooked. (Har, har. Stay tuned for book 2, The Pirate’s Code, out in 2015.)
What others are saying about Hook’s Revenge:
- “…it wasn’t a re-telling of Peter Pan. It was a full blown, “this is what happens after the fact”, dealing with the family of one the notorious literary villains of all time. It was wonderful. Quirky, funny, quick, witty, and more.” – Jeff, MiceChat & Communicore Weekly
- “This is middle grade fiction at its best. Clever, riotous, fast-paced and bewitching with an imaginative premise, a cast of sincere, lovable characters and a message both profound and deeply felt, Hook’s Revenge is a book I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend to even the most reluctant of middle grade readers.” – Jen, Pop! Goes the Reader