Press Register: Backbeard and the Birthday Suit

Press Register: Backbeard, “the hairiest pirate who ever lived,” must retire his torn and tattered suit. He falls prey to a sales clerk’s idea of what constitutes a fashionable pirate ensemble. Backbeard’s crew, who at first don’t recognize him, assure him that clothes don’t make the pirate, as they take in his new look of a straw boater, boldly printed pink jacket and green-striped pants. A bit garish and ridiculous for the high seas, but Backbeard challenges anyone to say such.

McElligott proves masterful with his lyrical pirate lingo, quite silly and musical. He also takes pirate stereotypes and twists them to the point of ludicrous characterizations, such as a pig that rides on Backbeard’s shoulder instead of a parrot. The young readers at my house guffawed loudly from start to finish. Ages 5-9. –Monica Anderson Young, Mobile Press-Register