The Resource Magic marks the spot, by Caroline Carlson ; illustrations by Dave Phillips

Magic marks the spot, by Caroline Carlson ; illustrations by Dave Phillips

Label
Magic marks the spot
Title
Magic marks the spot
Statement of responsibility
by Caroline Carlson ; illustrations by Dave Phillips
Creator
Contributor
Illustrator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
"When Hilary Westfield escapes Miss Pim's finishing school to join a misfit pirate crew, she embarks on an unexpectedly magical swashbuckling, plank-walking, searfaring journey" --
Member of
Storyline
Writing style
Award
Amelia Bloomer List, 2014
Review
  • Grades 4-7 Hilary Westfield wants desperately to become a pirate, but her admiral father disapproves and the piracy apprenticeship program accepts only boys. She is sent instead to Miss Pimm’s Finishing School, where classes include etiquette, embroidery, and fainting. Undeterred, she runs away and joins freelance pirate (and “Terror of the Southlands”) Jasper Fletcher and his crew in their quest to locate the lost magic of the Enchantress of the Northlands and turn it over to the people. Carlson’s debut, the first in the Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates series, delivers all the expected swashbuckling tropes—treasure maps, invisible ink, sword fights, and treacherous villains—and then cleverly upends them by adding a talking gargoyle, a governess determined to keep everything shipshape, and a truly terrible dad. Interspersed between chapters are humorous letters, guidebook extracts, and newspaper articles that offer alternative perspectives to the main narrative. Phillips’ pencil artwork includes a frontispiece, a Kingdom of Augusta map, and chapter headings. Give this to fans of Anna Fienberg’s Horrendo’s Curse (2002), another gender-bending pirate yarn. -- Weisman, Kay (Reviewed 10-15-2013) (Booklist, vol 110, number 4)
  • Gr 3 – 6 — Hilary strives to be a pirate, but it's hard when the VNHLP (Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates) declines her application because of her gender. She's also the daughter of the Admiral of the Augusta Royal Navy, who is a sworn enemy of pirates, and she's been sent to a finishing school run by Miss Pimm where she is trapped in fainting, waltzing, and embroidery classes. Luckily, Hilary has her magic gargoyle to assist her in running away to the ship of the Terror of the Southlands, a polite pirate named Jasper Fletcher. Along with Jasper's ward, Charlie; Hilary's governess, Miss Greyson; and a boy she suspects is a spy, Hilary sails off on the Pigeon in search of magic buried by the Enchantress of Augusta. But there is something fishy going on in Augusta with magical items being stolen, Miss Pimm taking her girls to sea, and the admiral in hot pursuit of the Pigeon , unconcerned that his daughter is onboard. Will the magic fall into the wrong hands? Will Hilary and Charlie be able to rescue their friends from the dungeons into which they have been mistakenly tossed? In the end, no one is who they seem. In the magical world of Augusta, pirates grow beautiful flower gardens, letters mysteriously get to ships within hours, and the dungeons contain crocheted rugs. The narrative is interspersed with letters, forms, and quotes from the VNHLP handbook that make for entertaining reading, and the whole package is a silly, rollicking good time.—Clare A. Dombrowski, Amesbury Public Library, MA --Clare A. Dombrowski (Reviewed September 1, 2013) (School Library Journal, vol 59, issue 9, p140)
  • /* Starred Review */ There’s merriment and intrigue on the high seas in this debut novel, which sets the Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates series off to a promising start. Carlson’s characters are as memorable as they are entertaining, beginning with headstrong Hilary Westfield, the daughter of a pompous admiral. Hilary longs to be a pirate but is sent to finishing school, where embroidery, etiquette, and fainting are mainstays of the curriculum; accompanying her is a wisecracking gargoyle carved centuries before by an enchantress. Hilary runs away from school to join the crew of a “freelance” pirate, Jasper Fletcher, which also includes her former governess, an arrogant boy named Oliver, and the gargoyle, who serves as the ship’s figurehead (when Hilary tells him he needn’t serve that function, he replies, “And let some no-good mermaid get the job? I think not!”). A race to uncover long-lost magical treasure pits Hilary against her father, and several unforeseen plot zigzags (along with humorous letters, newspaper clippings, and guidebook excerpts) keep the novel on a delightfully screwy course. Ages 8–12. Author’s agent: Sarah Davies, Greenhouse Literary Agency. Illustrator’s agent: Shannon Associates. (Sept.) --Staff (Reviewed August 12, 2013) (Publishers Weekly, vol 260, issue 32, p)
  • A conked-out attacker lying in a pool of…beet juice is as close as this dainty piratical escapade gets to actual gore or violence. Except for providing application forms and refusing to let young Hilary Westfield be the pirate she's always longed to be, the bureaucratic buccaneers of the series' title remain in the wings in this kickoff tale. She must, perforce, accompanied by her brisk governess and trusty talking stone gargoyle, take matters into her own hands. She slips away from Miss Pimm's Finishing School for Delicate Ladies to join gentlemanly freelance pirate Jasper Fletcher ("Terror of the Southlands," as he's repeatedly dubbed) on a search for a certain fabulous trove of magical gold hidden long ago. Ensuing complications include the horrifying revelation that her own father, a renowned admiral, is scheming to take over the kingdom and banish piracy forever. The tongue-in-cheek tale is punctuated by vigorous but injury-free melees, plus images of tabloid newspaper pages, advertisements, extracts from the titular league's "Treasure Hunting for Beginners" manual and "handwritten" correspondence, including breathless exchanges between Hilary and a school friend. The adventure winds its way to a glittering hoard, a fabulous wedding and, best of all, a well-earned league membership card for its plucky protagonist. Even the gargoyle comes away with a pirate hat. A polite chorus of "Aaarrgghh"s all round, please, for this rather twee outing. (Fantasy. 10-13)(Kirkus Reviews, June 15, 2013)
Assigning source
Provided by publisher
Awards note
A Junior Library Guild selection.
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10220863
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Carlson, Caroline
Illustrations
  • illustrations
  • maps
Index
no index present
Intended audience
  • 900L
  • Ages 8-12
Intended audience source
Lexile
Interest level
MG
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 3
  • 6
Reading level
6.1
http://library.link/vocab/relatedWorkOrContributorName
Phillips, Dave
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Series statement
Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates
Series volume
bk. 1
Study program name
Accelerated Reader
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Pirates
  • Magic
  • Sex role
Target audience
juvenile
Label
Magic marks the spot, by Caroline Carlson ; illustrations by Dave Phillips
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
  • volume
  • sheet
Carrier category code
  • nc
  • nb
Carrier MARC source
  • rdacarrier
  • rdacarrier
Content category
  • text
  • cartographic image
Content type code
  • txt
  • cri
Content type MARC source
  • rdacontent
  • rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm.
Edition
First edition.
Extent
344 pages
Isbn
9780062194343
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations, map
Label
Magic marks the spot, by Caroline Carlson ; illustrations by Dave Phillips
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
  • volume
  • sheet
Carrier category code
  • nc
  • nb
Carrier MARC source
  • rdacarrier
  • rdacarrier
Content category
  • text
  • cartographic image
Content type code
  • txt
  • cri
Content type MARC source
  • rdacontent
  • rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm.
Edition
First edition.
Extent
344 pages
Isbn
9780062194343
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations, map

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