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Rees, Celia.
New York : Bloomsbury, 2003.
ISBN 1582348162

(3 booktalks)

Booktalk #1

Nancy Kington has grown up in a wealthy family in eighteenth century England.  Her father is a successful businessman.  Nancy is secretly betrothed to young William who has set off to sea to earn his fortune.  But when her father dies, Nancy is sent to Jamaica to the family sugar plantation.  Here she becomes friends with Minerva, a slave.  When she learns that her brother plans to marry her off a cruel, ex-buccaneer, Nancy decides she needs to take control of her own life.  After rescuing Minerva from the vicious slave overseer, the two young women find themselves dressed in men's clothing and set out to sea.  Through a series of events, they find themselves aboard a pirate ship.  And now that is how they spend their days -- as pirates.   She knows that her beloved William will never be able to accept her for what she is now.  Based on the true story of women pirates, this novel gives you an insight to what life may have been like in the eighteenth century for the sea-faring men -- and women.

Booktalk #2

Did you see the movie Pirates of the Caribbean with Johnny Depp?  If you did, and you like romance, daring battles, and high seas adventure, you will really like reading Pirates! by Celia Rees!  Meet Nancy Kington, a sixteen-year-old, and discover her fatherís promise to the wicked Bartholome.  Is this why Nancy and Minerva Sharpe, a Jamaican plantation slave, forged a friendship that led them to run away and become pirates?   Dive into the pages of this book to find out!  (Sandy Bailey,  South Carolina Book Awards, 2006)

Booktalk #3

"Acrid smoke drifted thick in the air, and the sound of the shot in the small room still rang in my ears as I looked at Minerva, unable to believe what I had just done.  'I didn't mean...' I started to say, as we stared at each other over the ruin of Duke's body.  'I never could do such a thing...'  But I did mean it.  And I'd just done it.  Killed a man." (Rees, 147)

Sixteen-year-old Nancy is your typical girl, but she's going through some tough times.  When her father dies, she's left with her older brother to 'take care of her' and they don't exactly get along.  I guess there's really no surprise there - I can't imagine having to put up with my brother telling me what to do all the time.  On top of that, she has to move away from everything she's ever known when her brother takes over the family business in Jamaica.

Jamaica seems like paradise. The food's not so bad and the swimming is great.  Nancy even makes a friend.  Then her idyllic life is thrown off course once again.

She does it.  Pulls the trigger to save her best friend.  Suddenly, she's wanted for murder and her brother's creepy friend is stalking her.

Her family won't defend her.  She has no money.  Where will she run to?  What will she do?

She'll become a pirate.

It's the 1700s.  Nancy's a woman.  She's someone who isn't allowed to disobey men.

So she'll kill them.  Maybe she's not your typical girl after all.

Pirates! by Celia Rees.  (Meaghan Bowman,, librarian)

SUBJECTS:     Pirates -- Fiction.
                        Blacks -- Jamaica -- Fiction.
                        Slavery -- Fiction.
                        Jamaica -- History -- 18th century -- Fiction.
                        Adventure and adventurers -- Fiction.
                        Sea stories.
                        Historical fiction.


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