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5.0 2
by Gregory Mone

The exciting adventure of a resourceful boy who discovers his hidden gift as a fortune-hunting pirate

Fish--nicknamed for his incredible swimming abilities--is a twelve-year-old boy from a poor farming family. After taking a job as a courier for his uncle, Fish is waylaid by pirates, who steal the package he's carrying. He soon learns that it's the key to


The exciting adventure of a resourceful boy who discovers his hidden gift as a fortune-hunting pirate

Fish--nicknamed for his incredible swimming abilities--is a twelve-year-old boy from a poor farming family. After taking a job as a courier for his uncle, Fish is waylaid by pirates, who steal the package he's carrying. He soon learns that it's the key to locating the Chain of Chuacar, a legendary treasure. As he works to earn the trust of Cobb, the fortune-hunting captain of the Scurvy Mistress, Fish learns of a mutiny headed by a nasty pirate called Scab. With time running out to find the Chain, Fish and some fellow shipmates still loyal to Cobb must thwart Scab's dastardly plan.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Jody Little
When Maurice is quite young, he attempts to break up a fight between two of his brothers and is hurled into the river. Instinctively, he begins to kick and move his arms, and his brothers are shocked to see him rise to the surface and swim toward him. From that day on, Maurice is known as "Fish." Several years later, Fish is sent away to earn money for his family. He goes to work for his Uncle Gerry as a delivery boy. The day Fish is told to make a delivery to a ship sailing for America is a day that changes his life. Suddenly Fish finds himself aboard a pirate ship, the Scurvy Mistress, where he meets a whole crew of strange characters: Captain Cobb and his wife; the giant pirate, Scab, and Daniel, Nate and Nora, three kids his own age. Soon Fish is swept up in pirate life with deck swabbing, battling and quests for treasure. Fish finds that he is a natural at sea and he is determined to help Captain Cobb locate the treasure, uncover the traitors and maintain order on his ship. The story often feels disjointed and the time gaps are distracting, but there is plenty of humor and plot twists to keep young readers interested. Reviewer: Jody Little
School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—"Fish" Reidy leaves his impoverished family farm in Ireland to be a messenger for his uncle in the city. When someone steals one of his deliveries, he swims after the thief's ship. He finds himself aboard the Scurvy Mistress, along with its determined treasure seeker Captain Cobb, the captain's wife, and a motley crew consisting of One-eyed Willies, British ex-Royal Navy men, and mutinous scalawags. The crew remains loyal to Cobb only as long as their stomachs and coffers stay full, and his idealistic decision to search for the legendary golden chain of Chuacar pushes the greedy first mate to stage an island mutiny. Fish draws on the skills he picked up from the crew members to rescue Cobb and those loyal to the captain. His boisterous and pungent shipboard adventures will sit well alongside favorites like Heather Vogel Frederick's The Voyage of Patience Goodspeed (S & S, 2002) and Avi's The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle (Scholastic, 1990). The sights and smells of life on the high seas, complete with descriptions of bathroom facilities, will give children new insight into this risky career path. Mone seamlessly integrates factual information into his tale of friendship, loyalty, and exploration. As Fish travels from farm to city to ship, he discovers his place in the world, and his moral compass helps to ground and direct the story. His decision not to engage in fighting and his efforts to stop the mutiny will provide points for group discussion. Fish makes a splashing good addition to adventure fiction.—Caitlin Augusta, Stratford Library Association, CT
Kirkus Reviews
Tongue embedded in cheek, Mone proffers a nautical tale well stocked with typecast pirates and starring an Irish farmboy whose aversion to fighting is surpassed only by his abilities in the water. Inducted into the knavish crew of the sloop Scurvy Mistress, young Fish finds himself involved both in piecing together baroque clues to the location of a fabulous golden treasure known as the Chain of Chuaca and in protecting the gentlemanly but naive Captain Cobb from brutal mutineers and rival treasure hunters. Passing up The Buccaneers' Book of Bombs, Guidelines for the Enterprising Pirate and like tomes from the ship's library to learn pirate skills directly from his new shipmates, Fish becomes so proficient at scrubbing the decks and "seats of easement" that he soon earns acceptance despite his refusal to touch a gun or sword. Thanks to quick wit and an uncommon ability to swim he also saves numerous lives, plays a pivotal role in causing the climactic mutiny's failure and winds up a hero-a very, very rich hero. Which, readers will agree, is only just. His pacifism adds an unusual element for stories of this ilk, too. (Adventure. 11-13)

Product Details

Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
8.64(w) x 5.82(h) x 0.93(d)
810L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Gregory Mone has written articles for many magazines, including Popular Science and National Geographic, and has published an adult novel. FISH is his first middle-grade novel. Gregory lives in Boston, Massachusetts.

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Fish 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
TimLogeTeenLibrarian More than 1 year ago
An EXCELLENT pirate novel! Avast me hearties, an EXCELLENT pirate novel sails the seven seas! It’s called FISH by Gregory Mone. You will like the main character, Fish—nicknamed so because he’s a great swimmer. You will like the friends he makes on this adventure: Daniel, Nate, and Nora. You will enjoy learning about what it was like to live on a real pirate ship. This story takes place back in time and there was a lot of worked involved to sail a ship back then. Fish and friends swab the deck, of course, but they also cook meals and darn clothes, and clean nasty things like the ‘seats of easement.’ These were leather toilet splash walls that hung from the bow and stern of the ship. Fish doesn’t choose to become a pirate, it just sort of happens. I won’t ruin it for you and tell you how, but I will tell you treasure is involved. Treasure, code breaking, lots of suspense, and BAD pirates. All the stuff Freebooter’s Fans will love. Don’t miss this one, Mates! Check out the book trailer! Aarrggh….
missmischaenator More than 1 year ago
This is one of the first chapter books my kids have allowed me to read all the way through at bed time. They are 12 and most of the time don't want me to read a chapter book except for Captain Underpants. I picked this up on a whim at the library because it looked interresting. It got to the point shortly into the book that my kids would get mad at me if I didnt read it one night. There is plenty of adventure and action in the story to entertain kids and adults alike and it keeps you wondering what will happen next and how everything will turn out in the end. You feel really invested in the characters and how they react to all the situations they get themselves into and what happens to them. The action starts almost from the very beginning of the book and is non stop until the end of the story. I had to go out and buy a copy for us to have on our bookshelf to read over and over because the library book had to be returned and I also sent a copy to my nieces and nephews so they could enjoy the story as much as we did.