Pirates of Pensacola

Pirates of Pensacola

3.0 2
by Keith Thomson
     
 

The Cooke and Hood families have been at each other's throats since the Spanish Main days. The latest chapter in their piratic rivalry takes place in 2004, when an old treasure map turns up. None of this seems to matter to Morgan Cooke, a cowardly, landlubbing accountant entirely ignorant of his heritage until his estranged father, Isaac, in need of crewmen,

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Overview

The Cooke and Hood families have been at each other's throats since the Spanish Main days. The latest chapter in their piratic rivalry takes place in 2004, when an old treasure map turns up. None of this seems to matter to Morgan Cooke, a cowardly, landlubbing accountant entirely ignorant of his heritage until his estranged father, Isaac, in need of crewmen, kidnaps him and thrusts him into the fray. When Morgan wakes up on a boat in the middle of the Caribbean, he learns that piracy still flourishes, albeit with far more discretion than in the old days--pirates disguise their fast boats as shrimpers or tugs--but with no less bloodshed. Judging even a shot at riches vastly preferable to a return to his lonely, fluorescent-lit work station existence, Morgan pierces his ear, dons the eye patch and peg leg, and set sail for glorious adventure.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publishers Weekly
A pirate arrives by motorboat to crash a high society costume ball in 1976 Florida and winds up abandoning his only son, Morgan, for a prison sentence in screenwriter Thomson's beguiling, energetic debut. Flash forward to 2004 Miami, where Vail & Co. accountant Morgan feels scarred from a cheerless childhood with an insensitive foster family. But then Isaac, newly freed from prison, resurfaces to regale Morgan with the story of $42.7 million worth of gold ingots he'd smuggled decades earlier from the rival Hood family of the Caribbean's Sugar Islands. And by the way, Isaac tells the baffled Morgan, your real last name is Cooke, "as in the great Pirates Cooke." "Borrowing" Morgan's company's yacht, enthusiastic father drugs reluctant son and sets off with treasure map in hand. They must fend off Vail & Co. crooks and a succession of deadly pirates led by the revenge-hungry Lafitte brothers. The father-son epic quest finds them jail-breaking, boat-stealing, cannonball-dodging and male-bonding on their way to Booty Island's treasure (with assistance from plucky maiden Polly and an alcoholic talking parrot, Captain Roy). Crowned with buccaneer vernacular, plenty of colorful extras and a feel-good ending, it's a vivid adventure tale befitting the high seas of Hollywood. Agent, Richard Abate. (Apr.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Adult/High School-Thomson mixes a hodgepodge of odd characters, varieties of pirate-speak, and a short history of buccaneers in the area of the Caribbean into an oddball story replete with humor, love, and lots of adventure. Morgan Cooke couldn't be more surprised when he finds his father, Isaac, lurking outside his house. Their hurried reunion is punctuated by Isaac quickly reciting a short history of his years of incarceration, and then moves rapidly into a discussion of his hidden pirate treasure. This being the 21st century, Morgan is more than skeptical. After hijacking both his son and the boat that belongs to Morgan's employer, Isaac introduces him to pirating in current times. At first, Morgan is aghast at the prospect, but he begins to warm to the cause, especially after Isaac's treasure proves to be real. As it turns out, the Cookes' arch rival is the boss of Vail & Co., which also makes him Morgan's boss-and one of a long family line of pirates who have feuded with the Cooke family for generations. There's lots of swashbuckling action; a romance; and a scene-stealing, rum-seeking parrot as father and son find the treasure and then lose it to various nefarious villains. A scene with a shark attack adds to the excitement. Fun, entertaining, and light, the story produces lots of smiles and more than a few laughs.-Pam Johnson, Fairfax County Public Library, VA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Pirates sail again in Thomson's rollicking debut, a tall, fanciful tale that throws us headlong into a world of peg-legged sea dogs and hidden treasure, just minutes from your nearest Sandals resort. That's where buttoned-down, 36-year-old accountant Morgan Baker finds himself when long-lost dad Isaac, recently sprung from prison, steals the Vail & Company yacht, intent on retrieving the $40-million worth of gold ingots he stashed on a remote Caribbean island 28 years earlier. Morgan soon learns that he and his delinquent dad are direct descendants of the notorious Cookes, legendary pirates of yore. Unfortunately, Morgan also discovers that his employers, smarmy and suave CEO Avery Vail and his foulmouthed dowager mother Isabel, are direct descendants of their archrivals, the Hoods, who still hold to the pirate credo, "Dead men tell no tales." Morgan quickly discards Plan A (reforming wayward dad) in favor of Plan B (joining him). The chase for the buried treasure is on, set against a backdrop of remote Caribbean islands seemingly untouched by time-or soap-and populated by the crew of the Jolly Roger. Screenwriter and Web site cartoon animator Thomson doesn't waste much effort on gritty details or character nuance. Instead, he sends readers into a maelstrom alongside Morgan and Isaac from one pitched battle to the next. The pirates fight in bars, brawl in brothels, escape (improbably) from Old World dungeons and booby-trapped caves, and set off sufficient fireworks to fuel several Jerry Bruckheimer movies. Granted, believability walks the plank in the process. But who's expecting realism in a story that features an alcoholic parrot, a curvy, tattooed manicurist equally handy with nailfile and pirate's cutlass, and a boatload of eye-patched, grog-swilling characters with names like Squid, Hatch and Fife?A dizzying plot served up with tankards of disarming deadpan humor, a smattering of actual pirate history and characters just engaging enough to have us swallow it all.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780312334994
Publisher:
St. Martin's Press
Publication date:
04/01/2005
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.62(h) x 1.11(d)

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