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Children's LiteratureLittle boys playing make-believe have pretended to be pirates ever since pirates roamed the Atlantic. They had sword fights and fired cannons while little girls just watched from the sidelines. Things will change after reading this book. The ten women profiled were successful pirates from all over the world. They were not just wives of pirates who backed their men up, but women who led men into battle and dictated what happened with the plunder. One of the cruelest pirates ever was Maria Cobham. She and her husband followed a "no survivors" policy and killed every sailor on every ship they captured. Profit was not the only motive; she and her husband once took over a ship because the mood hit them. Yes, this is a violent book. While the descriptions are not graphic, you cannot get away from the violence of piracy. Despite this, these are fascinating people. They were women who lived in a time when female independence was nonexistent. The book is not visually interesting and poor readers probably will not stick with it unless they have prior interest in the subject. Other readers, especially girls, will enjoy it. 2006, Morgan Reynolds, Ages 12 to 18.