Monday, April 13, 2009

Jack Sparrow almost rescues book

If The Dark Frigate, the 1924 winner of the Newbery Award, would have had Johnny Depp in it, I’m sure I would have enjoyed it much more. However, sans Jack Sparrow, I was left metaphorically up a creek without a paddle while reading this book. I tried to put the events and characters into the Pirates of the Caribbean model just to stay awake. The Dark Frigate has all the elements of a good pirate story: an orphaned boy searching for his place in the world, a band of ruthless pirates who impress his ship, and several storms. However, even Jerry Bruckheimer couldn’t salvage this story. The dialogue was archaic and hard to follow, leaving the reader confused about the plot and the sequence of events. The characters were flat and boring, even the villains. And the villains are the sorest band of lollygaggers I have seen, who constantly plan to do damage to the good townspeople but always manage to bungle it. I wish I could have developed some resentment for the darn pirates who ruin our poor Phillip’s easy voyage, but honestly, they are so incompetent, it is comical. I did enjoy the descriptions of the fantastic vistas that Phillip encounters, but as a whole like the second installment of the Pirates trilogy, I read this book to get through it and moved on to the next one.

The Dark Frigate by Charles Boardman
Confusing plot, language, characters
Beautiful description of scenery and locations

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