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Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship's Boyby L. A. Meyer
Synopses & ReviewsPlease note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.
Life as a ship's boy aboard HMS Dolphin is a dream come true for Jacky Faber. Gone are the days of scavenging for food and fighting for survival on the streets of 18th-century London. Instead, Jacky is becoming a skilled and respected sailor as the crew pursues pirates on the high seas.
There's only one problem: Jacky is a girl. And she will have to use every bit of her spirit, wit, and courage to keep the crew from discovering her secret. This could be the adventure of her life — if only she doesn't get caught...
"'I prays for deliverance,' confides Mary Faber, orphaned at eight years old by a pestilence that relegates her to a life of begging and petty crime on the streets of London. After her gang's leader is killed, she dons his clothing, trading in the name Mary for Jack, and takes to the high seas aboard the HMS Dolphin. Meyer evokes life in the 18th-century Royal Navy with Dickensian flair. He seamlessly weaves into Jacky's first-person account a wealth of historical and nautical detail at a time when pirates terrorized the oceans. Interspersed are humorous asides about her ongoing struggle to maintain 'The Deception' (she fashions herself a codpiece and emulates the 'shake-and-wiggle action' of the other boys when pretending to use the head, for instance), she earns her titular nickname in a clash with pirates and survives a brief stretch as a castaway before her true identity is discovered (the book ends as she's about to be shipped off to a school for young ladies in Boston). The narrative's dialect occasionally falters, but this detracts only slightly from the descriptive prose ('He's got muscles like a horse and looks to have a brain to match') and not at all from the engine driving this sprawling yarn: the spirited heroine's wholly engaging voice. Her budding sexuality (which leads to a somewhat flawed plotline involving a secret shipboard romance) and a near-rape by a seaman mark this one for older readers, who will find the salty tale a rattling good read. Ages 12-up. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"This is a properly thrilling adventure with pirates, shipwrecks, and even a little romance, able to pull in both boys and girls." Children's Literature
"A good story of a brave ship's 'boy' with natural leadership abilities and a sense of fair play and humanity." School Library Journal
"Capped by a fitting but bittersweet ending, the first-person narrative shines, and a wealth of historical research is seamlessly knitted into the material. A first-rate read." Kirkus
While disguised as a boy, Jacky Faber experiences adventure and romance on the high seas.
The acclaimed historical fiction series Bloody Jack Adventures continues with this rollicking pirate adventure on the high seas as Jacky Faber finds herself aboard a convict ship headed for the penal colony of New South Wales, Australia.
Jacky Faber, rich from her exploits diving for Spanish gold, has purchased the Lorelei
Lee to carry passengers across the Atlantic. Believing she has been absolved of past sins
against the Crown, Jacky docks in London to take on her crew, but is instead arrested
and sentenced to life in the newly formed penal colony in Australia. To add insult to
injury, the Lorelei Lee is confiscated to carry female convicts to populate New South
Wales. Not one to give in to self-pity, Jacky rallies her sisters to “better” their position—
resulting in wild escapades, brushes with danger, and much hilarity.
On the very day that Jacky Faber is to wed her true love, she is kidnapped by British Naval Intelligence and forced to embark on yet another daring mission—this time to search for sunken Spanish gold. But when Jacky is involved, things don't always go as planned.
Jacky has survived battles on the high seas, the stifling propriety of a Boston finishing school, and even confinement in a dank French prison. But no adventure has quite matched her opportunistic street-urchin desires—until now.
About the Author
L. A. Meyer received a master of fine arts degree from Boston University, and is currently the curator and exhibitor at the Clair de Loon Gallery in Bar Harbor, Maine. He lives in Corea, Maine.
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