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Comment: The item shows wear from consistent use, but it remains in good condition and works perfectly. All pages and cover are intact (including the dust cover, if applicable). Spine may show signs of wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting. May include "From the library of" labels.
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Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship's Boy (Bloody Jack Adventures) Paperback – June 10, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. The tale of Mary, an 18th-century London street urchin who dresses as a boy, renames herself Jacky and goes to sea as a ship's boy, soars to new heights in the audio format. Mary's distinctive Cockney dialect is tailor-made for reading aloud. And with award-winning narrator Kellgren at the helm, the result is pure magic. She creates authentic character voices, switching effortlessly among Mary's Cockney, the melodic Irish lilt of sailor Liam, the educated American voice of schoolmaster Tilden, the chillingly sinister, leering tone of Jacob Sloat and many other voices without missing a beat. Her acting is also first-rate: her tone of pride as Mary boasts of her achievements, her tenderness as she speaks of Jaimy, the boy she secretly falls in love with, and the sheer terror in her voice during scenes of violence and danger will have listeners on the edge of their seats. For tweens and teens caught up in this summer's Pirate Fever, Bloody Jackis the perfect audiobook to make those long family car trips fly by. Ages 12-up. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From School Library Journal

Grade 6-8-With the plague running rampant in London in 1797, Mary's parents and sister are soon counted among the dead. Left alone and penniless, the eight-year-old is taken in by a gang of orphans and learns survival skills. However, when their leader is killed, Mary decides to try her luck elsewhere. She strips the dead body, cuts her hair, renames herself Jack Faber, and is soon employed as a ship's boy on the HMS Dolphin. When the vessel sees its first skirmish with a pirate ship, her bravery saves her friend Jaimy and earns her the nickname "Bloody Jack." Told by Mary/Jack in an uneven dialect that sometimes doesn't ring true, the story weaves details of life aboard the Dolphin. Readers see how she changes her disguise based on her own physical changes and handles the "call of nature," her first experiences with maturation, and the dangers to boys from unscrupulous crew members. The protagonist's vocabulary, her appearance and demeanor, and her desire to be one of the boys and do everything they do without complaint complete the deception. This story also shows a welcome slant to this genre with an honorable, albeit strict Captain, and ship's mates who are willing and able teachers. If readers are looking for a rousing, swashbuckling tale of pirates and adventures on the high seas, this title falls short. However, it is a good story of a brave ship's "boy" with natural leadership abilities and a sense of fair play and humanity.
Kit Vaughan, Chesterfield County Public Schools, VA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Series: Bloody Jack Adventures (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; Second Edition edition (June 10, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 015205085X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152050856
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (232 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #178,009 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

L. A. MEYER is the author of Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship's Boy. He also has been a designer and an art teacher, and is currently the curator and exhibitor at the Clair de Loon Gallery near his home in Corea, Maine.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

62 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Tom Knapp VINE VOICE on November 24, 2005
Format: Hardcover
The Jacky of the title was born Mary Faber, whose life turned upside down when a pestilence in 1797 left her orphaned and homeless. She turned to the streets, surviving for a few years by begging, brawling and occasionally stealing on the dirty streets of London. But she lost her taste for that life when her best mate was "done for" by a vile city graverobber, and with few options remaining she hacked away her hair, changed her name, lied about her age and secured a post as a ship's boy on HMS Dolphin.

It's not an adventure-a-minute kind of book, nor will you see Jacky single-handedly besting entire pirate crews with her little knife. The book has a stronger sense of reality to it than that; Jacky has adventures, yes, but author L.A. Meyer never makes the mistake of making her superhuman. She makes mistakes, she runs afoul of bad circumstances, she feels fear. The dangers that threaten are very real, and the tone of the book sometimes is very dark. But through it all, she remains a plucky, cheerful girl, bouncing quickly back from misfortune, who loves to eat, dance and feel the wind in her face.

Bloody Jack is a a rollicking good time, a colorful yarn with a lively protagonist and a boatload of action. Once begun, the book is difficult to put down; once completed, it's hard not to leap immediately into the next in the series.
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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Ruth Nelson on February 2, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Bloody Jack is, without any doubt, the best kid's book I've read since the last Harry Potter. In fact, it holds its own with Harry. It is told by its heroine - a 12 year old girl named Mary Faber who was abandonned on the streets of early 19th century London when her parents died of fever. She tells how she was taken in by a street gang where she gets tough and street wise for five years. At the start of the book, the gang leader is killed. She figures her chances are better as a boy so she cuts off her hair, changes her name to Jacky, and makes her way to the docks where she talks her way on board a British Navy vessel because she can read.
She is one of six cabin boys - mostly street kids who are thrilled to have a chance to eat regularly. They can't believe their luck to be paid as well. During their three year voyage - a mission to chase down pirates, they learn to climb rigging, work as powder monkeys in sea battles with pirates, do all kinds of work on deck and hope to improve their lot by becoming able-bodied seamen and regular members of the crew.
At the same, Jacky has to figure out how to keep her secret while her breasts are developing and she starts her period. She also develops a serious crush on the oldest of the cabin boys - a quiet lad who is the younger son of a real family.
In the process she has all kinds of adventures. The crew battles pirates. (She gets her nickname from shooting a pirate during a battle.) The boys have to learn to handle the discipline of the British Navy where they are junior to everyone including the 14 year old midshipmen - one of whom is a complete bully. They get shore leave in exotic ports like Jamaica. Their conversations about religion and education as they puzzle out the ways of the world are hilariously funny.
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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Kathryn L. Iacampo on January 24, 2008
Format: Audio CD
This Audio CD is utterly fantastic!! I cannot rave about it enough. It is so good, that I am sitting here typing a recommendation, something I have never done for all the thousands of books I have purchased here.

I had already read the novel, and two sequels. I love the books, and I love the character of Jacky Faber. Then, I got this audio book for Christmas as I had just gotten a job which required a 45 minute commute each way, so I thought this would help kill the time. Well, I love this story even more now, having heard Katherine Kellgren's wonderful reading. I swear, you'll think it is Jacky herself telling her story. This actress, and that's what she deserves to be called, really made this story come alive. If there are Oscar's for audio book narrator's, I hope she wins one! Do I sound like I'm gushing? Well, I am! Not only is this a wonderfully fun story for any age, but hearing it read by this incredibly talented woman truly takes it to the next level.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By H. S. Wedekind VINE VOICE on October 10, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I'm not normally a reader of sea stories, though I have read a few. All that technical ship information about mizzens, and fo'c's'les, and spankers, and such caused my eyes to blur and my head to hurt; however, not so in this wonderful novel. I can easily follow her duties around the HMS Dolphin and her simple explanations about the ship's rigging. Jacky is a dear girl and her daily observations about life on land and aboard the HMS Dolphin and her "Deception" are informative, entertaining, and humorous. She's a gutsy young woman who somehow survives the many scrapes and dangerous situations she manages to get herself into. While Jacky is tough on the outside, she is still all girl on the inside, which makes her also tender when she needs to be. She's loyal to her mates and cheerful no matter what. We share in her love of life and cheer her on. We also feel her when, after having fallen deeply in love with Jaime, she is separated from him at the end. I'm sure this part brought a tear to many a reader's eye. I'm currently reading book two: CURSE OF THE BLUE TATTOO. It's even more packed with misadventures than the first book. Keep writng Mr. Meyer! I can't get enough of Jacky Faber.
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