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Curse of the Blue Tattoo: Being an Account of the Misadventures of Jacky Faber, Midshipman and Fine Lady (Bloody Jack Adventures) Paperback – January 12, 2011

4.6 out of 5 stars 110 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Shiver me timbers! Bloody Jack is back and this time, she’s facing a situation far worse than a ship full of murderous pirates. Curse of the Blue Tattoo, L.A. Meyer’s sequel to the enormously popular Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship’s Boy is just as bawdy and entertaining as the original. Left in Boston by the H.M.S. Dolphin crew when they discover her true sex, Jacky Faber finds herself navigating entirely new waters. It turns out that bloodthirsty buccaneers have nothing on the young ladies at the Lawson Peabody School! As Jacky observes, "…they’re like any bunch of thirty or so cats thrown in a sack and shaken up good. They’re mean in ways that boys never even thought of being." It isn’t long before Jacky shows her true colors by being arrested for "exposing a Female Part" (her knee) while jigging in the streets and is "busted down" to serving girl instead of student. Jacky soldiers on, getting herself into scrapes that her darling beau midshipman Jaimy Fletcher couldn’t even begin to imagine, including uncovering a shady minister’s evil secret and fixing a horse race with voodoo. And where in the world is seafaring Jaimy? As her letters to him continue to go unanswered, Jacky grows more and more worried. Still, at book’s end she takes an assignment as "lady’s companion" to the captain’s wife aboard a whaler headed for London. Astute readers will notice that the whaler’s crabby captain has a peg leg and won’t be surprised if in the next Bloody Jack Adventure, Jacky ends up hunting the great white whale!

Utterly engaging and incredibly well-paced,Curse of the Blue Tattoo is the very best kind of historical fiction: the kind that won’t leave teens snoring. Meyer effortlessly maintains Jacky’s sassy voice and conflicted conscience in what is shaping up to be a great series. While many readers will groan with despair as Jacky sets off yet again at the end of the book, they will also sigh with relief that they will most likely be meeting her again! --Jennifer Hubert --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 8 Up—The audacious Jacky Faber is back in L.A. Meyer's fabulous sequel (2004) to Bloody Jack (2002, both Harcourt). In the first novel, Jacky cut her hair, put on boy's clothes, changed her name to Jack, and signed on as a ship's boy aboard a Royal Navy frigate. Jacky thrived at sea and attained the rank of a midshipman. When the Navy discovered she was a girl, they dumped her, albeit with great pomp and ceremony, in Boston. This sequel begins as Jacky leaves behind her beloved Jaimy, disembarks in Boston—in a dress—to attend The Lawson Peabody School for Fine Young Girls. Jacky soon discovers that fighting pirates was a piece of cake compared to circumnavigating the complexities of becoming a lady. She fails at embroidery, but excels at sneaking out of school and playing her pennywhistle in taverns. Jacky falls short in French, but ably learns to ride astride a glorious stallion and compete in a horse race. Her table manners are deplorable, but her sleuthing abilities are top notch when she uncovers the murder of a former classmate. Finally giving up, Jacky abandons her school, in flames (don't ask), and jumps aboard a whaling ship to make her way back to Jaimy. Katherine Kellgren delivers a stunning performance with a myriad of amazing voices. Her cockney Jacky is just right and makes the story more accessible to listeners who may struggle with the Brit-speak. Loyal, clever, sassy, impudent, and just a little bit naughty, Jacky is a protagonist to admire. Simply delightful.—Tricia Melgaard, Centennial Middle School, Broken Arrow, OK
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Series: Bloody Jack Adventures (Book 2)
  • Paperback: 495 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; 2 edition (January 12, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152054596
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152054595
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (110 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #194,797 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Curse of the Blue Tattoo continues the adventures of Jacky Faber after she is sent from the HMS Dolphin after her true gender is disclosed. Jacky is forced to leave her love, Jaimy for a boarding school in Boston, where she is taken to become a "lady".

Jacky soon, on one of her secret trips out of school, shows her knee while dancing for a group of sailors. She is arrested and sent back to her school in disgrace. Miss Pimm, the headmistress demotes Jacky to a serving girl.

Jacky's exploits continue, including many trips to her friend Amy's farm, a murderous Reverend, and entertaining at an inn. Her numerous adventures kept me reading late at night, and although I cannot promise that it will interest you, I would highly recommend this book (after reading its prequel, Bloody Jack).
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A Kid's Review on July 8, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Let me tell you something: Creating a sequel to such a great book like "Bloody Jack", is a hard task. But, Mr. Meyer has done it, and he has done it very well. Although the second book does not have as much action as the first, it has just as good of a plot, story and theme. When i found out Mr. Meyer was to make a sequel, i asked myself, "How can he write a sequel and not have the same story line? Obviously she cannot hide the fact that she is a girl any longer, which means she cannot sail the seas. How will Mr. Meyer accomplish the task of writing a second chapter in the Bloody Jack tales? And if he does, will he be succesful?"
The Answer is, yes, this story is equally good, no, equally GREAT as the first one. Nice work Mr. Meyer.
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Format: Hardcover
This is one of the best books for young adults (and up!) to come around for a long time. Though the plot is, at times, not exceptionally unique, Jacky's plucky narrative voice smooths all ruffles. At the end of "Bloody Jack," the prequel to "Curse," autor L.A. Meyer left our heroine standing on a dock in Boston, waiting to be taken to finishing school. This book picks up precisely where the last left off, and as we might expect, Jacky does not even begin to fit in with the priveleged, proper girls at Mistress Pimm's School for Fine Young Ladies. Woven into the story line is a disguised suicide that turns out to be an unsolved murder, a strained young love, and of course, heaping helpings of Jacky's charming wit and innocent naivete that we loved from the first book. (This one's even better.) The ending is a big surprise, even though in hindsight we realize we should've been expecting it - and until that point, you won't be able to put it down. Well worth the read!
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Format: Paperback
As a mother who screens everything her 12-year-old daughter reads, I am always excited to come across a book or start to a new series where I don't have to pre-set my mind to how a 12-year-old would enjoy it and appreciate it on that level. Good writers write for the child - but I would think great writers write for both the adult and the child. L.A. Meyer's "Bloody Jack" series is an excellent example of great writing based on that criterion alone. More exciting and cheeky than the "Cat Royal" series (by the very excellent Julia Golding) and set at a faster pace than Robert Louis Stevenson's "Treasure Island", it's funny, Dickensian in parts and can be enjoyed by ... Well, okay, I'd say PG-13, except I know said daughter's level of maturity! We also love the links to the songs provided on the web site. I know I'm biased, but it really takes a British writer (C.S. Forester, Charles Gidley, and, now, L.A. Meyer) to write about sailing adventures across the Seven Seas! Below is said daughter's review of the second book in the series - so, so glad the series is available on Kindle!

"The book, `Jacky Faber and the Curse of the Blue Tattoo' by L.A. Meyer was much better than `Bloody Jack', the first book in the series.

"Jacky has survived London gangs, sickness, being a ship boy in disguise, being captured by pirates, being hanged and more. She has killed two men, fallen in love and watched friends die. But can Bloody Jack survive learning how to be a fine lady? Top it off with learning how to embroider, ride a horse, solve a mystery of a murdered girl, getting into jail, winning a horse race, becoming an actress and you have yet another adventure Jacky Faber never intended to have.

"My favorite part was when Jacky smacked Amy's new horse for biting her.
Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
I just finished Curse of the Blue Tattoo- I couldn't put it down. Meyer's second book in the Bloody Jack series might even be better than the first (and I loved the first one). The story moves quickly, I could not predict what would happen next. I don't to give anything away (I hate reviews that give away major plot points)- suffice to say that there were parts of the book that made my heart pound (and that doesn't happen very often). I am 28 years old and do not delve into the young adult category for reading very often. Curse of the Blue Tattoo is a great read for anyone, regardless of age- When's the movie coming out??
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this second adventure of Bloody Jacky Faber... or should I call her "Tacky?" I ask, because whoever was in charge of digitalizing this work for Harcourt Books apparently scanned the original with Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software, but didn't proofread too well. Jacky refes to herself as "Tacky" about a dozen times, words like "I'll" become "III" and "thinking" becomes "thmking," etc. Ch. 46 was especially bad. That said, the mistakes happen several times per chapter, not per page, so they may not bother other readers as much as they bothered me.

As for the story itself--great yarn! Jacky does tend to get herself into the worst trouble, and since she's no longer a starving urchin, she comes off as a tad less sympathetic in the doing so. I sided a lot more with her friend Amy tha with her. But Jacky's good heart, free spirit, and love of animals go a long way toward redeeming her foolishness. Jacky's recollections of her life as a pickpocket felt a little like retroactive continuity, since in Book 1 the only real reference to that was "we steals a bit," and the Dramatic Theft of a Loaf of Bread. But despite all that? This is easily a 4-star book. The historic details were a delight--especially the relationship b/t a certain preacher and Cotton Mather, and the continual reference to the important "Adams" family of the area! It was a pleasure to read. I'm definitely off to download Book #3.
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