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Pirates! [Kindle Edition]

Celia Rees
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Nancy Kington, daughter of a rich merchant, suddenly orphaned when her father dies, is sent to live on her family's plantation in Jamaica. Disgusted by the treatment of the slaves and her brother's willingness to marry her off, she and one of the slaves, Minerva, run away and join a band of pirates. For both girls the pirate life is their only chance for freedom in a society where both are treated like property, rather than individuals. Together they go in search of adventure, love, and a new life that breaks all restrictions of gender, race, and position. Told through Nancy's writings, their adventures will appeal to readers across the spectrum and around the world.

Editorial Reviews Review

Nancy Kington, a wealthy merchant’s daughter living in Bristol, England in the early 1700’s, is sometimes lonely but enjoys the privileges her father’s business brings. Minerva Sharpe is a penniless slave’s daughter living and working on the Kington’s Jamaican plantation. These two young women, united through a set of extraordinary circumstances including a brutal murder, an arranged marriage, and set of ruby earrings, find themselves sailing the high seas in search of love, adventure and freedom—as pirates!

Celebrated British author Celia Rees (Witch Child, Sorceress) has penned a treasure chest of a tale that will keep teens glued to the pages until the last villain sinks to a deserved watery grave and the last beautiful heroine is reunited with her lost love. Frustrated land-lubbers will want to follow up this four-star read with L.A. Meyer’s Bloody Jack: Being an Account of the Curious Adventures of Mary "Jacky" Faber, Ship’s Boy or Sara Lorimer‘s Booty, a collection of all-true tales of swashbuckling women.--Jennifer Hubert

From School Library Journal

Grade 6-9-This swashbuckling adventure features all of the elements of a grand pirate tale: sword fights, duels, charming rogues, true love, murder, and the odd severed head. Narrator Nancy Kington joins a pirate crew to escape an arranged marriage to a deliciously evil Brazilian, a former pirate himself. She takes along Minerva, a slave who not too surprisingly turns out to be her half sister. The pirates, in one of many happy coincidences, are captained by Mr. Broom, who had already befriended Nancy on an earlier voyage. Quickly adapting to the life, the two young women survive storms, capture, mutiny, and more. This crew manages to steal with little or no bloodshed, except when the victims are clearly villainous themselves. Nancy comes to relish the excitement of sea life, but still hopes to reunite with the young man she loves, who serves with the British Navy. The narration is well paced and engrossing, giving readers a strong feel for the times without bogging down in details. Nancy describes the practice of slavery and the rights of women perceptively, but fairly convincingly for a 1725 character of her background and experience. The first 100 pages are less exciting than the rest of the book, but they set the stage nicely for the involving exploits that follow. The inevitable showdown with the Brazilian provides a satisfying page-turner of a climax. While a few of the supporting characters seem a bit wooden, and some plot twists stretch credulity, this is a rip-roaring adventure with an engaging female heroine.
Steven Engelfried, Beaverton City Library, OR
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 525 KB
  • Print Length: 379 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens; Reprint edition (December 1, 2008)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002TTIC9Q
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #336,356 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Richie's Picks: PIRATES! November 30, 2003
"I was of a roving frame of mind, even as a child, and for years my fancy had been to set sail on one of my father's ships. One grey summer morning, in 1722, my wish was granted, but not quite in the way that I would have wanted."
Celia Rees's PIRATES! is a spicy blend of adventure, history, greed, loyalty, danger, sisterhood, (and pants), involving two young women--one who has been born into wealth in Britain, the other into slavery in Jamaica--in the early 1700s.
Nancy Kington, the wealthy merchant's daughter whose mother died giving birth to her, narrates the story. It begins with the sordid events through which her brother's gambling costs the family its fortune and how, shortly thereafter on his death bed, Nancy's father schemes with her brothers to restore their wealth. Unbeknownst to her at the time, Nancy is made the bartering chip for consummating that deal.
"My father was a sugar merchant and a trader in slaves. He owned plantations in Jamaica, and that's where I was bound, but I had not been told the why or wherefore of it. My father's dying wish, that was all my brothers would say. I was not yet sixteen years old, and a girl, so I was neither asked, nor consulted. They assumed I was stupid. But I am far from that. I knew enough not to trust either of them and time was to prove me right. They had sold me as surely as any African they trafficked from the coast of Guinea."
Nancy is a teenager you've gotta love. In contrast to the typical upbringing of British females of the time, she's been taught to read by Robert, the slave her father has brought back from his Jamaican holdings to maintain the household. ("My father saw no reason to pay a houseful of women to sit about clacking and gossiping and eating his food, their backsides getting fatter by the day.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Story, Real Page-Turner May 18, 2005
I LOVED Pirates! I took it out of the school library in hopes it would have relation to Pirates of the Caribbean with Johnny Depp, who's my understood IDOL. But, anyway, to the book.

You enter into the world of Nancy Kington, daughter of a very rich plantation owner. When her father dies, he leaves a plantation in Jamaica to her, and she befriends slaves. Then, when she is almost forced to marry, she runs away and eventually (very delayed... annoying that the book is called pirates, and they didn't get to the Pirates until about page 150!) joins a band of pirates. She makes startling discoveries, and her ex-suitor does find her.

I loved this book. It is actually 380 pages, and I read it in two days! I bought other books by Celia Rees, I now am a big fan of hers. Buy this book TODAY or else you'll be cursed by pirates!


celia rees fan
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read up me hearties, yo ho! April 18, 2004
A Kid's Review
Taking place in the 1700's, this is the story of Nancy Kington and Minierva Sharpe who are forced to run away from the Kington's Jamaican plantation, after killing a man in self defence. They first travel to a secret community hidden in rural Jamaica. The pirates arrive and Nancy and Minerva join them dressed as men. Amid mutinies, battles, and run-ins with the navy, a strange ship is chasing them! Who are they and what will they do when they catch the pirates?
I liked the never ending action and suspence in Pirates! . There was never a dull moment. I'd have to say that even though the language was sometimes hard to understand it fit the time and place of the story perfectly and helped to set the stage.If you enjoy english history, want to learn more about life at sea, or just plain old love pirate tales, then this is the book for you.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars BOLD HEARTS UNDER THE BLACK FLAG January 23, 2004
Celia Rees' latest is unvarnished historical fiction, a vibrant swashbuckler about two young women fleeing an unjust society who join a crew of pirates operating in the West Indies in the early 1700s.
I was drawn to this novel for the same reasons I wrote my own female pirate novel, "The Witch From The Sea": the irresistible idea of a young woman with few options liberating herself from the conventional "rules" of gender, race, and class by turning pirate. I've always loved pirate stories, but I was always disappointed by the traditional heroines-highborn noble ladies (often captives) who sit placidly adjusting their crinolines while the men go off and have all the fun. Like Rees, I always thought it would be much more interesting if the heroine were a working member of the pirate crew.
Rees delivers two bold female pirates. Bright, spirited teenage Nancy Kington, daughter of a Bristol merchant, is sent to the family sugar plantation in Jamaica run by her dissolute brother. Minerva Sharpe is the fierce, proud young slave who serves her. Nancy learns she is to be sold in marriage to the repulsive but wealthy sea captain Batholome, a man so cruel, his own sailors think he's the Devil. One night, she rescues Minerva from the plantation's brutal overseer, and both young women flee for their lives.
Outlaws with nowhere else to go, Nancy and Minerva are accepted into the crew of the pirate ship Deliverance under Captain Broom. Dressed in more convenient male clothing (although their shipmtes know they are women), they prove their heart and nerve in a series of compelling adventures: they endure a hurricane at sea, battle with ruthless rival pirate Edward Low, rob a gold fortress on the coast of Africa, face a mutiny, and are even briefly captured by the Royal Navy.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read. Really great story
Great read.
Really great story. Loved the characters.
Fantastic Story. Could not put it down.
Published 1 month ago by Tj
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very refreshing good book
Published 1 month ago by Katlyn
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read
I enjoyed this book. It is interesting and has many twists. You won't see the ending coming. I recommend this book.
Published 3 months ago by Sulinda Mahana
3.0 out of 5 stars such a good book!
i would have given this book more stars if the publisher took the time to fix all the typo's. i have both kindle and hardcover copy and there are so many typo's in the kindle... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Sergio Torres
1.0 out of 5 stars Pirates is not a pirate story at all............................
I did not likethis book at all , the pirate story starts on page 153 and unfortunately there is no adventure.
Published 6 months ago by Uta Schaefer
5.0 out of 5 stars .
This book took a little while to start and get into but after the second chaptor there was no going back!
Published 7 months ago by India Vickery
3.0 out of 5 stars typos typos typos
good fun story but poorly edited a typo on almost every page... they take away the enjoyment of smooth flow.
Published 7 months ago by TheBobAndSueShow
4.0 out of 5 stars Great YA Fiction
I read this book many times as a teenager. It's a great adventure book with a bit of romance that I just ate up. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
I love this book I read it while I was a teenager and recently decided I want to read it again. It is very well written and the story is very captivating! Read more
Published 13 months ago by Ashley
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome book!
This book really paints a great picture of the difficulties for women in that time period, and how living the life of a pirate was truly more freeing than being constricted to the... Read more
Published 15 months ago by Tara
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More About the Author

Celia Rees was born in Solihull, West Midlands, UK. She studied History and Politics at Warwick University and then went on to teach English in city comprehensive schools for seventeen years. She now divides her time between writing, talking to readers in schools and libraries, and teaching creative writing.

She has written many books for older children and teenagers, and has become a leading writer for Young Adults with an international reputation. Her books have been translated into 28 languages and she has been short listed for the Guardian, Whitbread and W.H. Smith Children's Book Awards, as well as numerous regional awards in the UK and America. Witch Child won the prestigious Prix Sorcières in France in 2003, and the Di Cento Prize in Italy, 2001. Her latest book, The Fool's Girl, publishes in the U.S. in July, 2010

Celia lives in Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, with her husband, Terry. Her daughter, Catrin, now lives and works in London.

To learn more about Celia and her books, visit her website at:

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