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The Pirates! In an Adventure with Napoleon: A Novel Hardcover – May 19, 2009

6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Pirate Captain returns in this installment of Defoe's loony pirate yarns (The Pirates! in an Adventure with Ahab; The Pirates! in an Adventure with Communists), only to lose the Pirate of the Year awards. (Though Captain's beard is fantastically glossy and luxuriant, he has oiled himself in preparation for a swimsuit round that doesn't exist.) Smarting from his loss, Captain retreats to the island of St. Helena, where—to the chagrin of his crew, including the pirate with the scarf, and the pirate who liked kittens and sunsets—he delves into bee husbandry. Alas, geography, goats and the machinations of Napoleon Bonaparte threaten to disrupt a life of bucolic contemplation. Lovers of Monty Python and the novels of Cabin Boy star Chris Elliott will appreciate this sendup of swashbuckling sea adventures. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

GIDEON DEFOE is the author of The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists; The Pirates! In an Adventure with Ahab; and The Pirates! In an Adventure with Communists. You could be forgiven for thinking that he is a bit of a one-trick pony. He lives in London.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Pantheon (May 19, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375423982
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375423987
  • Product Dimensions: 4.6 x 0.8 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,398,902 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By sb-lynn TOP 500 REVIEWER on June 2, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is the 4th book of the Pirates! series by Gideon Defoe. These are the previous books, in order:

The Pirates! An Adventure with Scientists

The Pirates! An Adventure with Whaling

The Pirates! An Adventure with Communists.

The best way to describe these books is by saying that they are very, VERY, funny. In fact, a good way to tell if these books are your cuppa is simply to pick up one and read the first page - if you haven't laughed out loud by the end of that page, this may not be for you. Me, I couldn't get past the first paragraph.

They are about the adventures of Pirate Captain, an egotistical and woefully dimwitted, vapid leader of a the most oddball crew ever to hit the high seas . Except for Jennifer, the Victorian lady who decided to become a pirate, they aren't mentioned by name, and instead by description. There's the pirate with the long legs, or the pirate with the red scarf. There's the sassy pirate, and my favorite, the pirate with the nut allergy. (And in this book we meet a new crew member - the pirate who's arm candy.)

In each of these books, the inept Pirate Captain leads this crew into some absurd adventure, to which they loyally follow him. In this book. Pirate Captain loses a contest for "Pirate of the Year", and decides he's going to become a beekeeper. He ends up buying a fake deed to the island of St. Helena, where he runs into the equally egotistical Napolean Bonaparte. They end up vying for the same position - Head of the St. Helena Resident's Association.

This summary really does little service to express how very witty and funny these books are. They are quick reads - you easily read them in one or two sittings.
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Format: Hardcover
Gideon Defoe's Pirate! adventure series could quite possibly be one of the most cleverly conceived treatises on existentialism yet conceived. Sure, each installment is anachronistic, brief, side-splittingly funny, or what the erudites term "humorous", and given the fact that the whole series not-so-subtly gains its impetus from Defoe's unrequited love, is besides the point. Doesn't existentialism entail all of the above anyway?

In any case, take Defoe's latest exposition, The Pirates! in an Adventure with Napoleon, whereby our faithful and true Pirate Captain takes a brief respite to ponder his place in the pirate world, and whether perhaps beekeeping or even the unparalleled superciliousness of an exiled Napoleon can provide some meaning or contentment in this lifetime. For it is here that our fearless captain comes to a realization all Pirate Captains must eventually consider:

The Pirate Captain sighed. `Well then, I suppose we'd better go and see what's more interesting than me.'

Beyond the philosophical reverberations of the work, we have the usual salty complement to offset the dueling shenanigans of the Pirate Captain and Napoleon; specifically, the pirate with a scarf, the pirate in green, and Jennifer the Victorian all lend a supporting hand. As this is a work of action and adventure, while reading of luxurious beards, ham and the highly democratic war over the St. Helena Residents' association, take heed and consider your place in the pirate world.
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By Juliana Kruse on July 4, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I bought the series on a whim to try out new books. I am so glad I did. They are so hilarious and easy to read. Perfect for lazing about in a hammock, getting lost in adventure. I highly recommend them. My favorite so far is the first one (scientists), but I have yet to read the last one yet.
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