Perfect Picture Book Friday – The Pirate’s Parrot

In case you’re wondering, I had a lovely chat with Santa on Wednesday at the Brick Church Holiday Fair in New York City and you are all on the Nice List!  (So you can breathe a sigh of relief – I know some of you were a little worried that all that chocolate might have tipped the scales, as it were, to the Naughty side, but you’re good :))
I also sat next to a pile of Jamie Lee Curtis’s books – but not, as it turned out, Jamie Lee.  (She probably heard she’d be sitting next to a groundhog and a sheep, not to mention a relatively unknown author, and that violates some clause of her appearance contract.)  But her illustrator, Laura Cornell, was happy to sit with us and she was delightful!  I was very glad to meet her and have her company for the three hours or so that we were in attendance.  I did not take any pictures because I wasn’t kidding when I told you this was a fair of epic proportions.  We’re talking Park Avenue glitz.  I was afraid you might sustain eye damage from all the glitter 🙂
Anyway, look how far down the page I am without a single mention of Perfect Picture Books!  That just proves how dazzled I was from that fair – I haven’t recovered my senses yet 🙂  But now… it’s time… for Perfect Picture Books!!!  (I’m feeling the need for theme music – anyone want to sing?)
The Pirate’s Parrot
Written By: Lyn Rossiter Mcfarland
Illustrated By: Jim Mcfarland
Tricycle Press, March 2004, Fiction
Suitable For: ages 5-8
Themes/Topics: pirates, doing a job well, defying the expected, being different
Opening: “When Captain Cur’s parrot died, he thud-thumped and tapped on his wooden leg all night long until his crew thought they’d go mad.
Then at dawn, he tap, tap, crunched!
“Mr. Bellows!” he roared.  “I’ve stepped on me monocle!”
Quartermaster Bellows rushed to his captain’s side.
“I have no bird,” snarled the Cur.  “I have no monocle.  Me near vision’s a blur, and me mood is bad and getting worse.  So what are you going to do about it?

Brief Synopsis:  The First and Second Mate are dispatched to solve the problem, but they make a slight error… the parrot they bring back is actually a teddy bear.  Unwilling to face the Captain’s wrath, the crew tell him it’s a parrot (and without his monocle he can’t see well enough to tell the difference!) and they teach the bear to be a pirate’s parrot.  Not until they board the Sea Weasel, ship of the dreaded pirate Captain McDagger, do they find out what a good job they did!
Why I Like This Book:  To start with, it has pirates in it, and I love books with pirates 🙂  But beyond that, how can you not love a book where a scurvy crew puts one over on their Captain by giving him a teddy bear instead of a parrot because he can’t see well enough to tell the difference?  And then names said bear Barr and teaches it to swagger and squawk, swashbuckle and spit.  This book carries a message of believing you can do a job well even if you’re not the usual type of person (or animal or thing) to do it, but it’s also just plain, flat out fun!  And Barr’s got another secret as well… but you’ll have to read the book to find out what it is 🙂

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

Now, since last week’s Friday post was long, you are excused early today 🙂

Please join us Monday when Clara Bowman-Jahn shares the story of the idea behind her debut picture book – Annie’s Special Day!

And PPBF bloggers, please leave your post-specific link in the list below so we can all come see what fabulous books you’ve selected this week!

Have a GREAT weekend, everyone! 🙂

48 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – The Pirate’s Parrot

  1. Laura Anne Miller says:

    Susanna, what relatively unknown author were you sitting next to? I know I'd be star-struck sitting next to you! Sounds like an amazing event! Love the sounds of the book. ( I'm glad you explained about the parrot – I thought my eyeglass Rx was going bad looking at the cover.)

  2. Kimberley says:

    This book looks great. I think my 7 year old boy would love it.

    Brick Church Fair! Memories from my childhood flood back. I miss NYC. I grew on Park and loved the lighting of the trees and Christmas caroling.

  3. Angela Brown says:

    LOL! Okay, I'd have to check out this book just to see how they managed to teach a teddy bear to say, “Roar – uh – Squawk! Polly want a cracker” 🙂

  4. pennyklostermann says:

    Ha! This book sounds so funny! I just put it on hold at my library! Thanks, Matey! Me heart's a poundin' with anticipation!

  5. Patricia Nozell says:

    Pirates, a parrot & a teddy bear! What a fun book; think I'll follow Penny's lead & hold it at the library.
    Can't imagine that anyone outshone you at the fair, Susannah! And speaking of NYC at the holidays, was strolling by Lord & Taylor on Fifth yesterday (between buying books & picking up books at the library) & viewed their holiday windows: Santa surrounded by books in one window & books appearing in several other windows, too. Worth a walk-by.

  6. Clarike Bowman-Jahn says:

    Wow, Susanna!! I am so impressed. A NYC church fair! 🙂 Just you being in NYC is amazing.

    Thanks for putting me on the nice list. I was worried there for a minute.

    This book sounds like it could be a favorite of any young boy. Pirates are so cool. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  7. Kirsten Larson says:

    I love pirate books too, and the thought of a teddy bear on a pirate's shoulder is hilarious! I'm glad you had a safe trip.

  8. Stacy S. Jensen says:

    Glad the fair was fun. The book looks great and the list too. It's like a Thanksgiving feast and I can't sit down to eat just yet. I have one more thing (well several for a class project), then I can read through the books.

  9. Patricia Tilton says:

    What a fun and quirky book. Like that the mates trick the captain and so will the kids. Are we going to post PPB next Friday. Just thought I'd ask. Will do what ever you decide.

  10. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    You know, I thought about cancelling PPBF next week, then thought it might be confusing because some people have scheduled their posts ahead. I should have put a note in this post, but I think I'll leave it up to everyone to do what they like. I may not post a book, but I will post the list for anyone who's post is scheduled. Thanks for asking.

  11. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Oh, I used to LOVE walking by to look at all the decorated store windows – they were so amazing! I don't remember which stores, besides Lord & Taylor and FAO Schwartz, but I know there were quite a few, and we'd walk along and see them all! Just magical!

  12. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    Oh, the trees up and down Park Avenue are lovely, aren't they? And all the fancy store windows as Patricia mentioned, like Lord & Taylor and Sachs and FAO Schwartz! I may have to come up with a reason to go back down so I have time to look 🙂 Date: Fri, 16 Nov 2012 12:31:32 +0000

  13. Rhythm says:

    Oh! This looks great! A scary pirate with a “swaggering” bear! What a great combination. I'll have to check this one out!

  14. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    All I know about scurvy is that you're supposed to eat vitamin c to avoid it – my babysitter used to tell us we'd get it if we didn't finish our orange juice 🙂

    Julie Rowan-Zoch wrote, in response to Susanna Leonard Hill:

    Read a great book about scurvy once, by Stephen Bown!

    User's website
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  15. Robyn Campbell says:

    You're on fire with this one, Susanna. The Brick Church Holiday Fair sounds wonderful. I bet you were glad to get to go. Congrads! SOunds like a good time was had by you. 🙂

  16. Robyn Campbell says:

    P.S. I'll look for it in my library. Though it might be too young for our taxpayer funded library system. *sigh* (It's awful)

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