Thursday, September 3, 2015

MG Review: The Pirate Code (Hooks Revenge #2) by Heidi Schulz

24397055Published by: Disney Hyperion on September 15th 2015
Genres: Middle Grade Adventure Fantasy
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Source:  Publisher via NetGalley

"Fresh off a fearsome encounter with the Neverland crocodile, Jocelyn Hook decides the most practical plan is to hunt down her father's famous fortune. After all, she'll need the gold to fund her adventuring in the future. (And luckily, Hook left her the map.)

But the map proves to be a bit harder to crack than Jocelyn had hoped, and she's convinced that the horrible Peter Pan might be the only one with the answers. Of course, he doesn't really feel like helping her, so Jocelyn takes the only reasonable course of action left to her: she kidnaps his mother. Evie, though, is absolutely thrilled to be taken prisoner, so Jocelyn's daring ploy doesn't have quite the effect she'd planned for.

Along with the problem of her all-too-willing captive, Jocelyn must also contend with Captain Krueger, whose general policy is that no deed is too dastardly when it comes to stealing Hook's treasure. And with the ever-shifting Whens of the Neverland working against her as well, Jocelyn, Evie, Roger, and the rest of the Hook's Revenge crew have their work cut out for them. 

In this rambunctious showdown between characters new and old, Jocelyn puts her own brand of pirating to the test in a quest to save her future and those she loves."

 I really adore re-tellings of classic stories and thought Hook's Revenge was utterly delightful.  Jocelyn was both willful, tomboyish, stubborn, but also enduring and adorable.  She had some self doubts, mostly because she really wanted to live up to the Hook name, but also had such an adventuress spirit.  One that  took her and Roger on an adventure that led her to vanquish the crocodile, recover her father's hook and a key to a locked box that would lead to her father's treasure trove.  So, when I heard there was a sequel coming out,  I was eager to read it.   The Pirate Code begins shortly after the events of the first book.  Jocelyn has her map to the treasure, but unfortunately it is written in a code which she lacks the key for.  Therefore, Jocelyn and her band of pirates are left going on a treasure hunt to find the key, but she isn't the only who wants the treasure.  A pirate with razor sharp teeth is hot on their trail.  
The Pirate Code was a great follow up to the first novel, it had the most wonderful "piratical atmosphere,"  yeah I like that word.  Schulz does pirates well, I loved everything from the descriptions of ghostly wrecked ships, pirate battles aboard deck, quest for treasure to the "gulls shrill screams with the scent of brine, unwashed men, blood, and rotgut grog in the air."  Schulz seemed to take the second book into uncharted waters, while staying true to the magic of Netherland and its beloved characters.  She plays a lovely homage to J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan with the inclusion of mermaids, fairies, and characters like Peter Pan, Tiger Lily, the Lost Boys and lots and lots of adventure. Oh and how Jocelyn grows and comes into herself as Captain of her crew.  She develops her own sense of what the Pirate's Code means to her and the beautiful friendship that she shares with Roger is so sweet.   I even loved the addition of the new characters, which added layers to the plot and placed Jocelyn in "quite a pickle."  But, it is the sarcastic narrator that ultimately made this book for me, he made me smile and chuckle on so many different occasions with his wise cracks and snide comments to the reader. 

"Morals can be such burdensome things.  That is precisely why I am happy to remain unafflicted by them."

 He makes for a fun reading experience and I just loved em'   I'd also be remiss if I didn't mention the delightful illustrations by John Hendrix, with my favorite being a particular scene involving porridge. Plus it was fun to use the key at the end of the book to try and figure out the  secret message on the cover and the one found inside the book.  Overall, I highly recommend this for fans of pirate books and anyone who enjoys a wonderful re-telling of a favorite classic.   Although the story had a complete ending, meaning no cliffhanger and things were wrapped up, I still can't help feeling like I would love to see more books in the series.  I've read that Schulz may even have some ideas on the subject, so I hope this will happen someday.

Favorite quote: "The thing about friends is, you never know when you might need them. It's always best to keep them imprisoned nearby.”

I received an eARC for free from the Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 
As a side note:  There is a giveaway going on until the 8th at Goodreads.  


  1. Sounds like a great book. It is a series I haven't started yet- but it is promising to hear how much you liked this sequel. The fact that you want more in the series says a lot. :)

    1. Aaaarrrrgggghhhh! there be pirates, well and it does include Peter Pan. Who can pass on the two? I do hope there will be a sequel though :) Thanks for stopping by Jess