This story would be a great read aloud (some of the words might be tricky for my grade three students and it is not too long...about 130 pages) and would be a fun follow up to The BFG. It is full of awful creatures that steal children...but in a matter of fact way that children delight in! They will love the scary bits. They will love the grossness. It is kid perfect!
It is also full of lines that will make any adult snicker, and be perfectly sensible to children. I chuckled all the way through it.
P. 17 Captain Idryss Ebenezer Split turned to his crew and uttered an oath so foul it could NEVER be written down.
(It contained a word so rude that if an adult whispered it to themselves after bedtime, under the quilt so no one could hear, they could still be arrested and thrown in prison for a very long time.)
The illustrations are hilarious! They seem like the illustrations that would be in Inkheart. Scary!!!
Mabel is taken in the night by a perfectly frightful band of pirates after she does THE DEED (errr, picking her nose and eating it!) They are aghast when they realize they have kidnapped a GIRL. They didn't realize girls did THE DEED.
P. 19 Any final words, girl?” snarled Captain Split.
He made the word “girl” sound like how the smell of dog poo would sound if it made a noise.
It's matter if fastness reminds me of many conversations I have at school with kids all the time. (Insert wings story and balls story):
P. 23 This morning Mabel Jones had a feeling that she probably wouldn’t be going to school.
This morning she was sitting on a barrel in the cabin of a pirate ship, surrounded by a crew of excited animal pirates. It was actually surprisingly similar to being at school except, instead of a nice principal called Mr. Dobson, there was an evil wolf called Captain Idryss Ebenezer Split.
(That is pretty much the same, right?)
There is all sorts of good advice too! Like: Never trust a man who washes his underpants after just one use. (p. 63)
p. 73 She was the man who wanted her to stay with him forever in his castle. As a princess?
A prisoner, more like!
Spinning away from his arm, she snarled...
And there is even a friendship theme that runs through.....poor Omynuss Hush really does need a friend.