I picked this book up at the library, wondering what it had to offer. It was a pirate story after all. I typically don’t enjoy reading things about pirate life. Violence. Weapons. Mean-spiritedness. Stealing. Raids. Greed. Alcoholic binges. Harshness. Abrasive. You get the idea.
And while Fish by Gregory Mone, does have these things as the environment, the main character FISH is anything but your typical pirate. He is respectful and kind, dependable and trustworthy. Although he could never really be a pirate, his heart does belong to the sea.
We first meet Fish as Maurice, one among nine of the Reidy children. The Reidy’s were farmers, but Maurice wasn’t good at farm work. His siblings often became frustrated with him and ridiculed him because of it. One autumn day, a surprising thing happened and Maurice discovered he was good at something – swimming. HE was dubbed FISH from that day on.
When the family horse died, someone was going to need to go to the city to work for Uncle Gerry to make some money. Since The farm couldn’t do without it’s workers, the family sent Fish in hopes that he would somehow be able to do something right.
I don’t want to spoil to much, but an unexpected string of events lands Fish on a pirate boat of all places! Here Fish learns how to not-fight – yep, that’s right – NOT-fight, how to be a true friend, how to decipher clues on coins, how to foil a mutiny and so much more!
Boys in particular will enjoy this book. However, if you choose to read this book aloud, which is what I did, I suspect you will find even your girls enjoying the story. Both Mattison and Mason exclaimed at the end - “What that’s all?” I felt the same way. The book ended too soon, we weren’t ready to bid farewell to the crew of the Scurvy Mistress.