Kids Can Press, $16.95, 32 pages
Small Saul, a peg-legged barrel of a lad with a dandy’s goatee, errant tooth, and spectacles the size of dinner plates, was born to go to sea. Alas, he doesn’t meet the Navy’s stature requirements, so off he sails in the only direction open to him — he becomes a pirate. This charming book from author and illustrator Ashley Spires follows Small Saul on his journey to achieve piratical acceptance and arrrg-miration. Pictures and words work together to bring detail without murk or clutter. For Small Saul is a goodhearted fellow, and his light touch with cookies and decorating ultimately endears him to his shipmates, and will delight parents and children alike. For boys and girls, K-2.
Reviewed by Heather Shaw