by James Preller, Art by Greg Ruth

Feiwel & Friends, $16.99, 32 pages

Pirate’s Guide to the First Grade is the most fun children’s book I’ve seen in a long time. The story is written in the pirate vernacular, but there’s a glossary of the terms in the back so that adults or children can understand what’s being said. The story is about a boy that’s in love with pirates on his first day in the first grade. He wants swag and treasure, not countin’ and spellin’ til it gives him an achin’ noggin. The teacher saw that he didn’t have a fine first day, he wanted treasure, so she hands him a map where X marks the spot, to find his treasure. I won’t spoil the fun and surprise. Yes, I’m a grown man, but I found it fun, so did the wife.

I must mention the high quality of this book. I see lots of children’s books, but few are of this quality. The art reminds me of Norman Rockwell, it’s that good. My hat is off to Pirate’s Guide to the First Grade cover and dust jacket design artist; the art grabs your attention. With a little care, this book could become a treasured family heirloom, enjoyed by many generations.

Reviewed by David Broughton