Monday, September 5, 2016

All About Middle Grade Review: Magic Marks the Spot

Magic Marks the Spot (The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates, 1) by Caroline Carlson, September 10, 2013. 358 pages. Published by HarperCollins. Source: Purchased/own.
Hilary Westfield has always dreamed of being a pirate. She can tread water for thirty-seven minutes. She can tie a knot faster than a fleet of sailors. She particularly enjoys defying authority, and she already owns a rather pointy sword. There’s only one problem: The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates refuses to let any girl join their ranks of scourges and scallywags.

Girls belong at Miss Pimm’s Finishing School for Delicate Ladies, learning to waltz, faint, and cursty. But Hilary and her dearest friend, the gargoyle, have no use for such frivolous lessons—they are pirates! (Or very nearly.)

To escape from a life of petticoats and politeness, Hilary answers a curious advertisement for a pirate crew and suddenly finds herself swept up in a seafaring adventure that may or may not involve a map without an X, a magical treasure that likely doesn’t exist, a rogue governess who insists on propriety, a crew of misfit scallywags, and the most treacherous—and unexpected—villain on the High Seas.
First Sentence:
Master Hilary Westfield:
It is with great pleasure that the League accepts your application to our Piracy Apprenticeship Program. 

I am so glad that I went ahead and purchased Magic Marks the Spot earlier this year. It was one that I really wanted to read, and, and I happened to have received the rest of the series for review so I needed book one anyways. Guys, this book is incredibly fun and Hilary makes a wonderful pirate. Gah! I loved this book and Caroline Carlson's writing!!

  • Magic Marks the Spot was everything, and I mean everything, I was hoping it would be! I loved Hilary and her tenacity! For some reason, I cannot recall why Hilary dreamed of becoming a pirate...oops.  Truthfully, there were many, many things that made me root for Hilary; her wit, and dedication to her dream, even if it was piracy, made her great. She was just one of those characters that you instinctively enjoy reading about. 
  • The entire scope of the plot was really well done. What really sold me on the overall plot were the twists that were woven into it. While I guessed the twists early on, I thought they added a great turn to Hilary's story and gave everything that happened in the beginning a new light. It was, as I said, really well done and added so much to the overall fullness of the story. The twists and adventures are something I'm sure readers of all ages will enjoy.
  • Even though I found the Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates to be, well, less than intimidating, the encompassing pirate story-line was interesting. Why, because it was entertaining to see that in order to be a pirate you had to gain admission through the league; and it's details like that that, in my opinion, help to flesh out a story. Yeah, I enjoyed it immensely. 
  • I honestly cannot say enough good things about Caroline Carlson's writing in Magic Marks the Spot!! I loved the world, characters and plot and how everything came together. This book was just so much fun to read!! Frankly, I cannot wait to jump back into this series and any other books she'll write. Yes, you can say that I am happily waiting to dive into new stories/worlds that will hopefully be coming in the future. As soon as I can, I'll be digging the final two books of The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates out of my TBR for reading!! 
Final Verdict: Magic Marks the Spot- Piracy and a finishing school...otherwise known as adventures and unexpected turn of events!! If you have not read this one you really must remedy that NOW!!

Magic Marks the Spot earns

A copy of this book was purchased by me. All thoughts are my own.

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