Author: David Grimstone
Publisher: Hodder Children’s Books • 352 pages • £5.99
Jack Sparrow has a lot to answer for. As though every pirate cliché hasn’t been flogged to death in the Pirates of the Caribbean flicks, now we have to suffer them in prose too. But you’d have to be a hardened seadog not to find Davey Swag mildly chucklesome, right down to the talking parrot named McGuffin – although you’re more likely to groan than laugh, as this really is humour for the kiddies.
The story follows the (rather stupid) titular hero as he hunts down the dread pirate Henry Morgan, who killed Davey’s parents when he was a baby. He assembles a motley crew consisting of a zombie and the aforementioned parrot (who may be more than he seems) before accidentally swiping a treasure map that could explain why Morgan is invulnerable.
There are larks aplenty, true, but so little depth that if this book was a lake you wouldn’t be able to sink a rowboat in it. Still, it’s witty and pacey enough to keep a few young scallywags away from the rum.