Pirates, Pirates! (A Rogue’s Tale)
Written by Saoirse O’Mara
Cover by Svenja Liv
This is the third book in a series: The Lost Diadem (Part 1) and Trouble in the Mage Guild (Part II) preceding this volume. I did not read the first two, but had no trouble picking up the fantasy adventure in this newest release.
Tayla is a young teen living in Davon. She had previously met Govon when she picked his pocket to obtain money in a desperate attempt to survive. Govon is also struggling to support himself. They become friends. After an adventure to find the lost diadem, he becomes apprenticed to Dalen as a trainee for the City Guard. Tayla is adopted by a tavern owner and his family. In this third adventure, the story opens with Tayla witnessing a sailor being beaten on the docks. She brings him to her friend Larissa, a priestess in the Temple. Unfortunately, he dies before he can explain who attacked him. Tayla asks Govon for help in solving the mystery, but she is upset and dismayed when he informs her that he is too busy preparing for his final evaluation to help her. So Tayla is determined to find answers on her own. Larissa and her friend Katia vow to assist her. Things get murkier as a merchant ship is attacked, and a prominent woman citizen is beaten. Tayla goes undercover and lurks in the taverns spying on sailors trying to uncover who is behind the plot. Will she be successful? Who is behind the murder? What do pirates have to do with the plot? Will Tayla be reconciled with Govon?
This is a perfect fantasy adventure for tweens and young adults. It touches upon many of the issues they are grappling with in their lives. O’Mara addresses loyalty, family bonds, hard work, friendship and the search to discover right and wrong. The characters are well developed and the story line moves along quickly with just enough twists and turns to keep things interesting. The beautiful cover art captures the mood and setting. The length is under 120 pages so it will not deter a middle grade reader. Perfect book for a rainy afternoon. Hope to see more from this talented writer.
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