The Pirate Train is a fun picture book that was written by Nicole Plyler Fisk for her pirate and train-mad 5-year-old son Jack.
It follows the adventures of the YoHo-Matey! family who are a happy, hardworking bunch. It's as entertaining as it is educational, providing little readers with a fun story that introduces a number of important life lessons. The first is that families should pull together to help out with the chores, and that sometimes, you can even make them fun. Skidding across the deck of the pirate ship with mops on their feet looks like a very enjoyable way of helping out !
However, it's not all fun and games and being a pirate does have its downsides, especially if you get seasick. The next life lesson is that families stick together through thick and thin and, just like the three musketeers, it's all for one and one for all. If Pirate Bro can't sail the seven seas any more, neither will the rest of the family.
While Pirate Sis is intially peeved, she soon learns that they can have just as much fun on a pirate train and there's even a special surprise at the end that makes her very happy. The moral of the story is that if life gives you lemons, you make lemonade - a lovely feel-good, uplifting, positive message to encourage children to work around problems and not get disheartened whenever things don't go their way.
The story is written in rhyme, which always makes it more fun to read out loud at bedtime, but as it's written in American English, I did have a hard time making some of the rhymes (such as Pirate Mom and parrot Tom) sound convincing with a British accent !
It's a lovely story though, with fun, detailed illustrations that really bring the text alive.
star rating : 4/5
Disclosure : We received the book in order to write an honest review.