. . Then always be a pirate.
To celebrate International Talk Like a Pirate Day, HL Carpenter takes over my blog to discuss their latest YA book–Pirate Summer. Take it away HL!–Chris
The creative genius of HL Carpenter shines in their latest book. Pirate Summer is the story of a sister and brother who discover the importance of each other and the consequences of lying. Enter the handsome privateer who steals Josey’s heart and commandeers her on the adventure of her life and you now have the perfect summer read for all ages.
Fifteen year old Josey is a liar. She’d like to stop. But after Mom left, the lies started popping out, like the time Josey left her little brother at the library and told Dad he’d run away.
Then Josey meets a boy who tells bigger whoppers than she does. He says he’s the son of a privateer who’s been dead two centuries. He’s so convincing Josey’s brother believes every word and sets off to find the privateer’s hidden treasure.
When her brother disappears, Josey is sure she knows where he’s gone. But everyone thinks she’s lying again. Everyone, that is, except the so-called privateer’s son. He knows she’s telling the truth because jeweled riches are only part of his tale. There’s also the snooperscope, a device that makes time leaps possible, like the one that brought him to the present.
The story is fantastical…and yet Josey will do anything to save her brother, including traveling back in time two hundred years with a boy she can’t trust.
The basic tale hadn’t changed since the first time I’d heard it, though Gran had added a few embellishments. I wondered who she’d been practicing on, then remembered she was on call as a substitute teacher for the Sea Cove school system. Thanks to her, generations of Sea Cove residents knew the legend of Alastair Morgan, a pirate who’d haunted the Florida coast during the early 1800s.
Andy jiggled on the seat. He had a vivid imagination, a by-product of his oversize I.Q., and he was caught up in the midst of the hurricane Gran was describing. The huge storm had blown the Morgan pirate ship off course and into Sea Cove.
“Alastair Morgan was familiar with Sea Cove,” Gran said. “He sought refuge in the harbor. When the skies lightened, the rain slowed. He rowed to shore with his son, some of his crew and seven trunks of gold and jewels. They had buried the treasure and were rowing back to their ship when the storm started again.”
“Didn’t he realize the calm was only the eye of the hurricane?” Andy asked.
“Good question, and no, he didn’t. He was surprised when the winds and rain picked up, only from the opposite direction.”
“Silly of him. He should have known. Being a sailor and all.”
Gran met my gaze over Andy’s head. Her lips twitched.
I grinned, forgetting for a moment how annoyed I was. By the time I remembered, Gran had looked away, out the front windshield.
She gasped. “Brake, Josey!”
I jerked my head around. I’d only been distracted for a second—exactly enough time for the truck to drift to the right side of the road. A skinny teenage boy walked there, his back to us.
“We’re going to hit him!” Andy shouted.
I leaned on the horn, smashed the brake, and yanked the wheel to the left. The tires screeched. The seatbelt dug into my hips. Andy shouted again as an invisible force shoved him back, then forward. Gran shot out her arm to hold him in place.
In front of us, the boy whirled. He yelled and raised his palms toward us as if he could ward off the truck with his bare hands. At the last moment, he flung himself onto the dirty sand beyond the edge of the black pavement.
I lost sight of him as the pickup jolted to a shuddering, shaking stop, sideways across the highway.
Florida-based mother/daughter author duo HL Carpenter write sweet, clean fiction that is suitable for everyone in your family. The Carpenters write from their studios in Carpenter Country, a magical place that, like their stories, is unreal but not untrue. When they’re not writing, they enjoy exploring the Land of What-If and practicing the fine art of Curiosity. Visit their website to enjoy gift reads and excerpts and to find out what’s happening in Carpenter Country.