ARC Book Review: The Pirate Code by Heidi Schulz

Posted August 13, 2015 by Debby in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!! This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ARC Book Review: The Pirate Code by Heidi SchulzThe Pirate Code by Heidi Schulz
Series: Hook's Revenge #2
Published by Disney-Hyperion on September 15th, 2015
Genres: Adventure, Fantasy, Middle Grade
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

Fresh off a fearsome encounter with the Neverland crocodile, Jocelyn Hook decides the most practical plan is to hunt down her father's famous fortune. After all, she'll need the gold to fund her adventuring in the future. (And luckily, Hook left her the map.)

But the map proves to be a bit harder to crack than Jocelyn had hoped, and she's convinced that the horrible Peter Pan might be the only one with the answers. Of course, he doesn't really feel like helping her, so Jocelyn takes the only reasonable course of action left to her: she kidnaps his mother. Evie, though, is absolutely thrilled to be taken prisoner, so Jocelyn's daring ploy doesn't have quite the effect she'd planned for.

Along with the problem of her all-too-willing captive, Jocelyn must also contend with Captain Krueger, whose general policy is that no deed is too dastardly when it comes to stealing Hook's treasure. And with the ever-shifting Whens of the Neverland working against her as well, Jocelyn, Evie, Roger, and the rest of the Hook's Revenge crew have their work cut out for them.

In this rambunctious showdown between characters new and old, Jocelyn puts her own brand of pirating to the test in a quest to save her future and those she loves.

4.5 Stars

When I read Hook’s Revenge last year, I had practically no expectations and got one of my favorite books of 2014. So to say that I was excited for the sequel would be a bit of an understatement. The Pirate Code is a brilliant follow-up to Hook’s Revenge, cementing this as one of my favorite middle grade series of all time.

The Pirate Code has everything I love most about middle grade books. Jocelyn continues being awesome and adorable. This little girl takes charge of a pirate ship of adults who act like children, and she’s on a mission. She’s going to find her father’s treasure, and no one’s going to stand in her way. She’s so strong and stubborn, wonderfully flawed, you just can’t help but cheer her on. And her stories are still told by the best, most sarcastic narrator ever. He makes me so happy. And to those who have read the first book – yes, you will probably figure out who it is in this sequel.

The side characters are also completely adorable. Of course there’s Roger, but we’ll get to him. There’s the crew, who are so hilariously immature, and Meriwether, Jocelyn’s faerie friend who is too cute for words. But Jocelyn also meets Evie, who she has a bit of a surprise connection and tentative friendship with, and she encounters Tiger Lily on more than one occasion, who, in my opinion, wins all of the awards for taking absolutely no shit from Peter Pan. There are some other new allies and villains, and overall, what I love is that all of these characters are so distinct, quirky, and entertaining.

The plot of this book is mostly focused on this treasure hunt that Hook left behind. It has all the qualities of the best middle grade adventure stories. There are battles, betrayal, puzzles, and much exploration of Neverland. My absolute favorite part came right at the end, where there was a riddle that was totally reminiscent of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – the potions test to get to the stone. So much fun. I actually got out a pen and paper to solve it myself, so YEAH, I was very much entertained and engrossed by this story.

As to the ship, we are in the ocean of feels, yes sir. I mean, it’s a middle grade ship – you can’t really expect major kissing or whatever – but the feels are real. Every time Roger looks at Jocelyn with his “smile just for her”, I died. And that happened a lot. Those two are absolutely adorable and perfect and they will have long and happy lives together. (How much would I give for a kiss between the two though? SO MUCH.)

I think the only thing that really saddens me here is that this is the end of the series for now. I mean, the series might go on, and Schulz has said she has ideas about where it could go, but for now this is the last book contracted for the series. For the record, I could read more about these characters and this world forever. This could be a 20 book series and I would still want more. So, Disney. Take note, please. This series is a winner and it deserves more.

Summing Up

The Pirate Code is a delight, and Heidi Schulz is a storytelling master. I love her sarcastic narrator, her wonderfully quirky characters, and all of their entertaining adventures. This is a brilliant series if you want to relax and just have some genuine fun. It’s one that I’ll probably go back to quite often. ROGER AND JOCELYN 4 LYFE.

GIF it to me straight!

Recommended To:

Anyone who has ever liked any kind of middle grade story ever.
(Fans of Harry Potter, Lemony Snicket, and Rick Riordan in particular.)

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3 responses to “ARC Book Review: The Pirate Code by Heidi Schulz

  1. […] The Pirate Code by Heidi Schulz: I already read this and obviously I adored it. This is one of my favorite middle grade series of all time! I’m just really sad this is the end (for now). Tonight the Streets Are Ours by Leila Sales: I loved This Song Will Save You Life so much that all of her books are on my to read list now. And this cover is just stunninggggg. LOVE it. […]

    • I can’t wait to have the finished copy so I can really go back and forth with the key more easily. Just one more thing about e-books that sucks ^^; But I love those puzzles, seriously.