Overall Score: 9.5/10
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Pirates
Series: Yes, Book 1
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Release Date: February 28, 2017
Source: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
Book Summary (From GoodReads)
A 17-year-old pirate captain intentionally allows herself to get captured by enemy pirates in this thrilling YA adventure.
Sent on a mission to retrieve an ancient hidden map—the key to a legendary treasure trove—seventeen-year-old pirate captain Alosa deliberately allows herself to be captured by her enemies, giving her the perfect opportunity to search their ship.
More than a match for the ruthless pirate crew, Alosa has only one thing standing between her and the map: her captor, the unexpectedly clever and unfairly attractive first mate, Riden. But not to worry, for Alosa has a few tricks up her sleeve, and no lone pirate can stop the Daughter of the Pirate King.
This book was absolutely wonderful. It was a perfect mix of action, romance, adventure, and magic that kept me entranced until the last page. I loved the characters, the plot, the story, and the world-building. It was almost impossible to put down and the wait for the sequel is going to be slightly torturous.
The book begins with Alosa, the daughter of the pirate king, being captured by an enemy pirate ship and held for ransom. However, it turns out that Alosa allowed herself to be captured in order to search the enemy ship for the second piece of a map that leads to unimaginable treasure. This premise set the stage perfectly for the games that ensued. Alosa and Riden, the first mate on the enemy ship, begin a dangerous battle of the wills as he attempts to extract information about her father.
Alosa herself is one of my new favorite YA heroines. She is sassy, strong, confident, independent, and smart. Plus she’s a pirate captain. Her backstory is slowly revealed throughout the novel and it added another dimension to her character as we get to know the woman behind the swagger. I loved how she was entirely accepting of her femininity from the beginning and, at times, how she used it to her advantage. Her developing relationship with Riden ran the gamut from hilarious to heart-felt and touching.
What I truly enjoyed about this book is that the pirates run the gamut from only slightly morally corrupt (like Alosa and Riden) to truly awful people. There wasn’t a character that I remember who hadn’t killed at least one person and done some very questionable things. I loved how unrepentant about the pirate lifestyle all of the characters were. The plot was full of unexpected twists and turns, particularly in the battle of wills between Riden and Alosa.
This was an incredibly fast-paced read that I would recommend to any YA adventure or fantasy fan. I will be eagerly awaiting both the release of this book (so I have an excuse to reread it) and the sequel.