Jean Laffite: The Pirate Who Saved America
This biography of the infamous pirate Jean Laffite is a real-life, action-packed adventure. Since he was a young boy, Jean longed to be a pirate, and with the help of his brothers and uncle, he became one when he was just a teenager. Soon the only life he knew was on the high seas—a life full of glory, riches, disaster, and revenge. When he finally settled down in New Orle...more
Hardcover, 47 pages
Published April 1st 2012 by Abrams Books for Young Readers
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May 25, 2012 Barbara rated it 3 of 5 stars
Since little is known about Jean Lafitte, the subject of this biography, the author has relied on Lafitte's own journal written from 1845 to 1850. When I first opened this book, I wondered if I would learn anything knew about this man who is often considered a hero in New Orleans, where I lived for 25 years. I was pleasantly surprised to learn quite a lot that I didn't already know from the stories about Lafitte that were passed on from person to person. For instance, I had no idea that Lafitte...more
I loved the illustrations in this book. They were eye-appealing and seemingly historidcally accurate. The subject matter is rather sophisticated, so it might be best read aloud to a child in 3rd grade or so. There are full-page illustrations on almost every other page and half page illustrations on other pages. THe large-sied book has 47 pages including an index. The story is about Jean Laffite, a young Jewish boy born in Port-au-Prince in the 1780s. The book definitely has a Jewish focus, begin...more
Picture book biographies have become commonplace in the last 5 years. They are a great way to introduce kids to historical figures they may not encounter otherwise. I really like the story of Jean Laffite. A pirate who eventually helps win the Battle of New Orleans. Why had I never heard of him before? I would recommend this book to boys and girls who love all things history, or who love all things pirate. The pictures accompanying the text are excellent and give the reader a good sense of time...more
Oct 28, 2013 Christina rated it 4 of 5 stars
I never knew that Jean Laffite, noted pirate of New Orleans, was Jewish! This lovely picture book explains that he wanted to become a pirate at an early age, and he harbored a grudge against Spain specifically because of their persecution of Jews. He became a respected citizen in New Orleans, but was still a privateer and even became leader of 500 buccaneers. Interesting story and dramatic life, well told. Loved the art, beautiful digital illustrations that look as if they are oil paintings!
That was very cool. It certainly heightens the magic that immediately after I read this book, I drove over to see the ruins of Lafitte's mansion. A lot of suppositions were made about a man we know relatively little about, but it makes for a compelling narrative. The Jewish angle was very interesting, and not often adopted, though very likely accurate. The beautiful digital art complements the narrative well.
May 15, 2012 Sandy Brehl rated it 3 of 5 stars
Rich, dramatic images help make this an appealing read, but it is a much more complex and traditional narrative of Laffite's life than would typically be considered a "picture book". For an older reader it provides a very human and appealing approach to earl American history,including the author's note after the text.
An interesting biography of the pirate who helped win the Battle of New Orleans. I had no idea he was Jewish and that there were a good number of Jewish bucaneers. The illustrations are a bit too stylized for my taste.
Apr 01, 2012 Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy) rated it 4 of 5 stars
I enjoy Susan Goldman Rubin's books. I seem to learn new things all the time. This time I learned about Jewish Pirates, particularly one individual, from the late 18th/early 19th century. Fascinating.
I’ll bet you thought you knew everything about Jean Laffite. Did you know the pirate was Jewish, spelled his name with two f’s as opposed to two t’s and lived out his life in exile in St. Louis?
There is a school of thought that Jean headed to Missouri where he lived under a fake name, married and had children and asked that his memoirs be published after 107 years. Susan Goldman Rubin tells this version in the children’s picture book, “Jean Laffite: The Pirate Who Saved America.”