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Hook's Revenge #1

Hook's Revenge

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Captain Hook's feisty daughter hits the high seas to avenge her father's death at the jaws of the Neverland crocodile in Heidi Schulz's spirited middle-grade debut.

Twelve-year-old Jocelyn dreams of becoming every bit as daring as her infamous father, Captain James Hook. Her grandfather, on the other hand, intends to see her starched and pressed into a fine society lady. When she's sent to Miss Eliza Crumb-Biddlecomb's Finishing School for Young Ladies, Jocelyn's hopes of following in her father's fearsome footsteps are lost in a heap of dance lessons, white gloves, and way too much pink.

So when Jocelyn receives a letter from her father challenging her to avenge his untimely demise at the jaws of the Neverland crocodile, she doesn't hesitate-here at last is the adventure she has been waiting for. But Jocelyn finds that being a pirate is a bit more difficult than she'd bargained for. As if attempting to defeat the Neverland's most fearsome beast isn't enough to deal with, she's tasked with captaining a crew of woefully untrained pirates, outwitting cannibals wild for English cuisine, and rescuing her best friend from a certain pack of lost children, not to mention that pesky Peter Pan who keeps barging in uninvited.

The crocodile's clock is always ticking in Heidi Schulz's debut novel, a story told by an irascible narrator who is both dazzlingly witty and sharp as a sword. Will Jocelyn find the courage to beat the incessant monster before time runs out?

304 pages, Hardcover

First published September 16, 2014

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About the author

Heidi Schulz

4 books217 followers
NYT bestselling author Heidi Schulzlies to children for fun and profit. She is the author of Hook's Revenge, Hook's Revenge: The Pirate Code, and Giraffes Ruin Everything. Heidi lives in Oregon with her husband, their teen daughter, a terrible little dog, and dozens of dust bunnies.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 286 reviews
Profile Image for Erica.
1,316 reviews432 followers
May 2, 2015
Before I talk about how fun this story is, I have to make two confessions:
1) I have never liked the Peter Pan story (with one exception);
2) I internet-know the author and told her that if I ever met her in person, I would hug her face off and then I did meet her in person last year when she was touring for this very book and I did actually hug her face off. I even have a picture but I'm not going to share it because I don't want you to see how terrified Heidi looks in my vicious embrace because I would like you to believe she was happy to be face-hugged by me, the face-hugger.

So let me just share the prologue of this book with you so that you will understand how I was...ahem...hooked right off the bat.
It's called: Children Have Sticky Fingers and Ask Impertinent Questions <--see? Already funny!

There have always been pirates. Why, even as far back as Eve, on the day she was considering whether or not to eat that apple, a pirate was most certainly planning to sail in and take it from her.
I expect that you'd like to know about the most famous of all pirates, Captain James Hook. As I am the world's foremost expert on him, naturally you turned to me. Children come to me all the time, begging to hear what I know. I graciously seat them in a circle around me, lean in, and whisper, "Not a chance."
I don't like children all that much.
However, last Thursday I became an old man. It occurs to me that someday I will die. Like many my age, I hope that I may go peacefully, in the midst of a hostage situation or a failed arson attempt. But I digress...

...and there's more but I have tired of transcribing.

Anyway, you can see there's a Snickety element going on, with the snark and delightful curmugdeonliness. But our narrator is only in the background (for now, at least) and the story centers on rough-n-tumble Jocelyn Hook, Cap't Hook's abandoned daughter.
The general storyline is what you'd expect, only funny and more gory than I had anticipated. I'm not talking slasher film, here, but death and some of the less pleasant aspects of life are not covered over and I appreciate that because kids need to know. Plus, kids get a thrill from just that kind of thing. At least, I did...both when I was a kid and when I read this story last week.

It's a fun adventure tale that puts a somewhat rotten, though delightful, girl front and center. Unlike Pippi Longstocking or others of her ilk, Jocelyn is flawed. She makes mistakes. She's not wacky-perfect, she's human. It's hard not to want to wrap her up in a hug, though she'd shank you if you tried. She's got a good heart, some pirate's greed, and she's more concerned about what she wants to do than how she affects others. She's a kid who hasn't been successfully molded by society.

Much of the original cast shows up - Peter Pan and Tinkerbell along with a new set of Lost Boys. Mr. Smee. The ticking crocodile - but this story is cattywumpus enough that Peter is an afterthought, the crocodile is a huge menace, and Mr. Smee...ok, he's still Smee. Jocelyn is the anti-Wendy in this story and I love her for that because I have never liked Wendy. She pissed me off in the book, she pissed me off in the Disney movie, she just pisses me off all the time. But because there is no Wendy, no one caters to Peter except for his tribe of dimwits and for someone who has never enjoyed the original tale, I found this to be a great source of joy.

So why not five full stars?
Wellll...yeah, there's always one of these...it was Roger's fault.
I liked Roger in the beginning. I liked that he was a balance to Jocelyn's crazypants, I liked that he was thoughtful and industrious and smart. And I liked that just as Jocelyn was learning important lessons from him, albeit unintentionally, they were separated.
I didn't expect him to show up again in this book. I sort of thought Jocelyn was going to have her big adventure and then would realize that she can't, in fact, do everything her way on her own, that she does need others, and that would spur the second book (I already knew it was in the works so maybe that's why I pushed the storyline out so far...in my mind) to be about getting Roger back.
It doesn't work out that way, though, (well, I mean, it does, just not in the ways I'd expected) and Roger's part in Neverland didn't appeal to me.

It's a minor thing, though, a small part. It's not worth fretting over and I think I might be the only one on the planet who had that irkiness.

All in all, this is a super fun book and I hope fourth-graders the country over read it and laugh and then go outside and have adventures.

Profile Image for Mel (Daily Prophecy).
1,075 reviews465 followers
November 24, 2014

ADORABLE. Delightful. Magnificent. Those are three words that pop up in my head when I think about this book. I want to thank Debby and Daph for the book club meeting, because it pushed me to buy this book despite my book buying ban. This was exactly what I needed.

Jocelyn’s grandfather sends her away to school to make sure she turns into a fine young lady. It doesn’t work out. Jocelyn has always wanted to be a pirate like her feared father Captain Hook. When her best friend Roger is send away from school and a mysterious letter from her father arrives, Jocelyn sets sail to Neverland. She must avenge her father’s dead.

"If Ambrose wanted a display of manners, she would give him one. For the next quarter of an hour the girl laughed too loudly, slurped her soup, dribbled gravy in her lap and used her sleeve instead of a napkin."

You cannot stop yourself from falling in love with Jocelyn. This girl is feisty! She is a true rebel and she doesn’t let anyone stop her from becoming the person she wants to be: a pirate. Jocelyn is also a clever and brave girl. You have to admire her confidence and she often made me laugh with her actions. You better not try to tell her what to do, because she will do the exact opposite. I also need to talk about Roger and I have to agree with Debby: I SHIP THEM. Roger is exactly the kind of boy Jocelyn needs. He seeks adventure and he supports her without question. The first time they meet he immediately accepts her role as Captain and they were the cutest thing ever. But I’m happy that they have a friendship for now, it made the story much more realistic.

There are also a couple of other adorable characters. There is Smee, who is a little messed up after losing his Captain and the crazy crew who made me laugh out loud. It was fun to see how they react on Jocelyn and how there is no one questioning her because she is a girl. This book speaks of so much girl-power! Especially in the scenes were Jocelyn meets Peter Pan, who is insufferable. This book also features one of my favorite things: beautiful illustrations.

The next thing that amused me was the sarcastic voice from the storyteller. I think this way to tell Jocelyn’s story would be perfect to read as bed-time story for your kids – and it makes the story feel more grown-up and suited for adults as well. I don’t listen to audiobooks, but this would be great with a good voice actor! I image Tom Hiddleston reading this with his Loki-sass.

"For example, I once read a book about getting rid of unwanted pests. I felt that I was quite the expert, and yet here you sit."

I can’t wait to return to Neverland and see more of the adventures from Jocelyn, Roger and her unique crew!
Profile Image for Jen Malone.
Author 16 books517 followers
May 8, 2014
Hooks Revenge tells the story of Jocelyn Hook, daughter of Captain Hook- yes, THAT Captain Hook- who is a not-so-evil-hearted chip off the old block. She is the kind of girl who keeps spiders in her pocket, eschews hair brushes and corsets, and gobbles up adventure novels by the dozen. When a letter from her estranged father arrives, Jocelyn jumps at the chance to ditch finishing school and head "second to the right, straight on til morning." (although her method of transport is a bit more... unusual.)

Shiver me timbers- I'm perfectly in love with the narrator of this book. He's the least cuddly person ever, but I kind of want him to live in my pocket. Fans of Caroline Carlson's Magic Marks the Spot will adore this story of Jocelyn's revenge on one particular tick-tocking crocodile. From British finishing school to the Neverland's high seas (with appearances by Tiger Lily, the Lost Boys, and Peter himself), this is dryly hilarious throughout and still manages to impart an empowering message very much in line with J.M. Barrie's about the things we lose when we grow up... and the ways we can reclaim them.
Profile Image for Catherine Doyle.
Author 14 books1,524 followers
February 28, 2015
I feel like I don't get to use the word 'Swashbuckling' half enough in real life, which is one of the main reasons I wanted to read this book. Well, that and it looked amazing, which it was, as it turns out.

Jocelyn is the daughter of Captain Hook, but she's not exactly living the high-seas lifestyle - instead she's stuck in a boarding school with a bunch of snooty girls and dreaming of life as a pirate. Then, one day, a message reaches her - her father has been killed by a crocodile, and she is expected to avenge his death! Perfecto! Just what she's been waiting for (well, apart from the murder bit), but still, she gets her chance to go to Neverland and become the fearsome pirate she was born to be.

Featuring Neverland favourites like Peter Pan, Tinkerbell, Tiger Lily, Smee, The Lost Boys and those creepy mermaids who are somehow still oddly enviable, Hook's Daughter, is a rip-roaring adventure with an empowering message. It's about believing in yourself, staying loyal to those you love and standing up for what you think is right.

Also: Bonus points for the HIGH-larious narrator, who is possibly the rudest, yet funniest, pirate I have ever encountered. And you would be surprised by how many pirates I know.
Profile Image for Rachel Gunter.
279 reviews101 followers
April 30, 2015
Rating - 3.5

This is the second book I've read this month set in Neverland, but they were both really different so it didn't get repetitive. I loved the storyline of Hook having a daughter, and her avenging him by going after the crocodile. I would have liked to see Peter Pan, Tinkerbell, and Tiger Lily a bit more, but it was still enjoyable. I'll definitely read the sequel when it comes out.
Profile Image for Kate Ormand.
Author 8 books279 followers
July 18, 2016
Heidi Schulz puts a fun spin on one of the most magical and wondrous fictional lands. I’m a sucker for villains. I really am. So it immediately grabbed my interested at the mention of Captain James Hook! And I loved learning more about him alongside his daughter, Jocelyn, on her quest for revenge.

I liked Jocelyn from the minute she burst on to the page, setting paper boats on fire, swinging a wooden sword, and scouting for enemy ships on the horizon. She’s a dreamer, and an absolute delight. Unfortunately, her grandfather doesn’t think her behaviour is acceptable for a young lady and he sends her off to finishing school. Jocelyn hopes for adventure, she’s aware of her father’s reputation and she wants in. But then she receives word of Captain Hook’s toothy end, and she finally gets her wish – though perhaps not quite like she imagined. Jocelyn sets out to fulfil Hook’s last request – that she defeat the crocodile and avenge his death. And so her adventure begins…

Readers will explore Neverland like never before as Jocelyn sets sail with a loyal Smee and a crew of peculiar pirates. Reconnecting with some story favourites, like Tinker Bell, Tiger Lily and, of course, Peter Pan, was a real treat. Told by a narrator, with terrific humour and rich description, it reminded me of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events (one of my all-time favourite series!). This was such a fun adventure, sweet at times, laugh-out-loud funny at others, and an utterly genius idea for a story. I enjoyed it immensely. Now the wait begins for book two. Tick-tock…
Profile Image for Willow Anne.
404 reviews81 followers
April 24, 2022
I remembered basically nothing about this book from the first time I read it, except for a very bare bones plot that the synopsis gave more details for. So even though this was a reread, it felt more like a first read. Although I remembered a few things here and there as I read, most of it felt new, and I liked that!

This is just such a fun adventure story, and it's such an easy read too. It feels like I'm just having fun while reading it and I love that about it. It's got Neverland with all its pirates, mermaids, fairies, lost boys, tick-tock croc, cannibals, and more! It's a swashbuckling tale of high adventure and friendship that I absolutely adore.

My only complaint is about Peter Pan, because I LOVE him in the movie, but here he was portrayed as basically just an annoying little kid with no redeeming qualities. I'm still holding out hope for redemption in book 2 though. And also we did get Roger and Meriwether, both of whom I loved (I like Roger best though❤️), so that made up for it a little bit.

Also I don't think I've read the next book before, so I'm in for a surprise!
Profile Image for Emmie Mears.
Author 20 books137 followers
July 19, 2014
I felt like a glutton after finishing this book. I'm on deadline and recovering from bronchitis, and somehow this was exactly the best thing for me to read, exactly now, exactly here.

This book is, front to back, a complete and utter delight. I don't read much YA or middle grade at all, but this is a book I wish I could go back in time and hand to a young Emmie, who DESPERATELY wanted a hero like Jocelyn to look up to and emulate. As a child who was always cutting her own hair and looking for the absolute best patches of mud, I got to be a kid again reading this book.

Schulz's no-nonsense narrator and action-packed plot make this the perfect adventure novel for any kid who would rather go play with swords and books and tree climbing than sit still and learn manners.

What a wonderful romp this book is.

(Though I must admit that I wholeheartedly disagree with the narrator's stance on cats.)
Profile Image for Skip.
3,249 reviews393 followers
February 9, 2015
Jocelyn Hook is a tomboy, who dreams of following her famous pirate father, Captain James Hook. But, she is sent to a prissy girls school to learn manners, but her behavior and consorting with a young orphan boy gets her expelled. Meanwhile, a letter arrives from her father asking her to slaughter Neverland's famous crocodile, who has killed him so she heads off to adventure. The rag tag group of pirates are funny as are the Lost Boys, but I wanted to punch the narrator repeatedly. So obnoxious.
Profile Image for Debby.
583 reviews540 followers
April 18, 2021
5 freaking amazing stars

I don't even think I can recall the last time that I've been so utterly freaking delighted about a book - that I loved every minute of it and happily put it on my "everything-i-wanted" shelf on Goodreads. Hook's Revenge, Heidi Schulz's amazing middle grade debut, completely swept me off my feet. I'm head over heels for a book... and a middle grade book at that. You know what, don't even read my review, I can't do this book justice - just go buy this book right now.

...What? You're still here? *sigh* Guess I'll write a review after all then.

And that, my friends, is an example of the delightful narration you'll encounter in Hook's Revenge. In a tone very similar to Lemony Snicket's in his Series of Unfortunate Events, the narrator of Hook's Revenge is an older guy who is wonderfully snarky and sadistic, and he bemoans the effort of having to tell this story. From page one, I was bursting with laughter. His sarcastic and witty tone is just absolutely perfect, and it absorbed me into the story right away. Seriously. Sheer hilarity. I don't know if I have ever laughed out loud so much with one book. It was exactly what I needed.

I expect that you'd like to know about the most famous of all pirates, Captain James Hook. As I am the world's foremost expert on him, naturally you turned to me. Children come to me all the time, begging to hear what I know. I graciously seat them in a circle around me, lean in, and whisper, "Not a chance."

I don't like children all that much.
Hook's Revenge by Heidi Schulz (ARC)

There is no use putting it off any longer; it is time to tell what I know, lest the girl's story die with me. Settle in, I suppose. Do be sure not to touch anything, and for heaven's sake, please don't breathe so loudly. If you're quite comfortable, I'll pour myself a little drink and begin. If you're not comfortable, I'll begin anyway. Your comfort is of little concern to me.
Hook's Revenge by Heidi Schulz (ARC)

I'm not going to spam you with quotes - though I would well be able to, because I went crazy with post-its for this book, marking at least 30 passages that were either completely hilarious, top-notch witty or extremely sweet. But the writing is absolutely brilliant - you can trust me on that.

Now, Hook's Revenge is an extension to the story of Peter Pan. Our main character is Jocelyn, the daughter of Captain Hook. She is absolutely fierce. I loved her immediately. She's 12 years old at the start of the story, and she idolizes her father. She wants nothing more than to become a pirate and go on pillaging adventures with him. Unfortunately, she's stuck on the mainland with her grandfather, who decides to send her to finishing school so that she might start acting a little more ladylike. This book is bursting with girl power and destroys gender stereotypes, which makes me love it SO MUCH MORE.

Acting ladylike is Jocelyn's worst nightmare, pretty much. Having to dress nicely in clean clothes? Having to walk calmly? Speak politely? Sing traditional songs instead of sea shanties? Sleep in a room that is ENTIRELY pink? EW. All she wants to do is run around and go on adventures, and I loved that about her so much. She's brave, resourceful, and all-around inspiring. She's also supremely snarky - she's not taking shit from ANYBODY. ("I blame myself, really." "I blame you too. So we are agreed," Jocelyn replied.) She has a bit of a reckless streak in her, but that makes her so much more adorable. She gets bullied by some of the prim prissy little girls at the finishing school, so she gets revenge on them in the most badass ways. Oh, what? You don't want a snake in your pocket? Too bad.

Oh, by the way, are you one of those people who is like, "Ehh, I don't think I could ever ship two characters in a middle grade book,"? Read this. And try not to ship Jocelyn and Roger because OH MY GOD THEY ARE SHEER PERFECTION. Roger is the cook's helper and undergardener at the finishing school, and the two quickly become friends due to a shared love of adventure and snarky sense of humor. Banter banter banter ensues. I was flailing. It was just too awesome. Are they too young and will this probably never happen? I don't care.

He put his sword down and sat on the floor near Jocelyn, leaning against the couch. "Don't die," he said. "What fun would that be? For me, I mean."

She reached over and gave him a little shove. "This is serious."

"Oh yes. Serious. I can tell." He arranged his face into mock gravity. "Do you dance?"
Hook's Revenge by Heidi Schulz (ARC)

Right, but um, the story. So after a while at finishing school, Jocelyn finally gets a letter from her father, Captain Hook. Unfortunately, this means he's died, and he's left her with the task to avenge him. Soon, she's off to Neverland to hunt down the crocodile. It's super fun and engaging - and again, I was giggling like mad the whole way through. She puts together a crew of wannabe pirates and tries to live up to her father's name while battling the stigma that "she's just a little girl so she can't do anything". Again: girl power. She even meets Peter Pan who's like the greatest freaking douchebag, immediately assuming he needs to rescue her and refusing to believe she can do anything. Wow, was he always such a sexist asshole? PROVE HIM WRONG, JOCELYN.

Fuck you dude. But don't worry, Jocelyn doesn't tolerate this bullshit because she's too damn awesome.

Anyway, she has more adventures, encountering the mermaids, the crocodile, the lost boys, the fairies, etc etc which all just makes this such a richly detailed world - fitting with what we know of Peter Pan perfectly. The end of the book also adds in a heartfelt message about family and some of the insecurities that Jocelyn struggles with, which really brought the feels for me. There are so many good messages that readers can pull out of this book, so I'm going to be recommending it like crazy. I enjoyed every single second of it and never wanted to put the book down. Hook's Revenge is everything. I just want moooooore.

Summing Up:

When I picked this book up at BEA, I had no idea that I would be falling head over heels for it. Hook's Revenge is a brilliantly written debut full of fun adventures, a great cast of characters, utter hilarity, and tons and tons of girl power. It was everything I wanted. Everything. This would easily appeal to middle grade readers, reluctant readers, and young adult readers looking to branch out. With its beautiful cover and wonderful illustrations, I'll be adding a finished copy to my shelves super soon and desperately awaiting the sequel.

GIF it to me straight!

Recommended To:

EVERYONEEEEE - fans of Lemony Snicket and Rick Riordan in particular.

*ARC obtained at Book Expo America in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the contents of the review.
Profile Image for Brenda.
832 reviews35 followers
September 22, 2014
Originally published at http://www.logcabinlibrary.blogspot.com/

I absolutely adored Hooks Revenge. It is a very sweet story about a girl that longs for her mother, father and a little adventure in her life. I loved Jocelyn's seemingly look of "wide-eyed innocence," while at the same time she is brandishing swords, carrying spiders in her pocket, and coming to the dinner table with "twigs in her unruly dark curls, muddy knees, and grass stains on the seat of her pants." Jocelyn was such an endearing character she speaks to you with her willfulness and tomboyish ways. She is also very resourceful when put in a bind. Yet, there was also this softer side to Jocelyn, that was filled with self doubts and a desire to live up to the Hook family name. Jocelyn seemed to struggle over wanting to do what she felt her father expected of her, but also not wanting to fail. Jocelyn really grew throughout the story, she became more confident in herself and started to see what really mattered to her.

While at the finishing school Jocelyn meets Roger. It's like kismet, they both want to be pirates, have adventures, and they spend time together reading books and looking at maps. Roger is the one who helps Jocelyn figure out how to fit in with the expectations at her school by saying "the way I see it is this: When it comes to your lessons. Miss Eliza pipes and you have to dance - but who is to say you can't choose your own steps?" They make for a great team and their friendship shines throughout the story. Plus, the bantering they share is quite humorous.

Schulz defiantly plays homage to Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie in Hooks Revenge. There are plenty of mermaids, Peter Pan, fairies, pirates, and even the dreaded crocodile with his tick-toking clock. But for me, it's the wonderful voice of the unknown narrator who provides the laugh out loud dialogue. There is something comforting in that voice that I just can't put my finger on. Don't get me wrong though, the narrator is kind of cantankerous too, but oh so funny, like this line: "There is no use putting it off any longer; it is time to tell what I know, lest the girl's story die with me. Settle in, I suppose. Do be sure not to touch anything, and for heaven's sake, please don't breathe so loudly. If you're comfortable, I'll pour myself a little drink and begin. If you are not comfortable, I'll begin anyway. Your comfort is of little concern to me." Hook's Revenge is a wonderful story that will easily appeal to boys or girls who are looking for swashbuckling pirates and a little adventure of their own.

Many thanks to the publisher Disney Hyperion, as well as Goodreads for this first reads giveaway.
Profile Image for Mehsi.
11.6k reviews360 followers
February 13, 2016
4.5 stars.

This book was terrific. I finally have a new kick-ass heroine to add to my list! Jocelyn is just a wonderful character. While she is a total tomboy, she also doesn't mind girly things at times.

The book starts off with an introduction and takes place at Jocelyn's grandfather's place, then in the second part of the book we are at a boarding school/finishing school and lastly we are finally in Neverland!

Jocelyn is totally awesome, I really like it when girls kick some ass, and she is really doing that in this book. But, she is also showing her human side by being afraid, by worrying, by wondering about things. I really loved this and Jocelyn was quite a diverse character.
I loved how she took her heritage and just went to do it. Though she didn't expect all the problems she would encounter.

Problems like several very annoying boys (Lost Boys + Peter Pan), a crocodile that is just a bit too much too handle, cannibals, bad pirates (yes, you also have really bad pirates) and several other things.

It was delightful that most of this book took place in Neverland and how everything felt like it came from the original book. A lot of the things that were mentioned brought me back on a nostalgia trip. Fairy villages, Tiger Lily's village, Lost Boys, Pirates. Of course Peter Pan, just brought me on a nostalgia rage party. Seriously, I never really did like him much. I hated his attitude, how he treated girls/woman (And no I am not a feminist, I just don't like it when boys treat girls like shit), I disliked his lack of responsibility and there are several other instances. I was already glad we barely saw much of Tinkerhell (not a misspelling, this is one of my many names for her).

I do wish we had seen some more of Captain Hook, he is one of my favourite villains. Luckily we still get enough references and also some backstory about him!

The only thing that could make this book more awesome (yes, it is already awesome, but it can always become more awesome), would be if there were illustrations. Now the only illustrations we get are at the chapter beginnings.

I would highly recommend this book to everyone who is looking for a new book about Pirates, Kick-ass girls and a nostalgia trip back to Neverland.

Review first posted at http://twirlingbookprincess.com/
Profile Image for Louise Galveston.
Author 2 books15 followers
March 29, 2014
I'd been looking forward to reading Hook's Revenge from the first time I'd heard of it, and I was certainly not disappointed. In fact, this witty saga about the adventures of Jocelyn Hook (yes, HIS daughter) was every bit as smart and hilarious as I'd expected. What I didn't expect was to shed a few tears over the fate of the heroine, and to be treated to so much beautiful language and description.

This is a lot more than a mere "hardy har har" pirate comedy. This is rich--a real treasure. Although the traditional Peter Pan cast does make appearances (and lovable Smee is a wonderful supporting character), this is truly Jocelyn's tale. I highly recommend this rollicking (and at times very touching) read. In a word: EPIC.
Profile Image for Crystal | decorating.reader.
386 reviews190 followers
June 17, 2015
COMPLETELY in love with this book!! It was so cute and SO much fun. I am such a fan of anything to do with Peter Pan and Hook stories and this one did not disappoint! It had a lot of the original characters plus a whole crew of new ones! We even got new fairies!! Can not wait to dive into The Pirate Code!!
Profile Image for Barb Middleton.
1,644 reviews122 followers
March 10, 2015
Heidi Schulz mirrors J.M. Barrie's, "Peter Pan," using a narrator that interrupts the story and gives adult-like comments as a satire on society's views. However, Barrie's narrator satires parenthood, keeping up appearances, and wanting to be special, (to name a few), while Schulz's narrator is light in tone and pokes fun at etiquette, manners, and finishing schools. Peter Pan is a boy that lives in childhood for eternity. Peter staring through the glass window of the nursery listening to Mrs. Darling tell bedtime stories to her children is a symbol of Barrie's yearning for a romantic or simplistic childhood that doesn't really exist. Heidi Schulz uses Jocelyn Hook as the protagonist who wants to grow up and does throughout the story. There is nothing romantic about her characters. While her plot takes elements from Barrie's classic structure she tries to modernize the politically incorrect parts and create her own piece. It's an ambitious task. She succeeds for the most part in a very clever book.

Captain Hook's daughter Jocelyn is being raised by her grandparents. She's wild and has no manners turning the household into chaos. She's sent to a boarding school where she is rejected and singled out by the head mistress. Unhappy, she makes a friend with a boy her age, Roger, who works in the kitchen. Roger is unfairly fired because the head mistress thinks he and Jocelyn are interested in each other romantically. On the same day that he leaves, Jocelyn receives a posthumous note from her father, Captain Hook, asking her to avenge his death by killing the monstrous crocodile that ate him. She sets off to Neverland and hires an inept pirate crew that is similar to "Peter Pan"; yet, this updated version takes out most of the stereotypes, racism, and sexism while creating characters that do want to grow up. Humor is littered throughout that will have you singing yo-ho and yapping like a pirate.

Barrie portrays Wendy, Tiger Lily, and Tinkerbell as damsels-in-distress that are dependent on Peter to save them. The jealous interactions between the female characters result from them seeing their importance, self-worth, and identities through Peter not within themselves. Wendy plays the stereotyped housewife that won't go on the Lost Boys adventures and is content to feed them, give them medicine, and read them stories. Heidi Schulz presents the exact opposite. Jocelyn is the author of her own adventures and is in the middle of the action. She saves Roger and is the hero of her own story. She is not larger than life at the finishing school, but is in the imaginative world of Neverland. She's not always that likable, but she's a strong person and willing to face her fears of being abandoned, making friends, and failing her father. Neverland not only represents Jocelyn being imaginative, it shows her learning to believe in herself and have the confidence to grow up and be the captain of her own adventures.

The plot takes certain elements from the Peter Pan series but mostly when Jocelyn goes to Neverland. The first part shows Jocelyn feeling trapped in school and wanting adventures. This is the school girl story with the misfit girl being bullied. This is the author's creation that has references to "Peter Pan," such as Roger, jolly chap, who is named after Hook's ship "The Jolly Roger" and the skull and bones pirate flag. Or there is maidservant Gerta that sounds like she'd make a good pirate and the school girl, Nanette, that sounds a bit like Nana the nurse dog in the original. Jocelyn and Peter can't wait to explore the world and plan on having great adventures. They are excited to grow up. It isn't until an enormous raven named, Edgar, flies Jocelyn to Neverland that nods to the classics are seen from mermaids to natives.

When Jocelyn ends up being taken to Neverland, the author has the plot follow elements of Barrie's books although it is completely her own adventure and explores a character doing the opposite of Peter Pan. The book gets more silly here and pokes fun at the classic. Her pirate crew is the 16th best on the island and they pretend that they've lost limbs in a battle. One-armed Jack has two perfectly good arms but pretends he lost the other in an epic fight with enemies on a rival pirate ship. He's so thrilled when the crocodile actually bites it off it takes the violence out of the scene. One-armed Jack yells in joy as his arm disappears that he doesn't have to pretend anymore and can brag all he wants. It made me think of Mr. Darling in Barrie's story who wants to be important and is thrilled when he gets media attention for sleeping in the dog's house as a vigil after he believes Wendy and his two sons have been kidnapped by villains.

Then there is the whole mother business. In Barrie's book, Peter and the Lost Boys want a mother. Captain Hook and his pirates kidnap Wendy because they want a mother. When Jocelyn screams at her crew to pay attention, they respond, "We're sorry, Mother." "Mother? Mother! Which of you dogs dares to call me mother?" She didn't wait for a reply. "I am not your mother. I am your captain, and you would be wise to address me as such." In "Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens," Peter gets one wish from the fairy, Queen Mab, and he wishes to see his mother. At the climax, Jocelyn does the same thing but her experience is the opposite of Peters. While Peter's mother has forgotten him, Jocelyn's mother gives wise advice that allows Jocelyn to grow up.

The Cannibals are stereotyped with their choppy English language and desire to be English. There is a bit of colonialism in that the natives want to meet royalty. In an ironic twist Jocelyn teaches them manners and table etiquette. The author pokes fun at the absurdness of how complex eating is for royalty. Critics have cited the cultural insensitivity of Peter Pan toward Natives that are presented as savages. Schulz presents them as idiots as well and while its funny, the humor is at the expense of the indigenous people. It is interesting to examine classic and modern literature as it relates to current cultures. It is easy to see why Huck Finn, for instance, is controversial in its portrayal of African Americans. I found the portrayal of Joe offensive at the end but can see how Twain was imitating the minstrel shows that were acceptable at that time. Here, Barrie is representing commonly held conventions such as presenting Natives as savages or wimpy Victorian women with specific motherly roles in society. I don't like it, but find it interesting from a historical perspective. What I don't like about Schulz's portrayal of the Natives is her poking fun at languages and how people speak. She's actually showing Jocelyn being a dip by shouting at the Natives - a common and annoying trait people do when someone doesn't understand a foreigner attempting to communicate in the native language. What I don't like is making fun of people that speak broken English. Of course, most people laugh at my Chinese (I live in Taiwan) because it is so bad so I know I'm overly sensitive to this. Take it for what it is worth.

Roger has forgotten who he is in Neverland. He can't remember Jocelyn and is stuck in childhood. In the real book Peter Pan wants a kiss from Wendy but never really understands what it is. Schulz uses the same feature in her book except by the end Roger and Jocelyn know exactly what a kiss means and seem to be okay with that. The two want to grow up and move on. They don't want to be stuck like hamsters on an endless wheel-of-childhood.

Peter Pan makes an appearance in this book and is a selfish braggart just like in the original. He takes credit for Jocelyn's actions and is fearlessly cocky. He likes to put himself in danger rather than take the easy way out which is also the same as he was in "Peter Pan." He fights Captain Krueger's pirate crew by joining Jocelyn's crew, but then decides to battle Jocelyn's crew. He isn't going to fight her crew in the same way. That would be too easy. Instead he decides to have the Lost Boys find poison apples to kill them. Peter is playacting one of the stories he's been told called, "Snow White." He just can't separate stories from his reality. Schulz does a terrific job with melding the classic with her own original ideas. Weigh anchor with this fun tale and hit the seas.
Profile Image for Jason.
1,181 reviews107 followers
December 10, 2018
If this was a bit shorter then this would have got a higher rating, it is a nice idea for a book but the middle of the story, the coming of age part, drags, so much so that we got distracted and read another book for a break.

It is an interesting story, Captain Hook had a child, she currently goes to a boring school where girls learn to be proper, unfortunately she has too much pirate blood in her to fit in. Eventually she ends up in Neverland she the reader gets to meet new characters and visit areas that were not visited in the original story, these were fun, I don't know if they were part of the original island or made up by this author but they worked well.

Another good part of the writing was the narrator, an old grumpy pirate telling the life story of the young Hook, he constantly hurls abuse at the reader which always gave us a good laugh.
Profile Image for Michele Benson.
829 reviews
August 5, 2017
I thought this book was extremely witty and I really enjoyed the descriptive language. "A miasma of overripe fish, gun smoke and unwashed bodies hung in the briny air....For the first time in her life, Jocelyn felt truly at home." This is exactly the kind of book I would have enjoyed reading to my daughter when she was younger. I am looking forward to the next Bee Book.
Profile Image for Celeste_pewter.
593 reviews147 followers
October 7, 2014
Who doesn't love a spunky protagonist with a (in)famous father, who's determined to escape the confines of polite society and fulfill her destiny as a famous pirate?

Because that's exactly what you're going to get with Heidi Schulz's incredibly fun debut novel, Hook's Revenge.

Schulz introduces readers to Jocelyn, the daughter (a.k.a. "female offspring") of fiercely renowned pirate Captain James Hook. She's a feisty girl who doesn't fit into the mold of polite society, and spends more time trying to become a pirate, than she does thinking about her lessons at her unimaginative finishing school.

But on her birthday, Jocelyn receives a letter from her father asking her to avenge his untimely death at the hands of a familiar crocodile. Before she knows it, Jocelyn's swept off to Neverland to train a motley crew of novice pirates and figure out just how she can step into Captain Hook's famous red coat…

Narrated through the voice of a cranky older pirate who really has better things to do than this, Schulz does a wonderful job of showing just how one young girl can remain true to her convictions, despite a community of people trying to convince her otherwise.

Despite well-meaning interference from her family and school, Jocelyn never doubts that she is destined for big, swashbuckling pirate adventures, just like her father. There is a certain quiet strength to Jocelyn's convictions, which readers will undoubtedly admire and want to emulate in their own lives.

This is especially true when Jocelyn reaches Neverland, and realizes that just being a Hook won't always get her what she needs. She has to adapt to a world that doesn't judge her fairly because she's a child and female - something she haughtily denounces when asked to be a Mother - and she skillfully uses her wits and intelligence to learn from her mistakes and adapts.

Readers will especially appreciate Jocelyn's ingenious ways of using all of the dreaded etiquette lessons she endured in school to further her journey, and how our narrator (begrudgingly) admits that this is something that readers could all stand to learn, when working on their own lessons.

Outside of Jocelyn's journey, Schulz also poses some nice, thoughtful questions on friendship and family. Interweaving some ideas from the original J.M. Barrie tale, Schulz asks readers to question just what makes up of a family - whether it's blood relatives or a family of friends - and how it's possibly to preserve that family, even in the face of change.

While Hook's Revenge was the perfect length at 273+ pages, I could have easily another 300 pages of Jocelyn's journey. Fortunately for me, I don't have long to wait - Schulz has a sequel coming out in 2015.

Of special note: Educators and parents will likely appreciate how Schulz handles the concept of losing a parent and/or family member throughout the book. There's a sensitivity and recognition of the fact that sometimes, a young girl like Jocelyn will want her mother, regardless of how brave they may be.

However, it's also good to remember the good times with that family member, and draw strength upon that, as you continue to move forward with your life. I have no doubt that this is a thoughtful idea that will facilitate much discussion between readers of all ages.


Final verdict:

This is one of those books where you'll finish it, and think: "Dang it. I might as well give up writing right now, since I'll never be that good."

And immediately follow up that thought with: "…Wait. When does the next book come out? Because I need it now. Who do I need to bribe? Anyone?"

Heidi Schulz proves that it's absolutely possible to add a new spin to an old tale and give that spin so much zest and charm, you can't fault readers if they walk away thinking that the Hook mythos has all originated from Schulz's delightfully creative mind.

I absolutely believe that readers will fall for Jocelyn's spunk and wit, while also appreciating the thoughtful questions that Schulz poses on personal courage, the importance of friendship and living up to a family legacy. Jocelyn begins the book as James Hook's child, but comes into her own as James's legacy by the end of the novel.

I recommend this book for fans of all MG readers, especially for fans of Lemony Snicket. Schulz writes in an engaging, hilarious voice that is reminiscent of Snicket, and will undoubtedly delight fans of both.
Profile Image for Gina (My Precious Blog).
471 reviews21 followers
September 24, 2014
Most everyone is familiar with the story of Peter Pan and the nefarious Captain Hook, but I don't think many know Captain Hook had a daughter. Hook's Revenge focuses on the story of Hook's only child, a spirited young gal named Jocelyn Hook. When the story opens, we find the youngster raising the roof at her grandfather's house, where Jocelyn is cared for since a pirates life is no life for a little girl. She's a total tomboy and her grandfather fears she will never be able to find a suitor unless someone is able to put an end to her shenanigans. So he ships her off to a notorious finishing school. Not long after Jocelyn's arrival she receives a letter from her father stating he has met an untimely death at the teeth of an evil beast, a crocodile. He tells her as his only heir he has nothing really to give her except for a task to avenge his death and kill the croc. Of course, Jocelyn must rise to the challenge and a crazy misadventure begins. Hook's Revenge has a many different settings, at first a boarding school and then the oceans and after that the Netherlands. The story is told from a cantankerous omniscient narrator who is sarcastic and will keep readers laughing. Pacing is moderate and remains steady throughout the book. Jocelyn is a determined girl. She possess spunk, vigor and wits. In the beginning she really just lacks self confidence. I adored watching grow and change into a fierce heroine as the story progressed. Her crew are a jumble of misfits, each with his own quirk. For example we have a blind pirate who really can see, but covers both eyes with eye patches to give him the appearance of being site challenged. Jocelyn's best friend Roger, is present for the first third of the story. He's a kind hearted boy and immediately takes a liking to Jocelyn, even though she's a girl. This is a light entertaining story filled with hilarious misadventures. There are cannibals, fairies, mermaids and even mean girls. One of my favorite aspects of the story was the grumpy narrator. He has some pretty great lines. Another part to this story is its an inspirational read for young girls. It shows them if you believe in yourself, great things can happen. What a fantastic, powerful message. I really enjoyed how the story wrapped up. When I turned the last page I was left with a feeling of contentment. I learned all that I want to about how everything turned out. What was even more exciting is the author left room for a potential sequel. I'd recommend this story to both young readers and adult readers. There is definitely enough substance to this book to entertain both audiences. Its a clean read and I think it would be suitable to both boys and girls since there is quite a bit of adventure and action, especially near the end of the tale.
Profile Image for Frances Blackthorn.
Author 4 books76 followers
January 15, 2016
Original Blog Review: http://landamac.weebly.com/blog/revie...

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I received this book in exchange for an honest review !

Hook’s Daughter was quite a nice reading, I’m not going to say that I loved it because I didn’t, but I enjoyed it a lot… it is kind of a retelling of Peter Pan’s story, and even if I’m not the biggest fan of Peter Pan I can say that I liked this version of it !

I liked the way it was written, I liked the characters, I liked OVERALL the narrator… I really liked him, he was so funny and such an entertaining “character” that I really think that it is impossible not to like him.

Even if this book/story was written to be read by children I believe that anyone can read it, I’m not a child and I did read it… I think that everyone should read this kind of books once in a while because we all should remember what is like to be a kid, what is like to imagine other worlds…

So as I said before I’m not the biggest fan of Peter Pan or even of this book… BUT, once again, it was written to be read by children and I think that it is a really good book for them, it was quite entertaining, it was funny, it was a really fast reading… overall it was great, so I decided to give to it 4 starts, because that’s the score I think this book deserves.
Profile Image for Nikki.
Author 10 books166 followers
July 9, 2017
One of the most fun MG novels I've read!
Profile Image for Robin Herrera.
Author 6 books41 followers
February 17, 2015
What a book! I couldn't wait to read this book ever since I heard about it. With the premise of "Captain Hook's daughter, Jocelyn, journeys to the Neverland to exact revenge on the Crocodile who ate her father," how could you resist?

The humor was evident from the first opening lines. A wickedly funny narrator takes charge of this story, and I found myself laughing every time his passages came up. The other thing that was evident was the inventiveness and pure fun of Jocelyn's adventures, which reminded me of both Pippi Longstocking's and Hilary Westfield's. I contend that this is a great book to pair with The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates: Magic Marks the Spot, as both novels feature female protagonists who want to be pirates and who have to first suffer through finishing school. (And have uniquely voiced narratives!)

This book wasn't all laughs, though. I was on the verge of tears towards the end. I won't say anything else because of spoilers, but Jocelyn's interactions with certain dead people really got to me.

Now you probably think this book is about a bunch of ghosts. :)
13 reviews1 follower
June 12, 2014
I was lucky enough to get Hook’s Revenge as an ARC from BookCon. The actual book comes out on September 16, 2014. It is Heidi Schulz’s debut novel.

This story is about Captain Hook. Not the Captain Hook from Peter Pan. This story is about Captain Hook’s daughter, Jocelyn, and how she escaped from finishing school and battled the dreaded beast that killed her father, The Neverland’s Crocodile. This is cool because I always wanted to know what happened after Peter Pan defeated Captain Hook. By the way, Peter is a real jerk in the book.

I enjoyed this book a lot. It was funny, interesting, and captivating. When I finished the book, I wanted the sequel to be out already! It was full of nonstop laughter, and at certain parts, a little bit of sadness as well.

I rate this book 9 out of 10 stars. The one complaint I have is that I didn’t see enough of Roger, Jocelyn’s best friend. Roger is my favorite character because he is adventurous, just like Jocelyn, but I like his personality even more. Good luck with the book launch, Heidi!
Profile Image for Gaby.
483 reviews310 followers
November 17, 2014
Love this adventure so very much. Longer review to come!
Profile Image for Jen (Pop! Goes The Reader).
109 reviews671 followers
September 18, 2014
Did you find this review helpful? Find more of my reviews at Pop! Goes The Reader!

“There have always been pirates. Why, even as far back as Eve, on the day she was considering whether or not to eat that apple, a pirate was most certainly planning to sail in and take it from her.”

If there’s one thing that twelve-year-old Jocelyn Hook has always dreamt of becoming, it’s a pirate. It does run in her blood, after all. Although she has never met him, Jocelyn’s father is none other than the infamous and bloodthirsty Captain James Hook, a macabre legacy that she takes no end of delight in recounting to others at every available opportunity. For a young girl in Georgian England, however, the pirate’s life is anything but easy (or accessible). After singing one too many bawdy sea shanties and scaring away one too many governesses, her grandfather has had enough and sends Jocelyn to Miss Eliza Crumb-Biddlecomb’s Finishing School For Young Ladies, an institution filled with students more machiavellian and dangerous than even the fiercest buccaneer. Drowning in a world of corsets, curtsies and an endless string of lessons on proper, ‘ladylike’ behaviour aimed at a girl with an interest in being anything but, Jocelyn chafes against the rigid restrictions placed against her and dreams of being swept away to a life of adventure and daring with only the sea to guide her. So, when a letter suddenly arrives informing her of Captain Hook’s untimely death at the hands (or should I say jaws?) of the Neverland Crocodile, it appears as though Jocelyn’s ship has finally, and quite literally, come in. Now, with the help of the ever-faithful Smee and a motley crew of pirates with little experience but no end of imagination, Jocelyn must travel to Neverland, avenge her father’s death, and save her best friend Roger from the clutches of the Lost Boys and that pesky Peter Pan. A pirate’s work is never done.

“I expect that you’d like to know about the most famous of all pirates, Captain James Hook. As I am the world’s foremost expert on him, naturally you turned to me. Children come to me all the time, begging to hear what I know. I graciously seat them in a circle around me, lean in, and whisper, “Not a chance.”
I don’t like children all that much.”

Arrr! Shiver me timbers! Avast, me hearties, and feast ye spyglass on this swashbuckling adventure worth its weight in gold doubloons. Okay. I’ll save the pirate lingo for International Talk Like A Pirate Day, however sorely I‘m tempted to write the entire review this way. Such is the power of Schulz’s work, however, that you can’t help but be swept away into the exciting, imaginative world that the author has created. Perfect for even the most skeptical landlubber, Hook’s Revenge is a magical re-telling filled with adventure, wit, and a great deal of heart that breathes new life into a beloved classic and, much like the original story on which it is based, promises to charm, delight, and entertain generations of readers for many years to come.

“Jocelyn also made great strides with her mastery of French. Miss Eliza was most certainly pleased, though I imagine she would have preferred Jocelyn memorize phrases such as Mais oui, J’ai en effet trouvé le Camembert délicieux (“Why yes, I did find the Camembert delicious”) instead of Pardonnez-moi, mais il semble que j’ai coincé ma fourchette á poisson dans votre oeil (“Pardon me, but it seems that I have lodged my fish fork in your eye”). Still, it could not be denied that progress was being made.

Twelve-year-old Jocelyn Hook is the protagonist I always dreamt of encountering as a child. Quiet, tidy, orderly and rule abiding, I loved nothing more than to live secondhand through the rambunctious, rebellious lives of the characters I read about, never quite able to draw up the courage to act as they did. Much to my surprise and delight, as a twenty-six-year-old woman I suddenly found myself experiencing the same sort of vicarious thrill again as I read about Jocelyn’s adventures. Smart, stubborn, headstrong and unafraid of a challenge, Jocelyn is everything I continue to wish I could be, even as an adult. I was proud to watch as Jocelyn faced her fears, detractors and naysayers and followed not the path determined for her, but rather forged by her own hand in an admirable display of wit, bravery and confidence. Jocelyn challenges traditional gender and societal norms of the period at every turn, unafraid to be different in a society that would prefer she be anything but. And I wouldn’t have her any other way. This, ladies and gentlemen, is a true heroine, in every possible sense, interpretation and definition of the word.

“Next, what is the purpose of your visit? Plunder? Murder? Revenge?”
Jocelyn glared at the man. “Principally revenge, though I am keeping my options open.”
“Have you anything to declare?”
“Yes. I declare these asinine questions to be a waste of time.”

As in the case of any re-telling, the author is faced with the unenviable task of making beloved, familiar characters her own and imagining them in an entirely new way. Thankfully, Heidi Schulz has proven herself to be more than up to this task. A number of familiar faces make appearances in this story including (but not limited to) Captain Hook, Smee, Tinkerbell and the Lost Boys. With a deft hand and a sharp eye for detail, Schulz adds new depth to these now-recognizable figures, with new quirks and idiosyncrasies that make them leap off the page. Best of all, however, is the author’s treatment of Peter Pan. Never having been a fan of the character as a child, I revelled in Schulz’s portrayal of Pan as the spoiled, self-centred, egotistical perpetual child we all know and hate. (Me? Biased? Never.) No matter what your feelings about the character, it’s undeniably fun to watch as the author takes the qualities for which Peter was once celebrated and uses them to make him an object of exaggerated ridicule instead. The evil Neverland crocodile has been slain? Well, Peter Pan must be responsible! He is the hero, after all. Never mind the fact that he was nowhere nearby when the confrontation occurred. Unsurprisingly, Schulz’s unique secondary characters of her own creation are equally, if not more, delightful, loveable and endearing. We have Roger, Jocelyn’s adventurous, steadfast, kind-hearted best friend, who encourages and stands by her during some of her darkest moments. Even better is Jocelyn’s eccentric band of pirates who are more well acquainted with supper clubs than swordplay. What they lack in practical experience they more than make up for in personality and imagination, however. We have Blind Bart, for whom two eyepatches are always better than one and sight is an unnecessary attribute for a lookout. Bart is also plagued with a rather inconvenient fear of the sea. Thankfully, because of his choice in eyewear he can’t see it, which means it also can’t see him. Obviously. Finally, we have One-Armed Jack, a beleaguered man unfortunately afflicted with the use of all his appendages, however sorely he might wish otherwise. There is no end to the colourful characters that populate this fun and magical story and I can’t wait for readers to become better acquainted with them all firsthand. The only thing to be plundered and pillaged will be your heart.

“Some fool once said that it is always darkest before the dawn. I contend that it is far darker in the dead of night, particularly if you happen to be trapped in a cave. Even more so if you are unconscious. Now that’s dark.”

Told from the perspective of an unnamed, cantankerous, omniscient narrator identified only as the foremost authority on Captain Hook, Jocelyn’s story is recounted as though being told to a group of children in a more informal, conversational style that was vaguely reminiscent of the great work of Roald Dahl. This choice of style allows the author to perfectly capture the fun and magic of oral storytelling and allows the narrator to intersperse the story with his own witty asides and anecdotes, such as “…The girl knew that somewhere down there, amidst all the wonder, a terrible beast was waiting. Reminds me a bit of my first wedding day.” or “Nothing lasts forever. Just ask any of my ex-wives.” Suffice it to say you’re lucky that this review isn’t composed entirely of my favourite passages, because this is only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. I can’t count the number of times I highlighted quotes, laughed aloud or read entire passages to someone sitting nearby because I was so desperate to share the wit and wonder of the author’s writing with someone else. Schulz’s narrative style is sharp, lively, droll and charming with a capital C. Nestled amongst pages of lost boys and mermaids, cannibals and fairies is an equally compelling, and equally important, message for young readers about the importance of remaining true to and believing in oneself. Time and time again Jocelyn faces an immense amount of pressure from external forces, be it from her grandfather, the finishing school, her crew of pirates, and even the late Captain James Hook himself, to behave in a certain manner or accomplish a certain task. It is ultimately up to Jocelyn, however, to determine which path is the correct one for her, and to have enough courage and confidence to accomplish all she sets out to do.

“Weigh anchor, boys!” Jocelyn called out to her crew. “We’re off on another adventure.”
But that, you beetle-headed boob, is a story for another day.”

This is middle grade fiction at its best. Clever, riotous, fast-paced and bewitching with an imaginative premise, a cast of sincere, loveable characters and a message both profound and deeply felt, Hook’s Revenge is a book I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend to even the most reluctant of middle grade readers. So pillage and plunder the nearest bookstore, library or even your best friend’s bookcase, if you have to. They’ll understand. It’s for a good cause. Simply ask yourself this: What would Jocelyn Hook do? (Blogger does not actually endorse acts of plunder and pillaging.)

Please Note: All quotations included in this review have been taken from an advance reader copy and therefore might be subject to change.
Profile Image for Karissa.
518 reviews7 followers
July 20, 2017
What an adorable read! I love retellings or prequel/sequel to famous fairy tales and whatnot. Many of the Peter Pan-esque books I've read have left me going meh (Unhooked and Tiger Lily come to mind) so it was nice to see that this book was based around Captain Hook (whose backstory someone should write because I would totally read it).

Jocelyn is 12 years old and lives with her grandfather, who wishes she were more ladylike. But Jocelyn idolizes her father, the great and feared Captain James Hook. At his wits end, her grandfather sends her to a boarding school - Miss Eliza Crumb-Biddlecomb's Finishing School for Young Ladies to be exact. But Jocelyn resists at every turn to the point where a maid is hired to wash and dress her appropriately. Eventually she learns that if she plays the game, the maid will no longer be needed and in the meantime, she can figure out how to escape.

She manages to make her only friend, a boy named Roger, and the two plan adventures together for when they finally leave the school. But when she is caught outside after hours with him, Roger is sent away. The same evening, a bird arrives at the school with a letter from none other than her father, Captain James Hook. He has died and left her an inheritance: the adventure of avenging his death.

Before long Jocelyn is living her dream. She is swept off to Neverland, gets a crew together with the help of Smee, and follows the tick tock of that old crocodile. This is a cute and light read that manages to lighten up some more serious events such as a character losing his arm due to it being bitten by the crocodile. The illustrations were a nice touch and the narrator was enjoyable. The narrator appears to be a grouchy old pirate.

I look forward to reading the sequel!
Profile Image for Hayley.
17 reviews1 follower
April 22, 2018
Hook's revenge is a fun and exciting book. My two sons, age 7 and 10 at the time of reading, absolutely loved it from beginning to end. Jocelyn is an intriguing and entertaining character, the writing is absolutely hilarious, and it has a really great plot that makes sense for the characters and the universe it is set in. full disclosure I do know the author personally, but that did not influence my love of the book. It only made me love the author more
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