Review Blog

Jul 20 2015

The Mapmaker Chronicles: Prisoner of the Black Hawk by A.L.Tait

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Hachette, 2015. ISBN 9780734415790
(Age: 8+) Highly recommended. Themes: Adventure, Sailing, Cartography, Pirates, Monsters, Friendship. Set sail on the Libertas with Captain Zain, mapmaker Quinn, adventurous Ash and all the crew in another swashbuckling adventure. This second, welcome addition to The Mapmaker Chronicles is filled to the brim with monsters, sailing perilous seas, mapping uncharted waters, fighting scurrilous pirates and evil villains and narrow escapes.
Three ships leave their homeland Verdania in a year-long race to map the unchartered world, thus far they've encountered many dangers and survived four and half months away from home. The rigorous daily training undertaken by Quinn and Ash (disguised as a boy) comes in handy when they land on an exotic island. They meet Mr Frey a Verdanian (with an interesting past) and are welcomed into his home, tasting cacao for the first time. Tomas his son soon becomes a friend. Quinn and Ash are caught up in a hazardous escapade, there's an encounter with a giant serpent, being captured and trapped in a pit and attacked by small piranha-like fish - pescarn. Quinn is separated and forced into a cage aboard a rival ship, where the Gelynion captain demands the young mapmaker continue to chart their course on his map stolen by Kurt the Northern boy from the Black Hawk.
When pirates invade the Black Hawk Quinn uses his skills, courage and initiative to break free of his cage and escape from the clutches of his captors and the raiders. The fight scene is extremely gripping and readers will be drawn into the drama.
Author A. L. Tait delivers another fast paced and exciting fantasy adventure.
Rhyllis Bignell

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