Dirty Joe the Pirate (Bill Harley, author. Jack. E. Davis, illustrator. Harper Collins, 2008)
My 3 ½ year-old picked this one off the shelf at the library. It has promptly become a favourite family picture book. Only our best picture book finds are saved for Grandpa to read when he visits and this one made the cut (Grandpa loved it, too). It is silly and full of surprises – it quite possibly contains the most surprises out of any picture books that I have read. The book is so obviously the opposite of its subtitle (‘A True Story’), even to my three-year old, that parents will not stop for more than second to wonder if pirates forcing other pirates to give over their underwear is an inappropriate message for children. Enjoy this rhyming tale for what it is – outrageously goofy and purely entertaining. Bill Harley is a children’s singer, songwriter, and storyteller and we easily found an on-line video of him performing this story; my girls were won over once again.