Swap!Steve Light. Candlewick Press, 2016

A young pirate begins a series of swaps for the materials needed to repair his gloomy friend’s decrepit ship. A single button is traded for two teacups. At first I as confused as to what teacups had to do with the ship. But I wasn’t in the dark for long. The sparse text and pen and ink illustrations highlighted with bursts of colour take the reader through this well-paced tale of resourcefulness and friendship. Teacups for coils of rope: SWAP! Coils of rope for oars: SWAP! The routine continues, until the ship is seafaring once again.

Trades for items key to any pirate and his ship–hats, birds, flags and a figure head–add an element of playfulness.

My children really enjoyed this book, and my 4 year-old ‘read’ it herself, which was a confidence builder for my beginning reader!

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