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Tough Boris /

Although he is a very tough pirate, Boris von der Borch cries when his parrots dies. Full description

Main Author:
Other Authors: Brown, Kathryn, 1955- ,
Format: Book
Language: English
Published: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1994
Edition: First edition.
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Boris von der Borch is a mean, greedy old pirate--tough as nails, through and through, like all pirates. Or is he? When a young boy sneaks onto Boris's ship, he discovers that even pirates cry. And so does he.

Review by Booklist Review

Ages 4-8. This picture book is full of surprises, both in the simple text and in the dramatic underlying story the pictures tell. On one level, it's a celebration of a glorious villain; like all pirates, tough Boris is massive and scruffy and greedy and fearless and scary. Brown's bold watercolor paintings show him in all his hideous glory, huge bristles sticking out of his chin, anger in his eyes, cutlass in his hand, as he handles his motley crew. But when his parrot dies, "he cried and cried. All pirates cry." As you go back over the pictures, you notice that his cheeky green parrot has always been with Boris, usually on his shoulder or perched on a finger. You also notice another whole story, not mentioned in the text. A small barefoot boy with a violin case stows away on the pirate ship. Tough Boris makes the boy play his instrument, and all the fierce crew members stand still and listen. When Boris' parrot dies, the boy and the pirate grieve together, their shoulders bowed. The boy also cries at the end when the pirate ship brings him back home and leaves him with his violin and bow alone on the shore. Unfortunately, the design is confusing; the boy appears on the imprint page but then remains hidden until the middle of the book; some kids may be puzzled about where he comes from. However, for those who look carefully, the wordless story is a poignant counterpoint to the swashbuckling adventure scenes. ~--Hazel Rochman

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Boris the pirate is as mean, greedy and scary as they come. But when his parrot dies, he mourns like anyone else. Ages 4-8. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-Tough Boris is a treasure. This easy-to-read picture book features a repetitive, engaging text; a very popular subject; and an interesting subplot played out in the colorful illustrations. Boris von der Borch is a scruffy and fearless pirate who is nonetheless tender enough to cry when his pet parrot dies. While the brief text simply lists his attributes (and those of all other pirates), the energetic watercolors paint the larger picture. Boris and his crew dig up some buried loot and divide it (unevenly, of course), squabble over a prized violin, and enjoy the cabin boy's impromptu concert (after he's been caught stealing the instrument from Boris). As the story ends, the boy is taken ashore, mourning his exile from the ship but still clutching the precious violin. A compelling and entertaining tale of adventure.-Lisa Dennis, The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Mem Fox was born on March 5, 1946 in Melbourne, Australia. She attended a drama school in London. She returned to Australia where she was a college professor.

She writes children's books including Possum Magic, Night Noises, Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge, Time for Bed, Koala Lou, Wombat Divine, Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes, Hello Baby!, A Giraffe in the Bath (co-written with Olivia Rawson), Count Goats!, and The Little Dragon. She has also written several books for adults.

She has received numerous awards including the 1990 Dromkeen Medal for distinguished services to children's literature, a 1991 Advance Australia Award for her outstanding contribution to Australian literature, and a medal in the 1993 Australia Day Honours awards for services to the cultural life of Australia.

(Bowker Author Biography)

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