Oh, how I loved this book! I heard Chris Addison talking about the series on 'My Life in Books', and the extract he read out had me (and him!) in stitches, so when I saw this one at the library I snapped it up. It's actually the third book in the series, but it didn't matter in the slightest that I didn't start with The Pirates! in an Adventure with Scientists
. It's still brilliant!
It's a hilarious, lively, tongue-in-cheek and completely addictive little book in which the Pirate Captain (Terror of the High Seas), his number two (the pirate with a scarf) and his motley band of rogues team up with Marx and Engels to find out who is attempting to discredit the communist movement across Europe. It's a real romp - but if you want to find out how statuesque blonde ladies, opera, French schoolchildren, waxworks, bears and a volcano fit into the story... well, you'll just have to read it for yourself!
The humour is sly, ridiculous and occasionally a little bit naughty, and with the genuinely informative but pithy footnotes scattered through the pages, I can see why previous reviewers have often drawn comparisons with Terry Pratchett. A set of these books would make a great gift idea I think, whether the recipient is a keen reader or not, and I'll definitely be keeping an eye out for the rest of the series for more chaos and chuckles in the near future!