6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Small but perfectly formed silliness,
This review is from: The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists (Hardcover)
At a 131 pages long - and most of those made up of dialogue in relatively large point font - this is much more the script for a sitcom episode than it is a novel. And as such it is superb. The style of humour is very much akin to Blackadder with a hint of Harry Hill and perhaps Mark Steel at times. The plot in this episode sees the Pirate Captain capture the Beagle on its historical voyage of scientific discovery to the Galapagos Islands. Finding the ship full of monkeys rather the expected treasure, the pirates become embroiled in a highly unlikely caper to rescue Darwin's brother from the evil clutches of the diabolical Bishop of Oxford. The adventure comes to a dramatic climax in the Natural History Museum and then Big Ben.
But the premise of the story isn't really important - being basically a sit-com it's just a vehicle for the characters and gags and uses some familiar sitcom devices very well. With his pirate crew, Defoe juxtaposes the traditional antics of scurvy knaves with the trappings of the urbane, placing characters from the Spanish Main incongruously into modern day Britain with cultural references from left-field.
It is fun. You will have a giggle reading it and look forward to the next instalment.