The Pirates of Scurvy Sands - Story Snug

The Pirates of Scurvy Sands by Jonny Duddle

Matilda and The Jolley-Rogers are back in The Pirates of Scurvy Sands, a holiday adventure which is published today. We first met Jim Lad and his family in The Pirates Next Door which was one of the very first picture books that I bought for my daughter and we love absolutely love this new story.

The Story: Matilda joins The Jolley Rogers on their holiday in Scurvy Sands but rumours start to spread that Matilda is a landlubber. To ease suspicions Matilda must start behaving more like a pirate so she and Jim start to look for Jack McMuddle’s long lost treasure…

In Scurvy Sands the chalets are made from broken ships and The Cruncher Club offers activities for Matilda, Jim Lad and little sister Nugget. Pirate delicacies such as seagull soup and sharks brains are on the menu at the local pub and a colourful cast of pirate characters, including a pirate monkey, have strong opinions about a landlubber being on the island.

Several of the pages in The Pirates of Scurvy Sands are laid out in the style of a comic book and a mix of rhyming text and speech bubbles move the story along. There is so much wonderful pirate themed detail in the illustrations, skulls adorn everything and we particularly love the skull shaped teapot and the skull shaped ice creams. There’s a fabulous fold out map of Scurvy Sands on the underside of the book’s jacket and one of the double spreads folds out to show Matilda and Jim Lad digging for Jack McMuddle’s treasure.

Both the text and the illustrations are full of humour, we particularly love the dentist, Philippa McCavity, who is horrified by Matilda’s sparkly teeth. The pirate parents who are worried about their children learning table manners from Matilda make us laugh and we’re definitely not tempted to try the pub food! Jonny Duddle’s illustrations are so full of wonderful details that my daughter spends a long time looking at each page, there are still surprises after multiple readings!

This is a story that also celebrates friendship, despite their different backgrounds Matilda and Jim Lad share a strong bond. Matilda is an independent, determined character who is undeterred by the prejudices of those around her. She’s also clever and, despite not passing the pirate test, she ultimately earns everybody’s respect by proving that she’s got what it takes to be a pirate.

Happy book birthday Jonny Duddle!

Age Range: 4+

Author / Illustrator: Jonny Duddle

Thank you to Templar Publishing for sending us a copy of The Pirates of Scurvy Sands, we hope that Matilda and Jim Lad will be back again in another adventure.

You can meet Jonny Duddle and hear more about his pirates as they travel around the UK during February. We had a fantastic time when we went to Jonny’s event at The Edinburgh Book Fest 🙂

The Pirates of Scurvy Sands tour - Story Snug

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19 responses to “The Pirates of Scurvy Sands by Jonny Duddle”


  1. Acorn Books avatar

    We love this book! The Pirates Next Door is one of our favourites, so glad to see Matilda and Jim Lad back together! #readwithme


    1. Catherine avatar

      We love Matilda and Jim Lad too and have also enjoyed their adventures in Jonny’s early chapter books.


  2. Kate avatar

    Pirate stories always appeal throughout the generations and this looks like a lot of fun particularly with great illustrations. Good to see strong female character too #ReadWithMe


    1. Catherine avatar

      Matilda is one of our favourite picture book heroes 🙂


  3. Yet Another Blogging Mummy avatar

    This sounds a fun book. Even though my boys are older now, I know they would still like this #readwithme


    1. Catherine avatar

      There are so many wonderful details in Jonny’s illustrations that his picture books can be enjoyed by children of all ages 🙂


  4. Sarah MumofThree World avatar

    This sounds fab! Pirate stories are always entertaining and this sounds like a particularly funny one.


  5. Cheryl | Time To Craft avatar

    Sounds a good book. I miss reading books like this to my children. I like the message. #MMBC


    1. Catherine avatar

      I’m not looking forward to the time when my daughter doesn’t want me to read aloud to her any more 🙁


  6. chantelle hazelden avatar
    chantelle hazelden

    Pirates is always a good theme to go for with kids isn’t it! Like the sound of a more comic book style layout. Thanks for sharing with #readwithme


    1. Catherine avatar

      We love Jonny’s pirates. Each spread is laid out differently and the illustrations are full of so many wonderful pirate details 🙂


  7. Kim Carberry avatar

    Ahh! This sounds like a wonderful book. Full of giggles. x


    1. Catherine avatar

      There’s lots to laugh about, especially in the illustrations.


  8. Kate Fever avatar

    My youngest 2 love a good pirate story, we’ll look out for this one! Thanks for linking up with #TriedTested


    1. Catherine avatar

      I hope you enjoy it. The Jolley-Rogers are quite nice pirates really 🙂


  9. Fiona Cambouropoulos avatar

    Oh we love a good pirate story, this sounds great. #TriedTested


    1. Catherine avatar

      We’re big fans of The Jolley-Rogers!


  10. Jayne @ Sticky Mud and Belly Laughs avatar

    What a fun book! I love the sound of the skull-shaped teapot but I don’t think I would like to try the local delicacies of seagull soup and sharks brains!

    Thanks so much for sharing with #MMBC. Hope to see you Monday 🙂


    1. Catherine avatar

      It is a fun book 🙂 Would you prefer a dodo burger?!