It’s a well-documented fact that I am fond of all things Peter Pan. As an adult who never stopped reading children’s books or YA, it makes me both happy and wistful to think about never having to grow up.
So it’s only natural that I was instantly smitten upon hearing about Hook’s Revenge by Heidi Schulz, which is the story of Hook’s daughter! As I’ve gotten to know the author on Twitter over the last few months, I discovered a kindred spirit as a reader, chicken lover, and all-around fabulous and funny human being. It doesn’t hurt that she’s represented by one of the nicest people in the business, either.
We’re pleased as punch to be hosting the exclusive cover reveal for Heidi’s swashbuckling middle grade adventure. Are you ready for the awesome? I know I am! Without further ado, here’s your very first look at Hook’s Revenge!
Lookie the bookie! I love the vibrant colors and title treatment and the sense of movement on this cover, as well as the determined look on Jocelyn’s face. That is the face of someone who gets stuff DONE. Plus she has freckles and a snub nose and a riot of curls and an awesome outfit and sword! This artwork is filled with the promise of adventure, which is so perfect for a story like this.
Hook’s Revenge Synopsis
Twelve-year-old Jocelyn dreams of becoming every bit as daring as her infamous father, Captain James Hook. Her grandfather, on the other hand, intends to see her starched and pressed into a fine society lady. When she’s sent to Miss Eliza Crumb-Biddlecomb’s Finishing School for Young Ladies, Jocelyn’s hopes of following in her father’s fearsome footsteps are lost in a heap of dance lessons, white gloves, and way too much pink.
So when Jocelyn receives a letter from her father challenging her to avenge his untimely demise at the jaws of the Neverland crocodile, she doesn’t hesitate-here at last is the adventure she has been waiting for. But Jocelyn finds that being a pirate is a bit more difficult than she’d bargained for. As if attempting to defeat the Neverland’s most fearsome beast isn’t enough to deal with, she’s tasked with captaining a crew of woefully untrained pirates, outwitting cannibals wild for English cuisine, and rescuing her best friend from a certain pack of lost children, not to mention that pesky Peter Pan who keeps barging in uninvited.
The crocodile’s clock is always ticking in Heidi Schulz’s debut novel, a story told by an irascible narrator who is both dazzlingly witty and sharp as a sword. Will Jocelyn find the courage to beat the incessant monster before time runs out?
Heidi’s here with us today to talk about her love for this cover, as well as to give you a little taste of the story. Please make her feel welcome! And don’t forget to enter the giveaway for an ARC + pirate booty below–the book won’t be out until September, but we already have an copy ready to ship to our lucky winner.
Hook’s Revenge Cover Love
by Heidi Schulz
Thank you so much for hosting my cover reveal! I can’t think of anything more wonderfully appropriate than chatting about the denizens of the Neverland with Wendy Darling. It’s almost too perfect.
Now, can we just talk about that book jacket? I absolutely adore it. A few of the many things I love:
Jocelyn’s Fierce Determination
When she was a student/prisoner as Miss Eliza Crumb-Biddlecomb’s Finishing School for Girls, Jocelyn would have given anything for a high sea adventure, but oh my goodness, is that reality ever harder than she dreamed of. Her crew is far less ferocious than she had hoped and the crocodile is far more terrifying—to say nothing of the challenges the Neverland dishes out.
Your average person would give up and go home, but just look at her: Jocelyn Hook is anything but average.
Early cover sketches showed options both with and without Jocelyn’s not-quite-fearless crew. I’m thrilled that they made the final cut. It just wouldn’t be the same without them. On the front cover, from left to right, we have dear Mr. Smee, holding his beloved cutlass (which he has named Johnny Corkscrew), Blind Bart, the lookout (don’t mind the double eye-patches—he has excellent hearing), and, I believe that’s Jim McCraig with a Wooden Leg (the nature of which may surprise you).
On the back cover, mournfully gazing over the side of the ship is One-Armed Jack. Look closely and you will see the source of his sorrow, and his great shame: his “missing” arm, tucked up under his shirt. If only he could truly look battle weathered.
The Fearsome Neverland crocodile
Doesn’t it look sinister? It should. It is.
The Inside Flaps
I love how they look like rolling scrolls, similar to a certain letter delivered, by Neverland courier crow, to Jocelyn at school. A bit of that letter is quoted on the jacket copy.
Insider information: I created Captain Hook’s signature in Microsoft Paint some time ago. Even though I wrote the entire book, seeing that signature there gives me an extra little jolt of pride. I am an excellent Painter.
All the Amazing Extra Details
There is such a richness of detail on this jacket. The hand-lettering, the sparkling trail of fairy dust left in the fairy’s wake, that amazing assortment of lanterns, the tattered flag and the crows, even Jocelyn’s sassy striped socks—there is just so much to look at.
I’m proud that my words will be dressed so finely. All my thanks and admiration to everyone who worked on this cover, but most especially the incredibly talented illustrator, John Hendrix. Just wait until you see what he has done for the interior illustrations…
Heidi Schulz is a writer, reader, and giraffe suspicioner. She lives in Salem, Oregon with her husband, co-captaining a crew made of their teen daughter, a terrible little dog, and five irascible chickens. Her debut novel for middle grade readers, HOOK’S REVENGE, will be published in the US by Disney•Hyperion on September 16, 2014, and in the UK by The Chicken House shortly after. Bloomsbury Kids will publish her picture book debut, GIRAFFES RUIN EVERYTHING, in 2016.
Win Hook’s Revenge Pirate Booty!
- one of the very first Hook’s Revenge ARCs hot off the presses
- pirate pencil sharpener
- pirate log book
I’m told that Jocelyn needs to write a note several times, but has no pen and paper, so this will save you the trouble that she experiences. ;)
To enter, all you have to do is fill out the Rafflecopter form and leave a thoughtful comment below, telling us why you love the Peter Pan stories or what you like most about middle grade books. That’s it! Easy peasy.
Open to US residents aged 18 and older, or 13 and older with parental permission. Kids, get your parents to enter the contest if you want this. Good luck!
Are you excited for this book? I know I can’t wait to find out what Jocelyn gets up to. And okay, okay, I also want to know how I figure into the story as well.