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Pirate Stew

Written by Neil Gaiman

Illustrated by Chris Riddell

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Pirate Stew Review

Adventure Stories Books of the Month Featured Books for 5+ readers Featured Books for 7+ readers Funny

A riotous rhyming picture book by a pair of ingenious book-aneers

October 2020 Book of the Month

What a witty feast of sing-song verse and visuals this is. Chris Riddell’s vibrant characters whish and whoosh in rhythm with Neil Gaiman’s rambunctious rhymes to create a hearty banquet befitting a pirate crew.


The swaggering story begins when a brother and sister are introduced to their babysitter, a certain scar-faced, grey-haired, peg-legged ship’s cook called Long John Mc Ron. Moments after their parents have left, Long John opens the door to an entire crew of hungry pirates, and so he does what any respectable ship’s cook would do – he cooks up “Pirate Stew! Pirate Stew! Eat it and you won’t be blue. You can be a pirate too!” 


With a rib-tickling twist that will send readers into fits of giggles, Pirate Stew is buccaneering blast of a book that demands to be read aloud, acted out and treasured like ill-gotten gains!

Joanne Owen

Other Info

“Pirate Stew began in early 2009, when I scribbled a handful of lines of a poem about the sorts of ingredients that would go into a Pirate Stew down on a scrap of paper. I kept the scrap of paper in my wallet as the years went by, and would look at it and feel guilty. And then my son was two, and I thought, I should write a book I can read to him when he's older, and I remembered the scrap of paper, and knew that it was time to tell that story. It is a most piratical adventure, intended for anyone of any age who likes pirates, cooking, swashbuckling and/or doughnuts, who wants a fun book to read aloud and share, or who just wants to lose themselves in Chris Riddell's gloriously piratical pictures.” Neil Gaiman

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Pirate Stew Synopsis

Meet LONG JOHN McRON, SHIP'S COOK . . . and the most unusual babysitter you've ever seen.

Long John has a whole crew of wild pirates in tow, and - for two intrepid children - he's about to transform a perfectly ordinary evening into a riotous adventure beneath a pirate moon. It's time to make some PIRATE STEW.

Pirate Stew! Pirate Stew! Pirate Stew for me and you!

Pirate Stew, Pirate Stew Eat it and you won't be blue

You can be a pirate too!

Marvellously silly and gloriously entertaining, this tale of pirates, flying ships, donut feasts and some rather magical stew is perfect for all pirates, both young and old. With a deliciously rhyming text from master storyteller Neil Gaiman, and spellbinding illustrations by the supremely talented Chris Riddell, three-times-winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal, this is the picture book of the year! Joyful, quirky and action-packed, it makes a spectacular and magical gift.

Pirate Stew Press Reviews

Neil Gaiman is the nearest thing children's books have to a rock star: if you enjoy fantasy, he is irresistible. - The Times

The talented dream team of Gaiman and Riddell have done it again. Fantastic rhyming story with the most fabulously intricate illustrations. I could look at them for hours. Perfect for reading out loud or for any little readers, piratical or otherwise - NetGalley Reviewer

Gaiman's literary prowess and Riddell's genius illustrations come together again in a brilliant book, which is guaranteed to fly off bookshelves and library shelves around the world - NetGalley Reviewer

Fans of Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell are going to love this. Funny and magical and bound to be a great story before bedtime - NetGalley Reviewer

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781526614711
Publication date: 02/09/2021
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens Books an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781526614728
Publication date: 01/10/2020
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens Books an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781526614728
Publication date: 1st October 2020
Author: Neil Gaiman
Illustrator: Chris Riddell
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens Books an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Format: Hardback
Pagination: 48 pages
Suitable for: 5+ readers, 7+ readers
Genres: Adventure Stories, Funny
Recommendations: Books of the Month, Reluctant Readers
Collections: Our favourite children's books of 2020,

About Neil Gaiman

Bestselling author Neil Gaiman has long been one of the top writers in modern comics, as well as writing books for readers of all ages. He is listed in the Dictionary of Literary Biography as one of the top ten living post-modern writers, and is a prolific creator of works of prose, poetry, film, journalism, comics, song lyrics, and drama. Gaiman was the creator/writer of monthly cult DC Comics horror-weird series, Sandman, which won nine Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards. Norman Mailer said of Sandman: "Along with all else, Sandman is a comic strip for intellectuals, and I say ...

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