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Children's Fiction Humorous Stories

The Pirate and the Penguin

illustrated by Patricia Storms

Owlkids Books Inc.
Initial publish date
Sep 2009
Humorous Stories, Australia & Oceania, Polar Regions
Recommended Age
4 to 18
Recommended Grade
p to 3
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2009
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it

Out of print

This edition is not currently available in bookstores. Check your local library or search for used copies at Abebooks.


Penguin is not your typical Antarctic bird. While his contented friends spend their days doing yoga, meditating, and meditating on yoga, this free spirit is planning his great escape. He’s done with the frigid, barren expanse of the South Pole. He’s had it with the communal escapades of his feathered fraternity. What he wants is adventure. And he’s ready to go it alone. Pirate, on the other hand, wants no part in his vocation’s raucous, adventurous ways. Exploration? Treasure? Conquest? Bah! Caught under the pounding Caribbean sun, surrounded by a crew of dimwits, this captain longs for a simpler life. Free from his itchy sunburns. Free from the endless travel. If only he could find such a place. From the mind of veteran children’s illustrator Patricia Storms comes the tale of how two misfits found each other and, in the process, found the solution to all of their problems. Loosely based on the classic story of The Prince and the Pauper, The Pirate and the Penguin follows these two characters as they inevitably converge and playfully discover the lives they’ve been seeking all along.

About the author


Patricia Storms est une auteure-illustratrice de livres pour enfants reconnue. Elle a reçu de nombreuses récompenses. Elle a notamment illustré Les 13 fantômes de l’Halloween et Le labo sous zéro. Patricia vit à Toronto.


Patricia Storms is a Toronto-based illustrator who has created editorial illustrations, greeting cards, and comic strips. Most recently, she has illustrated 13 Ghosts of Halloween (Les 13 fantômes de l'Halloween) and Snowy Science (Le labo sous zéro). She has worked on magazine covers for Chirp and the science-based magazine for kids, Know.


Patricia Storms' profile page


  • Commended, Canadian Toy Testing Council, Top 10 Great Books

Editorial Reviews

Storms’s cartooning background is evident in the liveliness she achieves with simple lines and a few colors.

Quill & Quire

Visual humor abounds in this oddball tale of two misfits who resolve their discontent by trading places.

Publishers Weekly

…a surefire audience pleaser…It’s all quite silly, but in the end, appealing.


Expressive cartoon illustrations shine against the clean backdrop, supported by humorous details…

School Library Journal

This is a fun and touching story filled with lots of great humor. Engaging dialogue moves the narrative along quickly, while the use of simple language reveals the depths of Pirate and Penguin’s hopes and desires…This book marks the spot for a very fun read.

Canadian Children’s Book News

Wonderfully expressive faces, hyperbolic cartoons and the occasional use of speech bubbles combine to make illustrations quirky and fun. This one will hit many a funny bone in old and young alike.

Kirkus Reviews

Patricia [Storms's] quirky humor and comical illustrative style are the perfect pairing to bring this parable of finding contentment to life for the children of today.

Picture Book Junkies

"This simple story was a nice springboard into a conversation about how different people might like or want different things – the beginnings of empathy!"

This West Coast Mommy (blog)

Readers young and old will delight in this charming tale of what it really takes to show this world the real you.

Insatiable Readers blog

The Pirate and the Penguin is a delightfully imaginative [and] silly book that will bring a smile to many young readers faces while giving them permission to follow their dreams.

CM Magazine: Canadian Review of Materials

Humorous drawings are large and colorful…

Resource Links

With humor both broad and subtle in the text and the illustrations, this book will be read again and again at our house.

Librarian Reviews

The Pirate and the Penguin

Penguin is bored and cold. He hates everything about the South Pole, from Chilly Cove to doing yoga. So Penguin sets sail on an ice floe in search of sun and adventure. Meanwhile, Pirate is bored and hot. He hates everything about his life, from the Seasick Seas to looking for treasure. What he wants is inner peace and a bit of coolness. When Pirate’s ship and Penguin’s ice floe collide, Pirate makes Penguin walk the plank for trespassing. However, Pirate honours Penguin’s last request to wear his pirate hat, thereby transforming both of their lives for good. The only question is: will their idea work?

This is a fun and touching story filled with lots of great humour. Engaging dialogue moves the narrative along quickly, while the use of simple language reveals the depth of Pirate’s and Penguin’s hopes and desires. Patricia Storms’ pen and ink and watercolour illustrations are rich with detail and whimsy. Rather than carrying a sword, Pirate wields a Shiver- Me-Timbers Back Scratcher. Pirate and his crew also have access to various maps that can lead them to such places as the mall, fridge, bathroom and grandma’s house. The end papers are also made up of wonderfully whimsical maps of “the really boring (and cold!) South Pole” and “the hot and itchy Caribbean Sea.” This book marks the spot for a very fun read.

Source: The Canadian Children's Bookcentre. Winter 2010. Vol.33 No.1.

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