Some years ago, I picked up The Pirates! In An Adventure with Scientists (2004) by Gideon Defoe. The title may give you a hint as to the ludicrousness of these books, as may the books that follow in the series
- The Pirates! In An Adventure with Whaling (2005)
- The Pirates! In An Adventure with Communists (2006)
- The Pirates! In An Adventure with Napoleon (2008)
The Pirates! books are written in a style that might initially fool you into thinking that they are children’s books – they have many children’s books conventions, like naming the pirates ‘The Pirate Captain’ and ‘The Pirate in Green’ instead of giving them, well, names; The Pirates! In An Adventure with Whaling begins with the pirates finding shapes in clouds (“‘That one looks almost exactly like a whale!’ ‘No it doesn’t. It looks like a pile of rags with an ant stood on them. But for some reason the ant only has five legs.'”) – but they are clearly meant for a (slightly) more mature audience.
As with the best comedic books, The Pirates! books are ridiculous and full of nonsense (and a prize-winning ham!). Check out Gideon Defoe’s website for some extracts if you don’t believe me.
P.S. I have been told by a comedian friend who met Mr Defoe that Defoe is not in fact his name but rather a nom de plume. That the two men then had a spat about factual accuracy in comedic writings confuses the matter, but I don’t think Andy would lie… It’s plausible that Gideon’s real name is Richard Murkin, because that name randomly shows up on a couple of Wikipedia pages, but I really don’t know.
Also, the name ‘Gideon Defoe’ really is too good to be true.