Friesen Press (2022)
Reviewed by Tammy Ruggles for Reader Views (07/2022)
“Captain Boy” by John Thomson is a delightful children’s book with colorful, engaging illustrations—all about a boy who loves submarines and buys one for a dollar.
This story will appeal to any young reader who fancies boats, traveling under the ocean, and exploring submarines. You will immediately latch on to the story as you step inside the boy’s imagination and his submarine. But the story has a little reality to it, too, which also makes it a fun read, because not all is well with this particular submarine. The author does a fine job entertaining readers with the rhyming verses, and the playful illustrations go perfectly with the text. As you read, you will also get a working knowledge of submarines, their parts, what they do, how they work, etc. And, when the sub springs a slow leak, we find Captain Boy may be having second thoughts about owning his very own sub but comes up with a satisfying solution for himself and the readers.
Thomson has taken his love and knowledge of submarines and turned it into a children’s book that is both informative and entertaining. It seems that he knows what young readers like in a story and bases his execution and style on that expertise. The illustrations are fanciful, but also educational, as the parts of the submarine are identified and labeled. Also, the end of the story hosts a glossary of submarine/nautical terms for the reader to learn and enjoy.
“Captain Boy” is a short book but packed with fun, a multitude of things to learn about the sea, and also the story of the boy and his adventure as a first-time visitor on his very own submarine. As readers will discover by the end of the story, wanting something and the reality of having that something are two different things. There is also a lesson in dedication and reaching goals. But I won’t spoil the plotline here—that’s for readers to enjoy.
Overall, “Captain Boy”, by John Thomson, is a spirited children’s book that most, if not all, children will enjoy. It’s also a great gift idea for those interested in all things nautical.