Blog Tour (Spotlight): Pirate Queens by Leigh Lewis

Welcome to the Pirate Queens Blog Tour!

To celebrate Women’s History Month and the release of Pirate Queens by by Leigh Lewis and illustrated by Sara Gómez Woolley on January 11th, 5 sites will be featuring exclusive guest posts from Leigh and Sara plus 5 chances to win a Pirate Queens prize pack!

Two Truths and a Lie
with Leigh Lewis

Two Truths and a Lie is a game where you tell three things about a person, place or thing, and others are left to guess which two are true and which one is a lie. What follows is THREE Two Truths and a Lie about the following: pirates in general, Grace O’Malley (an Irish chieftainess and one of the six pirates featured in Pirate Queens), and me!

About Pirates:

1. Many pirate ships banned bananas onboard, believing them to be bad luck on boats, causing bad weather or the scarcity of fish.
2. The word “pirate” comes from the same Latin root as the word “irate,” and means a human who is filled with rage.
3. Some pirates did wear eye patches, but not because they were missing an eye. It was to keep one eye ready for darkness, so that they could adjust more quickly between the bright ship deck and the darkness below deck.

About Grace O’Malley:

1. When O’Malley was a girl, eagles attacked her sheep, so she ran to scare them away. One of them scratched her with its talon, and she had a scar on her forehead forever, kinda like Harry Potter.
2. O’Malley was such a skilled fighter that her crew nicknamed her sword-fighting hand “Sure Thumb and the Blades of Glory.”
3. When she met Queen Elizabeth I, O’Malley sneezed and was given a beautiful, embroidered handkerchief. She blew her nose, then threw the handkerchief into the fire. The Queen’s aide was appalled and asked why she would ruin such an expensive handkerchief, to which she replied something like, “It was soiled. Only the filthiest of humans would reuse a soiled handkerchief.”

About Moi (Leigh Lewis):

1. I hold a patent for a lawn chair that allows one to face the ground and read a book while laying out in the sun.
2. I have dual citizenship in the U.S. and Turkey.
3. I had a very docile dwarf hamster named Patricia who escaped into the walls of my house and reappeared two months later with actual muscles and a fierce, pirate-like spirit.




Answer Key:

About Pirates:

#2 is the lie. The word “pirate” comes from the Indo-European root of “Per,” meaning “try” or “risk.” From there, we can trace it to Greek, where “Pieran” meant “to attempt” or “to attack,” and then to Latin, where we find “Pirata,” which meant “attacker.”

About Grace O’Malley:

Left: An early draft of Grace O’Malley’s portrait. Right: The final version in the book.

#2 is the lie, though who wouldn’t want their hand to be nicknamed, “Sure Thumb and the Blades of Glory”? In fact, feel free to refer to my sword-fighting hand (I’m a righty) by that nickname from here on out.

About Moi (Leigh Lewis):

Alas, though I was 13 when I came up with a concept for a sun lounger that would allow me to read and drink with using a straw while sunbathing face down, I never patented it. #1 is the lie.

Buy | Add on Goodreads

“For readers who want more herstory in history.”

“…an ethnically inclusive selection of real-life women who commanded ships, wielded cutlasses, and struck fear into the hearts of others.”
–Publishers Weekly

This wow-worthy book proves that women have been making their mark in all aspects of history―even the high seas!

Meet Ching Shih, a Chinese pirate who presided over a fleet of 80,000 men (by contrast, Blackbeard had some 300). Get the scoop on Anne Bonny who famously ran away from an arranged marriage to don trousers and brandish a pistol in the Bahamas. And there are more!

Each pirate profile includes a dramatic original poem presented against a backdrop of gorgeous full-color art by award-winning illustrator Sara Gómez Woolley. Each profile is followed by fascinating information about the real life and times of these daring (and dangerous!) women.

Vetted by the world’s leading pirate experts and historians, this book is a cool and edgy gift. It’s also perfect for any curious kid who dreams of adventure and for parents who are eager to show their tweens and teens that history is more diverse, daring, and surprising than what is typically found in textbooks.

Website | Twitter | Instagram

Leigh Lewis is a children’s writer and poet who has been “playing pirates” since she could walk. She does her best work in loud cafes, on long journeys, or in bed, late at night while everyone else sleeps. By way of her adventures on the high seas, she calls many places home, inlcuding Turkey, Greece, England, and Russia, as well as towns across the United States. She eventually navigated her way back to her hometown of Columbus, Ohio. Leigh spends her time there dreaming up stories for kids of all ages, buoyed by an amazing crew– her husband, their three indomitable daughters, and a four-inch turtle named Shellbert.

Website | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook

Sara Gómez Woolley is an award-winning Latina illustrator, graphic novelist, and educator living and working in Brooklyn, NY. Her children’s book Charlotte and the Quiet Place received a Foreword Reviews INDIES Book of the Year Gold Medal and an IPPY Award Silver Medal, and has been featured in Creative Quarterly: Journal of Art and Design.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

  • One (1) winner will receive a hardcover of Pirate Queens, plus a bookmark, sticker, temporary tattoo, and eye patch!
  • US/Can only
  • Ends 3/20 at 11:59pm ET
  • Check out the other stops on the tour for more chances to win!

Blog Tour Schedule:
March 7thNovel Novice IG
March 8th Mrs. Book Dragon
March 9thYA Books Central
March 10thImagination Soup
March 11thCasia’s Corner

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