News & Announcements

“How to Be a Pirate” LEGO Little Golden Book

Two new LEGO books have been announced as part of the Little Golden Books range, and the one we care about is titled: “How to Be a Pirate“.

The Classic Pirates already know how be pirates but for you clueless landlubbers, this book could provide useful advice for mastering the high seas. Or more likely it will be aimed towards children with IQs slightly higher than your average pirate.

Along with the other Golden Book, “How To Be A Knight“, it will be unleashed upon the world 5 July, 2022, according to the Amazon and Penguin Random House websites.


Official Synopsis

A brand-new LEGO® Little Golden Book about using courage and creativity to be a pirate!

Cecilia’s dream of becoming a pirate and sailing the seas comes true when she joins her grandfather’s pirate crew! See what happens in this sweet and silly storybook that’s part of a new line of LEGO® Little Golden Books. The combination of two classics–LEGO Minifigures and Little Golden Books–makes this the perfect book for kids ages 4 and up or collectors of all ages!

Little Golden Books enjoy nearly 100% consumer recognition. They feature beloved classics, hot licenses, and new original stories . . . the classics of tomorrow.

LEGO, the LEGO logo, the Brick and Knob configurations and the Minifigure are trademarks and/or copyrights of the LEGO Group. ©2022 The LEGO Group. All rights reserved.

LEGO Golden Book "How to Be a Pirate"

A training manual for aspiring young pirates


Cecilia’s dream of becoming a pirate and sailing the seas comes true when she joins her grandfather’s pirate crew!

Well now, who might her grandfather be? Have the authors honoured the continuity of past LEGO Pirates literature? Or have they forged their own canon?

Perhaps her grandfather is Roger Redbeard, or maybe it’s Brickbeard… or maybe it’s BOTH! After all, back in 1964 Paul McCartney said everyone is entitled to two grandfathers.
(The correct answer is Metalbeard)

See what happens in this sweet and silly storybook that’s part of a new line of LEGO® Little Golden Books.

Sweet and silly? Silly yes, but “Sweet” is not a word used in conjunction with pirates. So what does that mean? She breaks into a sugarcane plantation and steals all the sugar?

The combination of two classics–LEGO Minifigures and Little Golden Books–makes this the perfect book for kids ages 4 and up or collectors of all ages!

Good thing they added “collectors of all ages” so childless AFOLs don’t feel like losers for buying a booked aimed at 4 year olds.  Oh wait… it does say “and up” with no upper limit specified.

Little Golden Books enjoy nearly 100% consumer recognition.

Nearly 100% consumer recognition? So like 99.99999%? How did they arrive at this figure anyway?

They feature beloved classics, hot licenses, and new original stories . . . the classics of tomorrow.

“Hot licenses”, ay? That almost sounds scandalous!


What are Little Golden Books?

If you’re in that 0.000001% who doesn’t recognise Little Golden Books, first be aware they’re not actually made from gold. So using them as payment for grog over the bar probably won’t work. But definitely try it and let the Classic Pirates know how successful you were.

More Pirate Themed Golden books

Pirate themed Golden Books have been done before

Penguin Random House who sell mountains of books, have this small biography on their website:

In 1942, the launch of Little Golden Books revolutionized children’s book publishing by making high-quality picture books available at affordable prices. More than 60 years later, many of the original Golden Book titles are still wildly popular, with The Poky Little Puppy topping the list of ten bestselling children’s books of all time. Golden Books’ backlist is teeming with classics such as Dorothy Kunhardt’s Pat the Bunny, and features the stories and artwork of children’s book legends Mary Blair, Margaret Wise Brown, Richard Scarry, Eloise Wilkins, Garth Williams, and many more. Today, the Golden Books imprint includes an array of storybooks, novelty books, and coloring and activity books featuring all of the most popular licenses, including Disney, Nickelodeon, Barbie, Thomas & Friends, The Cat in the Hat, Sesame Street, Marvel Super Heroes, and DC Super Friends. Golden Books continues to reissue the best of its backlist in a variety of formats, including ebooks and apps, as well as bringing out brand-new books in these evolving new formats.

In short, it says Little Golden Books started out writing children stories based on original characters… but sold out to licensing in the early 21st century.


So who wrote this book, anyway?

Online retailers list “Golden Books” as the author. Now this is probably a brand name rather than the pseudonym of the author, indicating when someone lends their talents to this brand, they become part of the collective. Their identity is irrelevant! So if the story is really good, well too bad! No recognition for the author! But on the flip side, if the story sucks barnacles, the author can save face and say “Hey, that wasn’t written by me, it was those stupid Golden Books who wrote that“.


Haven’t we Seen this Madness before?

Aye, that we have. This is not the first hardcover tie-in. When the LEGO Pirates theme was initially released in 1989, the LEGO Group commissioned Ladybird Books to produce four stories to flesh out the universe.  The books incorporated set and minifigures names found in the UK catalogues and promotional media, but they also mentioned names like “Captain Foul” and the “Ironram” which didn’t have counterparts in the product line.

The Ironram and Captain Foul's Ship

The inner back cover of each Ladybird book.

Captain Foul from the Ladybird Books

Captain Foul as he appeared in the second Ladybird book “Captain Roger’s Birthday”

Were these unproduced concepts in intended for release? Or merely the contribution of the writers? We may never know, but a minifig influenced by Captain Foul’s mustache found it’s way into Minifigures Series 8 released back in 2012. Perhaps a bit of stretch, but maybe these books have a small influence over what came later.

The cover the upcoming Golden Book features a design very similar to the Pirate Girl released in Minifigures Series 20, sans the plume, and the direction of her strap has been reversed.

Covers of the LEGO Pirates Ladybird Books

This is the covers of the four books

In a future Blog Post we may explore these books further, but for now here are the titles if you’d like to do your own digging:

  1. Will and the Gold Chase
  2. Captain Roger’s Birthday
  3. Adventure on Shark Island
  4. The Royal Visit

Also, there were two activity books and purportedly three unreleased Ladybird Books, but we’ll save those for another time.

But you can dive into the Ladybird Books topic in the LEGO Pirates Forum right now for further discussion.


Didn’t we See this Madness again?

Nay, not quite. In 2011 a book title “Brickbeard’s Treasure” by Hannah Dolan was released by DK Publishing. Rather than being fully hand illustrated, it utilised photography from the 2009-2010 wave of Pirate sets in, conjunction with artwork found on set boxes and promotional media. In fact, it appears only the story is original, with all visual sbeing repurposed to fit the story’s narrative.

LEGO Pirates "Brickbeard's Treasure" Cover

Here be the front cover

The Amazon.com synopsis states:

Join the adventure in LEGO® Pirates: Brickbeard’s Treasure. Follow Captain Brickbeard and his pirate crew as they hunt for treasure on the high seas in this Level 1 reader from DK!

And there was also the NinjagoPirates vs Ninja”  book published by Schoolastic in 2013, but since that was released as promotional material for the Ninjago theme, we shall speak no more of it.


Conclusion

As the protagonist appears to be female, may this story be an inspiration to little girls all over the world, helping them to develop a love for LEGO Pirates, so one day, they feel inspired to appear as a pirate wench on the homepage of Classic-Pirates.com, sending love and kisses to everyone.

But seriously, new LEGO Pirates media targeted towards children helps stimulate awareness and generates interest for the Pirate theme. Golden Books have been highly recognisable brand for decades, so what better vessel to deliver the Pirate theme to young children in the absence of LEGO Pirate sets on toy store shelves.