Caroline Carlson

An Entirely Honorable Cover

I am so happy to be able to share the beautiful cover art for the US edition of The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates: Magic Marks the Spot, coming from Harper Children’s in September 2013:

Magic Marks the Spot

I don’t know about you, but I am completely in love with this cover. The cover artist is the brilliant Yarrow Cheney (check out some of his other work here), and the designer is HarperCollins Senior Art Director Amy Ryan. I’m so grateful to them for dressing up my book in its fanciest finery! They’ve done a wonderful job of capturing the spirit of the story, and I love all the little details the artist included, from the name of the pirate ship (the Pigeon) painted on the hull to the pet budgerigar, Fitzwilliam, flying alongside the sails. I highly recommend zooming in on the gargoyle’s adorable expression as he sits in his Nest at the front of the ship–just click the image for a larger version. And check out that hand-lettered title!

Here’s some of the jacket copy (that bit on the inside flap that tells you more about the book):

Hilary Westfield has always dreamed of being a pirate. She can tread water for thirty-seven minutes. She can tie a knot faster than a fleet of sailors. She particularly enjoys defying authority, especially if that authority orders her to wear a petticoat. She wouldn’t be caught dead eating tiny, crustless sandwiches, and she already owns a rather pointy sword. There’s only one problem: The Very Nearly Honorable League of Pirates refuses to let any girl join their ranks of scourges and scallywags.

Girls belong at Miss Pimm’s Finishing School for Delicate Ladies, learning to waltz, faint, and curtsy. But Hilary and her dearest friend, the gargoyle, have no use for such frivolous lessons— they are pirates! (Or very nearly.)

To escape from a life of petticoats and politeness, Hilary answers a curious advertisement for a pirate crew and suddenly finds herself swept up in a seafaring adventure that may or may not involve a map without an “X,” a magical treasure that likely doesn’t exist, a rogue governess who insists on propriety, a crew of misfit scallywags, and the most treacherous—and unexpected—villain on the High Seas.

Will Hilary find the treasure in time? Will she become a true pirate after all? And what will become of the gargoyle?

I hope you love this cover as much as I do! I’ve also discovered that if you’re feeling so inclined, the book is now available for preorder from Barnes & Noble and Amazon (and from other places soon–I’ll post the links on my Books page as they become available).



  1. So wonderful! I had no idea that the gargoyle had such a gleeful expression on his face. He’s loving it! Congratulations!

  2. Caroline, I LOVE this cover! The colors are so bright, and the ship is gorgeous! And who doesn’t adore a budgerigar? Kids are going to be snapping up this book, girl!

  3. Loveitloveitloveit!!

    And the bird’s name is Fitzwilliam. Hee!

  4. Arrr! Shiver me timbers, Caroline, your cover is fabulous! Congratulations, matey! 😀

  5. Woohoo! This cover is indeed awesome, Caroline. I love the depth, which gives me the feeling that there will be exciting things coming at us when we least expect it. Your name looks great at the bottom, too. Congratulations! I really can’t wait to read it.

  6. How much do I love this? I love how the gargoyle on the ship matches the one in the series title. I agree with Claire–kids are going to snatch this one up, and adults as well if they know what’s good for them. I checked out Yarrow Cheney’s portfolio too. It’s fantastic!

  7. I absolutely love this cover! This is exactly the kind of artwork you hope for and it really makes me want to snap up my own copy ASAP. Love the jacket copy as well!

  8. Wonderful! My girls will enjoy this adventure!

  9. Jill Aszling

    Hi Caroline, the cover looks absolutely wonderful, hope you are over the moon! Your mom told me a bit about it, but to see the final product is a real treat. Can’t wait to have my own copy and to share it with my grand-nephews. They will love it!

  10. Susan Brooks

    Love it! The grin of the gargoyle is just like a dog’s, with his head out the car window. The whole effect is gorgeous. Congratulations on the whole package, Caroline!

  11. Robin Herrera

    I LOVE IT!

  12. Adorable! Love the cover AND the title. How has this one escaped my notice this long? MUST READ. 🙂

  13. What a fabulous cover, Caroline! And the title is utterly brilliant. Roll on, September — I can’t wait to read this!

  14. What a scrumptious, delightful, fun and fabulous cover it is! Absolutely over-the-top fantastic. So happy to see your book cover is a perfect showcase for the wonderful story inside–and the talented author who wrote it.

  15. Aaaaaaaah, Caroline! I am so excited about your book. I LOVE the cover and LOVE LOVE LOVE the description. Can’t wait to read it 🙂

  16. It looks amazing! I can’t wait to read it.

  17. I LOVE IT!!!!! I’ve been so curious about your cover because I just absolutely love the description of this book, and this cover is PERFECT. Congratulations!!!

  18. I love it! Well done.

  19. Absolutely swash buckling cover for this book. Love it. I now want to read this book! Let me know if you want help with PR. This is just so darn cute, I’m sure it will be very popular.


  20. Oh my gosh. I can’t even tell you all the ways I love this cover! It is so fabulous!! I don’t think there’s any kid EVER who can see this cover and not want to read it. So good!

  21. Thank you all so much for these incredible comments!

  22. Nora Ericson

    Seriously beautiful cover, Caroline!! Excited for you!

  23. Caroline– Your cover is light & airy and full of fun! I can’t wait for my chance to read this swashbuckling adventure!

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