Little Buc's Buccaneer Book Club: Shiver Me Letters - A Pirate ABC By June Sobel

Little Buc

Ahoy, Book-Loving Buccaneers -

Thanks for your emails telling me how much you enjoyed out first book, Sammy The Seasick Pirate by Janelle Springer-Willms.  I am happy to report that seasickness seems to have vanished aboard the TS Kennedy.  The warm weather and calm seas have everyone smiling.

Today's book is Shiver Me Letters: A Pirate ABC by June Sobel.  The colorful illustrations are by Henry Cole.  

All pirates love treasure, but these pirates aren't just hunting for chests of gold coins.  They are searching for the letters from A to Z

Spotting the letters along with the Captain and the crew is pretty exciting.

I have been reading the book on the Bridge in the early morning, staying out of the way of the cadets.  I also make sure that I finish before Captain Campbell comes up.  Even though he loves to read, he would not want me to distract working cadets and crew members.  For example, he definitely wouldn't approve of this reading spot. 

I promise that I was only there for a second.  Really!

Little Buc with book on helm.

Reading below the sound-powered phone was cozy until a cadet accidentally kicked me.  

Little Buc below sound powered phone
Remind me to tell you about the sound-powered phone.  It is pretty cool!

This shelf in the charting area of the Bridge was out of the way of the activity.  Even Captain Campbell might approve of this reading spot.  Maybe!

Little Buc reading on a shelf
The plan behind me shows where all of the safety equipment is located on the ship.

Fearing that my time reading on the Bridge was up, I found a quiet spot on the Quarterdeck.  I snuggled up on the decorative magnetic compass.  That's when I ran into 1/C Kristopher Young from Newport Beah, California.  He is majoring in Marine Transportation and serving as one of four Safety Rates during Sea Term 2023Cadet Young was very excited that there are five schools from California participating in the Follow The Voyage-Share The Experience Program.  I told him that I was pretty sure that the second graders at Hancock Elementary School in San Diego and the second graders (and maybe even the third graders) at Miller Elementary School would be participating in my Buccaneer Book Club.  

LB on magnetic compass
This magnetic compass is on the Quarterdeck.  The Quarterdeck is probably similar to the lobby at the entrance to your school.

cadet reading book
You're never too old to enjoy a picture book - especially when it involves ships and island adventures.

You must be excited to hear, Shiver Me Letters: A Pirate ABC!  Settle back and enjoy the story.

Wasn't that a great story?  I bet that you are wishing that you could go on a letter treasure hunt just like the pirates.  

Well, I have a surprise for you.  You can!  I took the letters A - Z out on deck with me yesterday.

Here are all twenty-six lower case arranged on the TS Kennedy's additional anchor.  

letters A-Z on the extra anchor

Okay, this is where the hunting part comes in.  I took photos around the forward deck with twenty-five of the letters. 

That's right - just twenty-five.  I kept one letter hidden behind my back.  

Do you think that you will be able to figure out the missing letter?

Make a list of all twenty-six lower case letters.  Each time that you see a letter in my photos, cross it off your list.  When you get to the last photo, you should be able to figure out the letter that I have hidden behind my back.  

Are you ready?  This will be challenging!

Little Buc with letters
Here are the first four letters!  Notice I am not going in alphabetical order.  That would be too easy! 

Cross these four letters off your list.

Little Buc with letters
Here are five more!  This was a cozy spot to relax on a windy day.

Little Buc with letters
Three more letters!  Have you crossed all twelve letters off of your list?

Little Buc with letters
This would NOT be a safe place to sit when anchoring drills begin tomorrow.  Those are links of the anchor chain next to two more letters.

Little Buc with letters
My hunt became a science lesson when I discovered that my magnetic letters would stick here.  This makes 18 letters in all.  Have you crossed them all off your list?

What letters are you still waiting to see?  Which letter do you think that I have hidden behind my back?  

Little Buc with letters
Three more!  Are any of these letters in your first name?

Are you ready for the last three letters?  

Little Buc with letters
Here are my last three letters.  I was excited to discover that the Fire Station was magnetic too. you know which letter I have had hidden behind my back in all of these photos? 

Can you guess why I chose to hide this letter?

Little Buc
I can't keep it hidden any longer.

Here it is...

letter K behind Buc's back

I decided to hide the k for Kennedy!  

K circled on Kennedy

Get ready for my third Book Club on Tuesday, January 17th.  Since Monday is a holiday, I decided to hold our Book Club the following day.

We will read Ten Little Pirates by Mike Brownlow & Simon Rickerty.

Thanks for reading with me!  Remember, if you complete any activities related to Shiver Me Letters: A Pirate ABC, please ask your teacher to share some photos with me.  She can email the photos to

Your favorite book-loving pirate,

Little Buc