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Sea of Kings

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Thirteen-year-old Prince Noa has hated the ocean since the day it caused his mother's death. But staying away from the sea isn't easy on his tropical island home where he's stuck trying to keep up with his dim-witted and overconfident younger brother Dagan--the brawn to Noa's brains. When a vengeful pirate lays siege to their home, Noa and Dagan narrowly escape with their Thirteen-year-old Prince Noa has hated the ocean since the day it caused his mother's death. But staying away from the sea isn't easy on his tropical island home where he's stuck trying to keep up with his dim-witted and overconfident younger brother Dagan--the brawn to Noa's brains. When a vengeful pirate lays siege to their home, Noa and Dagan narrowly escape with their lives. Armed with a stolen ship, a haphazardly assembled crew, and a magical map that makes as much sense as slugs in a salt bath, the brothers set sail for the realm's other kingdoms in search of help. But navigating the sea proves deadlier than Noa's worst fears. To free his home, Noa must solve the map's confusing charts and confront the legendary one-eyed pirate before an evil force spreads across the realm and destroys the very people Noa means to protect.


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Thirteen-year-old Prince Noa has hated the ocean since the day it caused his mother's death. But staying away from the sea isn't easy on his tropical island home where he's stuck trying to keep up with his dim-witted and overconfident younger brother Dagan--the brawn to Noa's brains. When a vengeful pirate lays siege to their home, Noa and Dagan narrowly escape with their Thirteen-year-old Prince Noa has hated the ocean since the day it caused his mother's death. But staying away from the sea isn't easy on his tropical island home where he's stuck trying to keep up with his dim-witted and overconfident younger brother Dagan--the brawn to Noa's brains. When a vengeful pirate lays siege to their home, Noa and Dagan narrowly escape with their lives. Armed with a stolen ship, a haphazardly assembled crew, and a magical map that makes as much sense as slugs in a salt bath, the brothers set sail for the realm's other kingdoms in search of help. But navigating the sea proves deadlier than Noa's worst fears. To free his home, Noa must solve the map's confusing charts and confront the legendary one-eyed pirate before an evil force spreads across the realm and destroys the very people Noa means to protect.

30 review for Sea of Kings

  1. 4 out of 5

    Melissa Hope

    Sea of Kings has changed my life, and I may be a little biased, but it's one of my favorite books of all time. I hope you'll love it too! Sea of Kings has changed my life, and I may be a little biased, but it's one of my favorite books of all time. I hope you'll love it too!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Emma Pak

    From start to finish, Sea of Kings was incredible! As a middle school teacher for the last five years, I can say with confidence that this is a story that boys and girls will love. Here are some of my favourite parts of this book: - The story: I absolutely loved the gripping story. The concept and execution was incredibly engaging. This is the type of epic adventure I always looked for as a child and I cannot wait to share it with my own children. - The characters: the banter between the character From start to finish, Sea of Kings was incredible! As a middle school teacher for the last five years, I can say with confidence that this is a story that boys and girls will love. Here are some of my favourite parts of this book: - The story: I absolutely loved the gripping story. The concept and execution was incredibly engaging. This is the type of epic adventure I always looked for as a child and I cannot wait to share it with my own children. - The characters: the banter between the characters is laugh out loud hilarious. Noa and Dagan's relationship, in particular, is so relatable and is a perfect representation of brothers. - The writing style: the writing in this novel is so accessible. It really draws you in and keeps you wanting to read more. I longed to pick it back up whenever I had to stop reading. I highly recommend Sea of Kings and cannot wait to see what Melissa Hope comes up with next!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Wang

    There's never a dull moment in SEA OF KINGS, starting from when heir-to-the-throne Noa finds a skull in the first chapter to the thrilling teaser in the epilogue. I seriously could hear the "dun-dun-DUNNN!" sound effect in my head! This fast-paced, action-packed, humor-filled MG quest story has everything a kid could want--a magical map, a dim-witted brother (LOL), fantastical creatures, and plenty of secrets and intrigue. Although there are few girls among the cast, they are fierce and that's a There's never a dull moment in SEA OF KINGS, starting from when heir-to-the-throne Noa finds a skull in the first chapter to the thrilling teaser in the epilogue. I seriously could hear the "dun-dun-DUNNN!" sound effect in my head! This fast-paced, action-packed, humor-filled MG quest story has everything a kid could want--a magical map, a dim-witted brother (LOL), fantastical creatures, and plenty of secrets and intrigue. Although there are few girls among the cast, they are fierce and that's all that matters!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jessie Weaver

    When Prince Noa’s home is attacked by pirates, he must rely on a magical map, his sharp wits, and a ragtag crew of boys to save his kingdom. Packed to the brim with adventure, diverse settings, and Hope’s signature quirky humor, Sea of Kings is a swashbuckling middle grade adventure perfect for fans of Pirates of the Caribbean and The False Prince. Sea of Kings maintains a fast pace throughout. One thing I loved was that, even in the quieter moments, something is always brewing beneath the surfa When Prince Noa’s home is attacked by pirates, he must rely on a magical map, his sharp wits, and a ragtag crew of boys to save his kingdom. Packed to the brim with adventure, diverse settings, and Hope’s signature quirky humor, Sea of Kings is a swashbuckling middle grade adventure perfect for fans of Pirates of the Caribbean and The False Prince. Sea of Kings maintains a fast pace throughout. One thing I loved was that, even in the quieter moments, something is always brewing beneath the surface. Readers will connect the dots along with Prince Noa as he leverages his brains and books to protect his people from a mysterious one-eyed pirate. They’ll laugh with his lovable crew, cheer for them to succeed, and bite their nails as Noa orchestrates narrow escapes. After teaching middle school for seven years, I firmly believe that everyone likes to read if they find the right book. My middle school boys (girls too!) would love this one, and fry me a flounder, they might just find a new expression or two.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jolie Taylor

    If you want an epic adventure, you have found the right book! I loved reading Sea of Kings. I had the chance to beta read it in the earlier stages, and it was so much fun. Noa and Dagan’s brotherly interactions are relatable, funny, and endearing. The brothers team up with a group of kids and take on the high seas to follow a magical map, after a pirate takes over their kingdom. On their journey they discover magical creatures, danger, and the adventure of a lifetime. I loved reading this book, an If you want an epic adventure, you have found the right book! I loved reading Sea of Kings. I had the chance to beta read it in the earlier stages, and it was so much fun. Noa and Dagan’s brotherly interactions are relatable, funny, and endearing. The brothers team up with a group of kids and take on the high seas to follow a magical map, after a pirate takes over their kingdom. On their journey they discover magical creatures, danger, and the adventure of a lifetime. I loved reading this book, and I can’t wait to get my hands on a final copy. I’m so excited it is coming out this year. Hooray!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Alysa

    Prince Noa might be next in line to rule his Island kingdom, but he'd rather spend his days in the library reading. When the Island comes under attack, Noa has no choice but to set out on the sea with his brother and a band of other kids (some friends, and some foes) to get help from neighboring Island kingdoms. With a magical map to guide them, it should be a straightforward task. If only the map made any sense, and if their nemesis wasn't a diabolic one-eyed pirate! Now Noa must confront his fe Prince Noa might be next in line to rule his Island kingdom, but he'd rather spend his days in the library reading. When the Island comes under attack, Noa has no choice but to set out on the sea with his brother and a band of other kids (some friends, and some foes) to get help from neighboring Island kingdoms. With a magical map to guide them, it should be a straightforward task. If only the map made any sense, and if their nemesis wasn't a diabolic one-eyed pirate! Now Noa must confront his fears and embrace his real strenghts to help save his home. Oh, and figure out how to read this crazy map! An action-packed adventure complete with magic, evil pirates and a wry sense of humor, SEA OF KINGS is an exciting ride from start to finish! Perfect for readers who love epic adventures with a side of humor, hope and a good dose of magic! Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the E-Arc

  7. 4 out of 5

    Sam Subity

    I had so much fun reading Sea of Kings! With pirates, a magical map, and richly imagined underwater worlds, 12-year-old me was seriously digging this high-seas adventure. The interplay between the polar opposite brothers was spot on, and I really hope someone starts a league for the underwater version of capture the flag they play in the book because I'm definitely in! I had so much fun reading Sea of Kings! With pirates, a magical map, and richly imagined underwater worlds, 12-year-old me was seriously digging this high-seas adventure. The interplay between the polar opposite brothers was spot on, and I really hope someone starts a league for the underwater version of capture the flag they play in the book because I'm definitely in!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Caity

    This is a really gripping adventure story. I appreciated that it was fast paced but also gave a good amount of exposition and history as the mystery unfolded. You got a good overall sense of the history of the islands and enough more specific details to satisfy your curiosity without disrupting the narrative flow. I also really enjoyed the characters. The princes’ relationship was well done and I enjoyed that their group of friends kind of had a lost boys dynamic and brought a great balance of c This is a really gripping adventure story. I appreciated that it was fast paced but also gave a good amount of exposition and history as the mystery unfolded. You got a good overall sense of the history of the islands and enough more specific details to satisfy your curiosity without disrupting the narrative flow. I also really enjoyed the characters. The princes’ relationship was well done and I enjoyed that their group of friends kind of had a lost boys dynamic and brought a great balance of comic relief and serious concerns for their adventure. The one area that I think may be an issue for some readers is that the book does rely on a lot of adventure tropes which may bother some readers. That said I think they were done well and are a great example of why authors continue to use those elements. I particularly loved the way the magic map worked and overall appreciated how the magic was used throughout the book. I think this would be a great book for any middle grade reader looking for adventure.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Book Fantasy Utopia

    First off, this book surprised me a great deal. I don’t read middle grade as much as I’d like anymore and that dampened my excitement for this book. I began reading it though and I was swept off of my feet. I found myself falling in love witch characters I thought I wouldn’t. Noa was an amazing lead and you can see amazing character growth with him throughout the book. This book really stood out to me with its island and pirate atmosphere. It gave me some vibes that reminded me of The Unwanteds First off, this book surprised me a great deal. I don’t read middle grade as much as I’d like anymore and that dampened my excitement for this book. I began reading it though and I was swept off of my feet. I found myself falling in love witch characters I thought I wouldn’t. Noa was an amazing lead and you can see amazing character growth with him throughout the book. This book really stood out to me with its island and pirate atmosphere. It gave me some vibes that reminded me of The Unwanteds by Lisa McMann. What really made this book unique was the history that was so strongly infused about these islands and the battles. It’s something I’m not used to seeing so well executed. It didn’t interrupt the plot. It wasn’t just a giant info dump. It was strewn in throughout the story at perfectly placed times. The plot was very fast paced as there was always something going on, some obstacle in their way which I really liked. On top of that we were given an amazing cast of characters. Although it was a mostly male cast our few female characters were amazing and set themselves apart in such big ways. Overall I ended up giving this book 5 out of 5 stars. It was thrilling to read and I cannot wait for others to get to read this amazing book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Chad Lucas

    Sea of Kings is a swashbuckling adventure with an ocean of depth and heart. Readers will be drawn in by the swift-moving plot and well-crafted world, but what really hits home is the relatable family drama at the heart of the story. Noa and Dagan’s sibling rivalry feels authentic and sweet, and Noa’s complicated feelings toward his father, his grief, and his role in the family dynasty add an emotional punch to the action. Sea of Kings will appeal to readers of Peter and the Starcatchers and othe Sea of Kings is a swashbuckling adventure with an ocean of depth and heart. Readers will be drawn in by the swift-moving plot and well-crafted world, but what really hits home is the relatable family drama at the heart of the story. Noa and Dagan’s sibling rivalry feels authentic and sweet, and Noa’s complicated feelings toward his father, his grief, and his role in the family dynasty add an emotional punch to the action. Sea of Kings will appeal to readers of Peter and the Starcatchers and other high-seas adventures.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    Melissa Hope’s SEA OF KINGS is a high-seas adventure with heart and humor. When his island home is attacked, Noa must leave the comfort of his beloved books and head seaward to save his family’s kingdom. There’s a map to be deciphered, a brother to rescue, and ultimately a Death King to battle. The magic of the sea is on every page – a conch shell that allows you to listen in on faraway conversations, and glowing jellyfish as undersea lanterns, to name a few. Throughout, there is a message of fo Melissa Hope’s SEA OF KINGS is a high-seas adventure with heart and humor. When his island home is attacked, Noa must leave the comfort of his beloved books and head seaward to save his family’s kingdom. There’s a map to be deciphered, a brother to rescue, and ultimately a Death King to battle. The magic of the sea is on every page – a conch shell that allows you to listen in on faraway conversations, and glowing jellyfish as undersea lanterns, to name a few. Throughout, there is a message of forgiveness, not just for those you love, but for yourself. Young readers will adore this swashbuckling tale and will ask for more! Thanks to Jolly Fish Press and NetGalley for the eARC.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rosie Rizk

    When their castle is attacked, prince brothers Noa & Dagan and their friends hijack and flee on a pirate ship. Following a mysterious magical map given to him by the king, prince Noa and his crew of rambunctious young boys hope to find a way to save their island. Pirates, mythical water creatures, and sailing mishaps galore, a group of rowdy, young, and industrious boys must figure out how to sail their stolen ship, flee from pirates and soldiers, and survive on the high seas. When they discover When their castle is attacked, prince brothers Noa & Dagan and their friends hijack and flee on a pirate ship. Following a mysterious magical map given to him by the king, prince Noa and his crew of rambunctious young boys hope to find a way to save their island. Pirates, mythical water creatures, and sailing mishaps galore, a group of rowdy, young, and industrious boys must figure out how to sail their stolen ship, flee from pirates and soldiers, and survive on the high seas. When they discover that magic is real and meet up with unfriendly mythical creatures, their lives become even more interesting. There were too many characters among the young crew to be notable, but the story focused on Noa's perspective, and his relationship with his father, his brother, and his friends. Noa always enjoyed curling up with a good book, unlike his well liked rambunctious brother, who would be a better choice to inherit the throne, if Noa weren't the heir. On this journey, Noa will need to live outside his books, make tough decisions, and lead his young crew to safety. This is a great high seas adventure for middle grade and older readers. I received a copy in exchange for an honest review.

  13. 4 out of 5

    JV

    ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Two princes and their crew, one magical map, and a stolen pirate ship, sailing to an unknown island to save their island from pirates and an unknown entity. Wow, this was actually a really fun read. Dagan and Bones are my favorite in the book, they were too funny hahahha, but of course, Noa, my fellow book nerd is the most relatable for me. It was a bit slow at first for me but once mythological creatures started appearing, that started catching my attention. I kinda wish the book was mor ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Two princes and their crew, one magical map, and a stolen pirate ship, sailing to an unknown island to save their island from pirates and an unknown entity. Wow, this was actually a really fun read. Dagan and Bones are my favorite in the book, they were too funny hahahha, but of course, Noa, my fellow book nerd is the most relatable for me. It was a bit slow at first for me but once mythological creatures started appearing, that started catching my attention. I kinda wish the book was more diverse since there was a lot of characters in the book and I felt like there was room to have some intersectional identities in there, but that’s just me, and I just imagined the crew as being diverse characters personally. I also kinda wish there were more female characters, but the main three female characters are all amazing and I love how the author lets each character even the crew have a moment to shine in the book. I love the yearning/romance on the side too, it’s cute. And I really enjoyed the mutual respect and second found family that grew amongst the crew and Noa as the story progress. Also, there’s a little surprise towards the end of Sea of Kings that took me by surprise. I can’t wait for the next book and read where the next part of this story is leading to. If you like reading sea adventures, pirates, mythological creatures, and a fun and quirky crew with two princes, then go and preorder/buy this book! Thank you Jolly Fish Press and Netgalley for providing me an eARC of Sea of Kings in exchange for an honest review.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jessica Froberg

    I really enjoyed the adventure I went on in this book! We start off with the two main characters, Noa and Dagan, brothers and princes of their island. After danger comes to their island, they gather together a group of kids to sail a boat to save their island, and possibly their entire world. Pirates, hidden ocean dangers, maps, and secret islands dot their travels to save their home and each other. One of the biggest things that shine in the Sea of Kings is the brother relationship. I loved the I really enjoyed the adventure I went on in this book! We start off with the two main characters, Noa and Dagan, brothers and princes of their island. After danger comes to their island, they gather together a group of kids to sail a boat to save their island, and possibly their entire world. Pirates, hidden ocean dangers, maps, and secret islands dot their travels to save their home and each other. One of the biggest things that shine in the Sea of Kings is the brother relationship. I loved their banter and found them funny and endearing as they antagonized each other to no end. The twists and turns of the book are well laid out, clues are strewn along the way that are enticing but not too much of a giveaway. While the book did have a bit of a slow start, it did plenty in the middle and end to make me feel like I went on an adventure with the characters. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca Thorne

    It took too long to fit into my schedule, but once I sat down, I plowed through this exciting seafaring novel! Ever since Pirates of the Caribbean, swashbuckling adventurers have been a staple of my must-reads, but Sea of Kings conquered the oceans! Noa, the hesitant, bookish main character, is yanked off his dynamic island-kingdom when a family friend turns traitor. He partners with his younger brother, the bold yet impulsive Dagan and a few other kids from the island on a seafaring journey fol It took too long to fit into my schedule, but once I sat down, I plowed through this exciting seafaring novel! Ever since Pirates of the Caribbean, swashbuckling adventurers have been a staple of my must-reads, but Sea of Kings conquered the oceans! Noa, the hesitant, bookish main character, is yanked off his dynamic island-kingdom when a family friend turns traitor. He partners with his younger brother, the bold yet impulsive Dagan and a few other kids from the island on a seafaring journey following a mysterious map--the only thing that can save their kingdom. Every destination is more intricate and engaging than the last, and it makes for a fast, enjoyable read. Hope's writing brims with fun dialogue, fantastic worldbuilding, and amazing characters. There's something for every kid to enjoy in this wonderful story of friendship and forgiveness.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Adam

    This is a fast-paced adventure story full of twists and turns that will delight young readers. The relationship between Noa and his brother Dagan is so believable - they tussle and tease, but their loyalty to each other is heartwarming. Their crew of fellow youngsters is charmingly chaotic but brave in the ways that matter. I thoroughly enjoyed the quick action and intriguing sense of mystery, and I found the sly humor a perfect balance to the lurking threat of danger. The vivid descriptions of This is a fast-paced adventure story full of twists and turns that will delight young readers. The relationship between Noa and his brother Dagan is so believable - they tussle and tease, but their loyalty to each other is heartwarming. Their crew of fellow youngsters is charmingly chaotic but brave in the ways that matter. I thoroughly enjoyed the quick action and intriguing sense of mystery, and I found the sly humor a perfect balance to the lurking threat of danger. The vivid descriptions of the islands and the sea made me long for sunny summer days on the beach! If you're looking for a quick pirate adventure complete with a magical map, a mysterious king, strange sea creatures, a girl who trains dolphins (I wish we could have seen more of her!!), and a young prince with the power to save his island kingdom, this is the book for you.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Alina

    Betrayed by their closest friend and surrounded by Pirates, the people of Ondule have nowhere to go. Their only hope lies on the shoulders of the young crew who must use their brawn and wits to trick the Pirates and get help. The first few chapters didn't hold my attention for long but it got more interesting as the story moved forward. It was refreshing to see kids act like kids for a change instead of knowing everything just to make them look more intelligent. Melissa invested a lot of time in th Betrayed by their closest friend and surrounded by Pirates, the people of Ondule have nowhere to go. Their only hope lies on the shoulders of the young crew who must use their brawn and wits to trick the Pirates and get help. The first few chapters didn't hold my attention for long but it got more interesting as the story moved forward. It was refreshing to see kids act like kids for a change instead of knowing everything just to make them look more intelligent. Melissa invested a lot of time in the story and it shows by how well woven it felt. The twists near the end of the book blew my mind and creeped me out at the same time. I would've enjoyed it more if it had more magic but the discovery of magic and adventure of the high sea with the crew was way too pure to not be enough on its own. Note:- I received a free eArc in exchange of an honest review.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    Middle graders will absolutely love this. A spell-binding adventure expertly told with the things dreams are made of: pirates, a band of school chums, danger, evil villains, and a touch of magic. Embedded subtly are some valuable life lessons, e.g., bookish nerds can be invaluable friends; choices are not always easy—doing the right thing versus the doing the easy thing; judging people without knowing their circumstances is fraught with risk; and reconciliation of differences with friends/parents Middle graders will absolutely love this. A spell-binding adventure expertly told with the things dreams are made of: pirates, a band of school chums, danger, evil villains, and a touch of magic. Embedded subtly are some valuable life lessons, e.g., bookish nerds can be invaluable friends; choices are not always easy—doing the right thing versus the doing the easy thing; judging people without knowing their circumstances is fraught with risk; and reconciliation of differences with friends/parents should be done sooner rather than later. A page turner, with a beautifully constructed sequel ending.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Emma

    I recieved a free copy of this book via edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. I really enjoy this book, the brothers were very loyal to each other, even if they were very different. The action was fun and descriptive. A little bit over the top at times but in a nice fun way. I think alot youngsters will love reading this book about pirates and adventures. I adored the ending.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Vitalis

    A reluctant (book'ish) hero, an epic adventure, a magical map, and plenty of mystery to go along with it all ... this book is fun and fast-paced and captured me from page one all the way through to the conclusion. A reluctant (book'ish) hero, an epic adventure, a magical map, and plenty of mystery to go along with it all ... this book is fun and fast-paced and captured me from page one all the way through to the conclusion.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Fern C.

    This is a cool book from a small press. Really enjoyed it.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kathie

    Review to follow

  23. 4 out of 5

    Olivia Chadha

  24. 5 out of 5

    Anuradha Rajurkar

  25. 4 out of 5

    Flux Books

  26. 5 out of 5

    Claire

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lori Kaufmann

  28. 4 out of 5

    Payal Doshi

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kelsy

  30. 5 out of 5

    Crystal Maldonado

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