Isle of Swords

Our rating: ****½

It all starts when Declan Ross, captain of the William Wallace, and his headstrong daughter Anne take on a badly injured boy who has no memory of his previous life. As time goes on, the truth about a great treasure, long believed lost, is revealed. Hidden by a mysterious order of monks, this treasure must be reclaimed—and Declan Ross is the one to do it. Perilous dangers await in the journey, and Bartholomew Thorne, the most dreaded pirate on the high seas, is determined to find the treasure first. So begins a deadly race to the Isle of Swords with more at stake than first meets the eye.

Despite a few flaws, I was quite impressed with this book. A great page-turner, memorable characters, and many intricate subplots. I debated whether to mark this for ages 13+, like the other Wayne Thomas Batson books we’ve reviewed, or to bump it up to 15+. I will leave it at 13+ with a warning: Bartholomew Thorne is not a nice fellow, and he does not treat his prisoners kindly. Nothing was overly vivid, but it had me grimacing on several occasions. So do take that into consideration.
Also, I was under the impression that Isle of Swords was a stand-alone book. Be forewarned! I raced through the climax right to the end where the story is left at a cliffhanger. While the main plot is resolved, many mysterious puzzles are left unsolved. All that to say, I’ll be watching for Isle of Fire, the sequel.

41 Responses to “Isle of Swords”

  1. Is there a sequel to this book,? What happend to thorn? I NEED to know!!!!

  2. I believe that the sequel Isle of Fire is still being written. You can always search around the author’s site to learn more.

  3. There absolutely is a sequel. Isle of Fire should be out late spring 2008.

    Thanks for the kind words!

    -Wayne Thomas Batson

  4. This book was awsome. I couldn’t put it down. What happens to everyone?? What happens to Thorn?? I need to know!!
    Is there a sequal?? I need answers, its driving me crazy not knowing.

    Thank You for reading this. Please Reply.

  5. Yes, Shandra, there is a sequel! Seems to be the most popular question! :-) Isle of Fire will be published late spring of this year. Edit: It looks like the publishing date has been bumped back to August, 2008.

  6. Well, the sequel is going to come out, but it seems he is having a hard time with the title. he said maybe torrent of fire.

  7. Heyyyyyy!!!! Im back!!!!!!!!! Y has the sequel not come out yet????

  8. Hey all my peeps!!! Why hasn’t the second book come out?? I loved the first one! Or has it come out yet?

  9. According to Wayne Thomas Batson, Isle of Fire is available for pre-order on Amazon. It will be released in August of this year.

    Wayne Thomas Batson was kind enough to offer a signed copy of Isle of Fire as a prize for our Incredibooks Summer Read-a-Thon. You might want to check it out.

  10. Not to spoil the new book, (i’m not even sure this is IN the new book) but when Sir Nigel excuses himself from the meeting, he goes and helps thorne escape. Earlier, Nigel is revealed as scully’s leak in the british navy

  11. I fell in love with this book from the first sentence. I’ve read it three times and will read it again in order to prepare for Isle of Fire. I adore the whole “pirate genre”, but it’s so hard these days to find something clean and well-written in that area. Wayne Thomas Batson more than delivered a book I could read without cringing, and still not put down. So intense it made me jump… So vivid it made me see what was going on like a movie in my head… So emotional it made me cry. Please read it, you won’t be disappointed.

  12. Isle of Swords is a great pirate novel, one of the best I’ve seen in a while. It is a fast-moving storyline, so prepare yourself for a wild ride.

  13. This book is so good I loved it I read it all in one day because I could put the book down it just caught my attention. This is a spectacular tale of the high seas, coming of age, and courage. The main characters are pirates. A young boy wakes up to the waves crashing with the question what to do? He does not remember a thing of his past? Find out what happens to this boy…

  14. I loved Isle of Swords! I can’t wait for Isle of Fire to come out! Speaking of which, there’s a “treasure hunt” with tons of prizes at Mr. B’s blog, Check it out!

  15. Isle of Swords is an amazing book written by the mastermind author Wayne Thomas Batson. It’s about pirates, a topic that I have found to be handled strangely in other books, but the author weaves a believable but still spellbinding tale. I love the spirituality in this book, as well. It isn’t too in-your-face but can be greatly appreciated by believers, and unbelievers might get curious about God. It doesn’t justify the horrible acts of pirates, which I have found to be a problem elsewhere, and doesn’t have objectionable content besides some violence which is not explicit. This book is great for about middle school students to adults.

  16. Isle of Swords

    Wow! I first picked this book up back in Borders in Illinois with no idea that Mr. Batson was a Christian author. What an awesome story that had lead to so many questions.

    The story begins with our future hero awakening on an island with no memory of who he is and how he got there. He is beaten and bruised. The only thing he has for information is a pouch that holds a shock of hair, a small cross, and a large green jewel. What a great time to write about Pirates, when so much attention is being paid to those who ruled the high seas. In the likes of Pirates of the Carribean, another great story interweaving aspects of Christianity into a world of excitement and adventure. I can not wait for the sequel to hit bookstore shelves.

  17. Isle of Swords was a suspenseful novel that kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time. The story begins with a lad of about 17, horribly injured and alone, wakening on an island with no reccollection of who he is or how he arrived there. He is rescued by fiery Anne Ross, who longs to be a pirate like her father, Captain Declan Ross of the William Wallace. With the ruthless Captain Thorne chasing them down, the crew of the Wallace sails to an island home to a special order of monks. They are given a map to perhaps the greatest treasure the world has ever known. But Thorne wants the treasure as well, and will do anything to get it.

  18. This book is simply a masterpiece!

  19. Isle of Swords is a remarkable book that takes you on a journey through the high seas with excitement at every turn. With adventure at your side and an outstanding, unforgettable plot, you’ll be thrust into a book that you won’t want to put down!

  20. Isle of Swords is the best pirate adventure I have ever read!
    Mr.Batson is a terrific story teller!
    Even from the first page, I was tossed into the high seas. With excitment and mystery in every page, you will not be able to put this story down!

  21. Unlike many other pirate stories, The Isle of Swords is a book about a pirate who is good-hearted in nature. While piracy is, in nature, stealing, thievery, and malevolence, DeClan Ross goes about it with class and dignity. He hunts to support his family and he never takes another man’s ship (although sinking it in the midst of battle is not beneath him). It might seem funny to say, to one never having read the book, but DeClan is a pirate of integrity, who is likeable and a great father to his daughter, Anne. The struggle of watching his daughter grow is as plainly evident for him as it is for all of us daddies who have or are watching our daughters become young women. The battles into which he leads his crew, and the cunning defense of his ship against The Butcher, are fast, furious, and wild. The adventure rarely stops in this action-packed story.

    As such, the female protagonists, Anne, is a spunky teen who always seems to feel as if she has something to prove…whether she needs to prove it to herself or to her crewmates is not entirely made clear, but that is what makes it easy to identify with her. There are lots of young people who aren’t sure for whom they are living, or what they are representing by their daily actions. Anne’s character will go a long way in helping youths, especially girls, with the struggle to find an identity of their own. I have a feeling that as the series progresses, we will see Anne become a force to be reckoned with in her own right.

    Spiritually, there are two very strong points to the book. While there are several lessons to be learned about the basics of faith, and all that, Padre Dominguez will leave a lasting impression on anyone who reads the book. He’s tough, yet compassionate. He’s aloof, yet involved. And most importantly, he teaches the Scriptures by simply living his life. He is one of my favorite characters in literature. The second lesson, and one that is much more broad in its delivery, is the example that not everyone learns or accepts Faith in the same way. There are no mass conversions in the story, but a subtle seasoning of people pondering what Dominguez speaks about. The seed is planted in the characters of the book and between the lines you can see it start to grow roots. This message is amongst the most important in the book as it is The Great Commission in the essence of what Faithful are called to do.

    Age recommendations:
    Children reading the book alone: 12 years
    Children reading with a parent: 9 years

    Faith affirming/spiritual message (1-10):
    8 – This book sends a clear message about the important of strong character. There is a clear mission that the must be undertaken and the stakes of it test the limits of the individuals’ faith.

    Overall Rating (1-10 scale):
    10 – Well-written pirate stories written in modern pen are few and far between. Pirate stories that support spiritual growth and challenge the reader to examine themselves as the characters do are next-to-impossible to find. With the thrilling adventures set forth within, the book is a great read.

    Would you find this in my personal library?
    ABSOLUTELY! It has a permanent place in my bookshelf.

    Would you find this in my classroom library?
    Yes. Children of all ages will find this book addicting and enjoyable. It is a well-spun yarn that challenges readers on many different levels.

  22. Isle of Swords, the first book in Wayne Thomas Batson’s new series, is less fantastical than the Door Within trilogy, but a brilliant book nonetheless. This book will appeal to readers will love action and pirate books. I personally like this book better than the Door Within trilogy because Batson’s style has matured since his debut. Batson has created another fascinating world in this series, and I can’t wait for the next book to be released!

  23. Declan Ross, the “good” pirate. Bartholomew Thorne, the “bad” pirate.
    Ross and his daughter Anne take on a kid who is badly injured and has no memory of a past that may hold clues to finding a treasure, or maybe something more?? There’s a great deal of exciting chase, deception, pirates,mystery, treasures and great internal stories about a father and the frightening event of watching his teenage daughter grow up, a mysterious teenage boy with a history which is a mystery to himself, a bloodthirsty pirate who will do anything to get his hands on this treasure… above all a great story for kids, teens, or adults who haven’t lost the kid inside or who just like good adventure stories.

  24. Here’s what I thought of this book:

    Mr. Batson, with his simple, yet fast-paced writing style, knows how to spin an amazing tale! Whipped half to death, a teen wakes on an island with no memory of who he is and how he got there. A pouch he clutches holds a shock of hair, a small cross, and a rare green diamond pirates would kill for (and do). Declan Ross, captain of the Wallace, and later the Bruce (and what a battle it was!), wants to free himself and his somewhat annoying and headstrong daughter Anne from the piracy business forever. But when he crosses with the notorious, blood-thirsty pirate Bartholomew Thorne, things get ugly for him and a friendly order of monks… who hold the last (um… maybe not) map to the long lost treasure of Constantine located on the volcanic Isle of Swords. 115% percent, absolutely incredible!

  25. Bloodthirsty pirates. Buried treasure. Mysterious monks. Hidden islands. Daring escapes. Perilous searches. All these things and more are found in “The Isle of Swords.” As Captain Declan Ross tries to discover a way to leave piracy behind, his daughter tries to persuade him to let her join the crew and his newest deckhand tries to recover his memory. A strange monk offers Captain Ross his chance to escape piracy if he will grant him passage to an island no one has seen. But the ruthless Captain Bartholomew Thorne also wants the treasure and will do anything to get his hands on the map now in Captain Ross’ possession.

    I had a little trouble at first with the manner in which Batson constantly shifts the point-of-view from which the story is being told. Hearing from half a dozen different characters who I barely knew was a bit confusing and frustrating. However, as the story progressed, I quickly lost sight of the point-of-view changes and lost myself in the story.

    “The Isle of Swords” is first and foremost an action and adventure story populated with memorably quirky characters. Secondly, it is a tale of what is really important in life—not the adventure, but those family and friends who share it with us. The message is smoothly interwoven into the story with the same skill Batson has shown in his Door Within trilogy. Nearly every reader should be enthralled by this fast-paced story set on the high seas.

  26. Hey! Im back! Y’ know the one who made the first comment on this page… I haven’t heard anything about book 2… Is it even out? PLZ RPLY I NEED TO KNOW

  27. Yes, book two is now out! You can find it here:

  28. Join Captain Declan Ross and his faithful crew as they sail the high seas. You will meet mysterious monks, murdering pirates, and a lad with no memory. But beware of the evil villain Bartholomew Thorne who seeks to find and destroy Captain Ross. As good and evil clash, which will prevail? This book will exceed your highest expectations to those who love adventure. To find out more, buy the book and read it!

  29. This is an excellent book and it definitely ranks among my top ten.

    The story is fabulous. The book is stuffed with humor, unique and endearing characters, acres of peril, and the whole thing is saturated in mystery. Secrets shroud the tale. However, the author meters out the answers to those secrets carefully, just enough at a time to satisfy the reader and make him/her come back for more. I have never read books that do this so well. I highly, highly recommend Isle of Swords.

    Sea monsters, standoffs, pirates, explosions, escapes, duels, incredible treasure and monkeys. I can almost guarantee that this book will be unlike anything you have ever read before.

  30. A teenager wakes up on an abandoned island,cruelly injured with no memory of himself or where he came from. Could the rare jewel he finds himself clutching be the key to his identity?

  31. I picked up this book skeptical of pirate books that claimed to be Christian, but I was proved wrong. Captain Jack Ross his crew, and his feisty daughter, Anne, are thrown into an adventure and quest to acquire a wonderful treasure hidden by monks. With shipwrecks, an evil pirate, adventures on the high seas, and a great Christian message, this book is a great read for fiction lovers. I loved this book with it’s characters full of personalities and the adventures of pirates. It weaves the story in a way that keeps you turning the pages. Anne Ross is one of my few very favorite female characters of all time. I love her spirit, courage, and strength. Truly inspiring, not to mention a swashbuckling adventure!

  32. Here is an Reveiw on the Isle of Swords by Wayn thomas Batson. Enjoy!

    A sea storm and mysterious boy with no memory is how Batson launches the story. With relatively short chapters, the story flows very nicely as we are introduced to Anne and Declan. While Declan is a pirate, he still has honor – he is true to his crew and does not kill. What he really wants; however, is to put the life of piracy behind him. A chance run in with the notorious pirate Bartholemew Thorne may put him on the course to a less larcenous life. After Ross engages one of Thorne’s lieutenants in a sea battle, he ends up on island which may hold the map to a treasure which will allow Ross to be free of piracy. Unfortunately, Thorne is hot on his heels and soon tries to find his way towards this Holy Grail of a treasure.

    While the thought of two pirates hunting for the same treasure may prove fertile enough ground for a good swashbuckler, Batson plants more seeds. Ross’s daughter Anne plays the role of headstrong plucky youth who won’t listen to her father. Yes this might be a clichéd character type but Batson makes these things work very well in his favor. Anne’s headstrong nature is further complicated by the mysterious young man her father and crew find washed ashore; a young boy they come to call Cat. Anne and Cat make a nice duo and young readers in particular will probably find themselves sailing along with both or either character as the story moves along.

    Cat knows very little of his past and Batson reveals hints over the course of the story bit by bit. This mystery is part of what makes him an intriguing character. That and the strange voices he hears directing him provide a larger cloud of mystery. What works all the more in the favor of both the character and the story is that readers learn about Cat just as Cat learns about himself.

  33. This is a wonderful example of pirate fiction. Declan Ross, captain of the William Wallace, must venture out and cross swords with the infamous pirate, Bartholomew Thorne, over the treasure of Constantine, the biggest treasure ever to cross the earth. But, the mysterious Isle of Swords is both difficult to find, and difficult to navigate. The Isle of Swords is not located on any map. Huge and treacherous waves protect it, and even past the waves, dangers lurk. Cross currents circle the island, leading searching ships in completely the wrong direction, without them knowing. Even past that, there are dangers. Sharp coral spears stick out of the water, completely surrounding the isle, with only one path through it. And after that, the visitor must dive through shark and sea monster-infested water to receive a key incased in stone, and travel through caves full of flesh-eating bats; unless, of course, you had a bucket of monkey pee ready. But even with all of the obstacles, will the fabled treasure of Constantine, which is more than gold and jewels, still be safe?

  34. A boy who has lost his memory awakens on an unknown isle with a green diamond, a lock of hair and a silver cross. Does he have anything to do with infamous pirate Bartholomew Thorne?

    Anne is annoyed with her father Declan Ross, the captain, for cooping her up. After all, isn’t she as good as or better at pirate activities than the crew? Will her life ever get interesting?

    Captain Declan Ross attempts to satisfy his loyal, but starving crew. Does Bartholomew hate him enough to search the seas to find him? Does the famous Saint Constantine’s Treasure really exist and does the path to it lie with the monks that he has known for so long?

    Bartholomew Thorne wants to find the treasure of Saint Constantine, but has his son survived being left on an island?


    In The Isle of Swords by Wayne Thomas Batson, all of their separate tales come together in an action-packed, piratical adventure.

  35. Anne Ross, while gathering food finds a boy who doesn’t remember his past or his name.
    He claims to not be a pirate but yet has all of the skills required to be one, with the few possessions he has will he be able to help Captain Declan Ross find the treasure to free the captain from piracy forever?

  36. Wayne Thomas Batson is back with another of his action-filled books! Filled with keep-you-on-the-edge-of-your-seat action, his regular humor, and a good lesson to live by, this book is a must for readers of good fiction!

  37. Captain Declan Ross is stuck in the Sweet Trade. He searches for the treasure that can get him out, but his daughter Anne loves it and wants to captain her own ship. When they find a young man named Cat who has lost his memories stranded on an island, he becomes invaluable aid in the search of the hidden treasure of a band of priests. Declan is not the only one searching for it, however. The ruthless Bartholomew Thorne is also after the treasure.

  38. Isles of Swords (the first book in the series) is a thrilling pirate novel and is very fast moving (just what I like). :-P
    I personally would recommend it for 10 and on up because it does have some language and it has some kind of gross content. (btw, I said that because I got scared by it when I first had it read to me because I was 7 years old)
    (I’m 9 now) :-)  But it is really up to the parents. (my thing was just a suggestion) :-)
    Anyway back to the book, lol
    The basic goal of the book is to get some treasure hidden on a secret island.
    My favorite characters are Ann and Cat. Ann is Captain Declan Ross’s daughter and has red hair, is really bold,
    She loved her dad but was kind of in rebellion, she wanted to be a pirate but her dad didn’t want her to be.
    Cat is a unknown character until some time at the end of the book, Ann had found him lying on a island and it was obvious that he had had a horrible whipping and he was almost dead and so I haven’t read the book in quite a while so i don’t quite know what happens then but you get the basic idea. :-P

  39. Wayne Thomas Batson originally wrote a hit series that mixed medieval and modern, I’ve read it, it’s awesome. but PIRATES!? Great book Wayne!

  40. Is there a sighnificance with the female character having red hair? Anne-red hair Cat’s mother-red hair Antoinette Lynn Reed(the door within trilogy)- red hair

  41. I think Mr. Batson just likes red hair. :-P

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