Treasure Island: Runaway Gold (Hardcover)

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Treasure Island: Runaway Gold By Jewell Parker Rhodes Cover Image
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Staff Reviews

Zane feels free on his skateboard, sailing through Queens with his dog named Hip-Hop at his side. He’s got his friends from the skatepark, his mom, and his house, but it’s hard because his dad died and now his mom takes in elderly boarders to make ends meet. One of them insists that she’s Captain Maddie, and she’s either got a world of past experience on the seven seas, or she’s just whacked-out crazy. She talks about a treasure that needs protection. Still, she likes Zane, and somehow, he trusts her. So maybe it’s true that pirates are coming for them. Rhodes imagined updating Treasure Island in today’s New York City, wrapping in Manhattan’s stunning maritime history and the brutal side of its checkered past. It worked! She’s a natural storyteller. It’s a very intense, suspenseful story with great characters. Zane is told to “set sail” on a dangerous journey through a bustling city. His crew of friends and his loyal dog help him search for treasure to save his home, with his board as his ship and the city as his sea!

— Tim McCarthy


Bestselling and award-winning author Jewell Parker Rhodes reimagines the classic novel Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson in this thrilling adventure set in modern-day Manhattan, in which three children must navigate the city’s hidden history, dodge a threatening crew of skater kids, and decide who they can really trust in order to hunt down a long-buried treasure. 

Three kids. One dog. And the island of Manhattan, laid out in an old treasure map.

Zane is itching for an adventure that will take him away from his family’s boarding house in Rockaway, Queens. So when he is entrusted with a real treasure map, leading to a spot somewhere in Manhattan, Zane wastes no time in riding the ferry over to the city to start the search with his friends Kiko and Jack and his dog, Hip-Hop.

Through strange coincidence, they meet a man who is eager to help them find the treasure: John, a sailor who knows all about the buried history of Black New Yorkers of centuries past—and the gold that is hidden somewhere in those stories.

As a vicious rival skateboard crew follows them around the city, Zane and his friends begin to wonder who they can really trust. And soon it becomes clear that treasure hunting is a dangerous business…

Jewell Parker Rhodes has written a version of Treasure Island like none you’ve never seen—one that takes the reader through little-known Black history, and under the city of Manhattan itself. 

About the Author

Dr. Jewell Parker Rhodes is the author of six adult novels: Voodoo Dreams, Magic City, Douglass’ Women, Season, Moon, and Hurricane, as well as the memoir Porch Stories: A Grandmother’s Guide to Happiness and two writing guides, Free within Ourselves: Fiction Lessons for Black Authors and The African American Guide to Writing and Publishing Nonfiction. Jewell is also the author of seven books for youth, including the New York Times bestsellers Ghost Boys and Black Brother, Black Brother. She has won the American Book Award, the Black Caucus of the American Library Award for Literary Excellence, and the Jane Addams Peace Association Book Award. Jewell is the founding artistic director of the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing and narrative studies professor and Virginia G. Piper endowed chair at Arizona State University. She was awarded an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Carnegie-Mellon University. She lives in Seattle, Washington.

Praise For…

"Whether or not readers are familiar with Robert Louis Stevenson’s original, they’ll be drawn into this accessible, action-packed adventure, full of mysteries, pirates, skateboard drama, and a whole new underground world. The artful, verse-like sentence structures intentionally and effectively evoke the “resonance and rhythm of the African American oral tradition. Daringly honors old heroes, stunningly integrating past and present with pitch-perfect success." — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"In this contemporary spin on Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island, Rhodes employs lush descriptive language and engaging dialogue teeming with historical facts, and crafts a sincere protagonist whose compassion for others radiates from the pages of this high-octane romp." — Publishers Weekly

Product Details
ISBN: 9780062998354
ISBN-10: 0062998358
Publisher: Quill Tree Books
Publication Date: October 3rd, 2023
Pages: 336
Language: English