24 June 2022

Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. Shorr, Illustrated by Joshua Edelglass Book Tour and Guest Review!

Jose and the Pirate Captain by Arnon Z. Shorr

Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. Shorr, Illustrated by Joshua Edelglass’

Publisher: Kar-Ben Publishing, May 1, 2022
Category: Children’s Graphic Novels, Pirates, Action Adventure, Jewish, Children’s Prejudice and Racism
Tour dates: May 2-June 30, 2021
ISBN: 978-1728420097
Available in Print and ebook, 96 pages

Jose and the Pirate Captain

Description Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. Shorr, Illustrated by Joshua Edelglass’

Set in the shadows of the Spanish Inquisition, this is the coming-of-age story of José Alfaro, a young refugee who forms a powerful bond with the mysterious Pirate Captain Toledano. It’s also a dynamic pirate adventure on the high seas, with hand-to-hand combat and ship-to-ship action, and the powerful story of a dark time in history when people took different paths to survive.

José Alfaro is a cocky, rambunctious teen in the 16th-century colony of Santo Domingo, pulling pranks and dodging the authorities. One day, José’s mischief lands him in serious trouble.

Hoping for a fresh start, he stows away on the Laqish, not knowing that it’s a pirate ship. From his hiding place, he watches the pirates divide their loot and plan their attacks on long days at sea. He also takes note of the respect they have for their captain, the intimidating Toledano.

But the captain has a secret―like José, he is a Jew. For him, piracy is not about the gold; it has a different purpose.

Under the tutelage of the ship’s quartermaster, José learns the intricacies of pirate life. But when he can, the captain finds ways to pull José away from the crew, to teach him about his ancestors.

View Trailer Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. Shorr

Review Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. 

Guest Review by Laura

“We are sailing towards danger, so sharpen your blades and swallow your pride.” – Captain Toledano.

A rip-roaring adventure on the high seas! 'Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano,' by Arnon Z. Shorr and illustrated by Joshua M. Edelglass is exactly the kind of graphic novel that sucks you in and whisks you away until the very last page! Shorr and Edelglass have created a wonderful story with beautiful visuals that ensnare the reader and make you feel as if you are experiencing everything with the characters.

This is a story about justice, loyalty and family relationships and each beat is perfectly done. The main character of the story, a young man named Jose Alfaro. He begins the story as a carefree teenager whose biggest problem is being bullied by his peers for his intelligence.

Soon enough, however, Jose's word is turned upside down when his father reveals to him that his late mother was Jewish. Jose's father, Señor Alfaro kept this knowledge from his son in order to protect him from the Spanish Inquisition which has taken over their colony of San Domingo.

However, Señor Alfaro is soon arrested by the head Inquisitor, a man named De Guzman. Jose escapes being arrested himself and goes to the harbor, stowing away on a pirate ship called the Laqish. When he is found, Jose is nearly thrown overboard into the ocean. But the captain, Toledano, decides to take Jose under his wing.

This is a move that is questioned by both Jose and the crew of the ship. But soon it is revealed that Toledano is a Jewish man, himself, and he wishes to teach Jose the ways of their religion. Jose spends many months on the ship, but soon they discover that they are able to return to San Domingo and possibly rescue Señor Alfaro. But, of course, things do not go as planned, and the crew of the Laqish must figure out how to get justice for Jose, and discover some things about themselves along the way. This is an epic read!

Guest Post by Joshua M. Edelglass

Comics Collaboration

As an artist, there’s definitely a “control freak” aspect of my personality.  I like things the way I like them.  When I have a vision for a project, there’s a part of me that wants to try to bring that vision to life undiluted, exactly how it was in my mind.

But over and over again in my career, I’ve seen that a successful collaboration can be magical.  When different artists work together and are in sync, the work they create together can transcend anything they might have been able to do individually.

This was absolutely the case in working with author and filmmaker Arnon Z. Shorr on our graphic novel José and the Pirate Captain Toledano.

 Arnon and I were able to set up a working relationship, right from the beginning, in which we were able to be open and honest with one another.  We could communicate openly; we could tell one another what we thought; we could ask questions and give feedback on each other’s work.  This is not the easiest thing to do!  Everyone wants to be liked, and I think we’d all prefer to hear praise as opposed to criticism.  It requires a certain amount of vulnerability and openness to be able to solicit and listen to feedback. 

Arnon and I were able to, in a gentle and supportive way, push one another.  As Arnon worked on the script for our graphic novel, I had an opportunity to review his drafts.  I was able to bring my artist’s eye and make suggestions as to how the story might best flow from page to page.  Maybe this scene needs a little more space to breathe, and we should extend it onto the next page?  Maybe this other scene could be consolidated so we could get this point across in just one panel instead of three?

Then, when I started illustrating the pages, the tables were turned.  I’d send the pages to Arnon and he was able to bring his writer/storyteller eye to my work.  He would let me know if the action I’d drawn in a panel was unclear, or if a character’s expression wasn’t quite capturing the emotion he felt was needed in that moment.

The result was that, at every step in the process, we each pushed one another to be better, which in turn made the final project better. 

What were some of the keys to our collaboration?

First, we talked openly with one another right at the beginning of the project about how we wanted to work together.  It was very helpful to set the tone, and to be able to be explicit and clear with one another about how we could best communicate.  When collaborators have regular channels of open communication, that makes it much easier if there’s ever a problem or a difference of opinion.  If you’re not used to communicating when things are good, it’s much harder to communicate when there’s a problem.

When giving feedback, we were each careful not to only give negative feedback.  We were each open with praise when the other’s work made us happy and impressed us.  And when we had suggestions to make, we both were sure that our comments were constructive and not too brutal.  It’s a delicate balance, but an important one.

 When receiving feedback, we both tried to be open and welcoming to new ideas.  This can be very hard.  I find it can feel very easy to tighten up and instinctually reject any negative feedback.  It’s easy to think: they just don’t get it!  But I found that if I could allow that initial impulse to pass, and allow myself the space to consider this feedback impassively, then suddenly I could find myself discovering wonderful different opinions or perspectives that I’d never considered when left to my own devices.  For this to happen, I felt it important to give myself time.  I tried to batten down my initial snap reaction, and take the time to let that pass and to be able to think about and consider the feedback carefully.

his doesn’t mean Arnon and I would always agree with the feedback we were giving one another!  One doesn’t have to be a pushover in order to be a good collaborator!  After giving each other the space to really listen to and consider the feedback we were giving, we both felt comfortable speaking up and voicing our opinions.  If one of us had a suggestion and the other didn’t agree with it, we would say so!  In these situations, we’d talk things out, and almost always, after some back-and-forth, we’d be able to find an agreement with which we were both comfortable.

These keys to collaboration don’t only apply to artistic collaborators.  I think this approach is applicable in any type of business or professional endeavor.

I wish you all the fortune to find many wonderful collaborators with whom you can work together!

Jose and the Pirate Captain by Arnon Z. Shorr

About Arnon Z. Shorr

Arnon Z. Shorr is an author, screenwriter and filmmaker of character-driven adventures and thrillers, where heroes grapple with the extraordinary, and in doing so, learn important truths about themselves.

Arnon spent most of his childhood between worlds: a Hebrew speaker in America, a private school kid in a rented two-bedroom apartment. Whenever he’d set foot in one world, his other foot would betray him as different. For that reason, he tells stories that embrace the peculiar, where encounters with the unexpected reveal who we are.

Website: https://www.arnonshorr.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/shorr
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ArnonShorr/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/arnonshorr/

Jose and the Pirate Captain by Arnon Z. Shorr

About Joshua Edelglass’

Joshua Edelglass is a freelance illustrator from Massachusetts. He is also the Assistant Director of Camp Ramah New England. At Brown University, Josh wrote and drew the political cartoon, WorldView for The Brown Daily Herald. That experience gave him the bug for cartooning, a passion that has never left him.

Josh’s work has appeared in a variety of exhibitions, including Pow! Jewish Comics Art and Influence that ran at the Brooklyn Jewish Art Museum in Spring 2018. Josh was included in the Jewish Comix Anthology, published in 2014 by Alternative History Press. Josh was also included in SCI: The Jewish Comics Anthology vol. 2, which was published in the fall of 2018.

Website: www.motionpicturescomics.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/joshua_edelglass/

Buy Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. Shorr


Giveaway Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. Shorr

This giveaway is for 2 print copies One for each of 2 winners. This giveaway is open to the U.S. only and ends on July 1, 2022 midnight, pacific time.  Entries accepted via Rafflecopter only.

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. Shorr Tour

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  Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano by Arnon Z. Shorr


  1. I'm so glad Laura enjoyed 'Jose and the Pirate Captain Toledano'! Thanks so much for hosting Arnon!



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