Treasure on Book Island




                                                                     Marilyn Kinsella


Audience: Pre-school to 8 year olds for summer reading programs’ theme Voyage to Book Island

Puppets: Pirate - Pete, Young Boy - Bud, Crab and Hermit Crab, Sea Monster

Props: strobe light, music, CD player, starfish and shell cut-outs on the front of the stage, vines around the stage, treasure chest, shells, rock on the stage

Act I (on the beach) (Pirate and crab)


P. (to audience) Ahoy, you bunch of scurvy-lookin’ pack rats. Me name is Peg-leg Pete, Scourge of the Seven Seas, Fear Factor of the Flippered Fleet, Mighty Marauder of the Bounty Maine… arghh…but you can call me Pete…or Petey, if yer me mudder!. Ye see, I’ve been on this island for years now lookin’ for Captain Kidd’s buried treasure…no luck. Then a few weeks ago I noticed that there’s this young scallywag – a lily-livered land lubber, if ever I saw… who came to this deserted island lookin’ for the treasure too. I’ve been following him like a hawk – with me good eye that is…watchin’ his every move. Arghhh! Here he comes now…I better hide. (exit)

 B. (to himself)  I’ve been on this island for weeks looking for the buried treasure. I’ve looked and looked…no treasure. My boat crashed, I don’t have any more food to eat, and I have no place to live! There is no one around here. This island must be a deserted island. I’m soooo lonely. I feel like a hermit.

 C. (crab enters without shell) Did I hear you call me?

 B. Who? What? Did you say something?

 C. Yes, I am a hermit crab – part of the subspecies of the Herman Hermits. They call me Hermie, and I thought I thought I heard you calling me.

 B.  Why hello, Hermie! I’m so glad to meet you. I’ve been sooo lonely out here. I’m just glad to have someone to talk to…even if you are a crab. Oh, I didn’t mean that.

 C. Oh, that’s okay. I get that all the time. I can be a bit of a crab. Say, do you know my girlfriend’s name?

 P. No, I don’t know your girlfriend’s name. What is it?

 C. Shelly…get it Shelly Oh, I crack me up, sometimes. Say, what’s your name?

 B. My name is…Bud, but I didn’t call you. What I did say was that I felt like a hermit.

 C. Oh, I see. I know how you feel. You see a hermit crab lives in a shell – a mobile home, if you will, and I can’t find my home. Every time I find just the right shell, Seigfried, the shell-snatching seagull comes along and snatches it away. No wonder I’m such a crab! Now, I have to go out on this hot beach and find another shell.

 B. Do you need a shell? Maybe I can help you find one.

 C. You will make me very happy, if you do that. Maybe I can return the favor one day.

 B. Okay, so what kind of shell do you want?

 C. Well…not too big or I will have to lug it around…and not too small or I will have to go on the seafood diet just to fit inside.

 B. What’s the..the seafood diet?

 C. I eat all the food I see!  Get it see-food.

 B. I see, I see!

 C. Sorry, I just can’t resist a good pun. While you are looking for the shell, I will hide under this rock. That sun can dry me up! I wouldn’t want to get a sunburn! By the way, Bud, do you know why the crab crossed the beach?

 B. Aaaa..To get to the other side?

 C. No…to get to Sponge Bob! (laughs at his own joke) Bet you didn’t see that coming…heh-heh…Sponge Bob! 

 B. You sure are a happy crab! While you think up more crabby jokes under that rock, I’ll comb the beach and find you a new house…er, a shell-ter to live in. Get it, Hermie…Shell-ter!   (both laugh and exit –switch crab puppet for hermit crab puppet. Bud walks back and forth across the stage with a shell towards the rock. Each time he hears Hermie say things like “Nope, that doesn’t fit either.” “Huh-huh” “Ouch” “Ooomph, too big” etc.)

 B. (to audience) Phlphlth! I’ve tried 20 different shells and nothing seems to work. I found this shell maybe this will work (walks toward rock and Hermie says, “Ahhh! Just right!” (both Bud and Hermie  as hermit crab puppet enter)


 C. Thank you Bud! This house is just right. Now that you did something for me, I want to give something to you.

 B. Oh boy, can you tell me where the buried treasure is?

 C. Sorry, Bud, I don’t have any idea where the treasure is, but I know someone who can help. It’s the Slithery Dee that lives at the bottom of the sea. If anyone can help, he can.

 B. But how do I get to talk to this Slithery Dee, if he lives at the bottom of the sea.

 C. Well, you need to walk to the edge of the sea so your toes touch the water and then say the magic words and they are: “Slithery Dee at the bottom of the sea, come to the surface so I may see.” When ole Slithery appears just tell him that Hermie sent you.

 B. Thanks Hermie. I hope you enjoy your new home. (both exit)

 ACT 2 (at the water’s edge)

 B. (enters) Okay, I’m willing to try anything. My toes in the water, here goes: “Slithery Dee at the bottom of the sea, come to the surface so I may see.” (rushing of water or other sound effect, strobe light and Slithery appears)


 B. Wow! Look at that… a real, live Slithery Dee. I sure hope he can tell me where the buried treasure is hidden. Hello there, Mr. Slithery Dee, Sir. Your friend Hermie sent me. I helped him find a new home and he said that you might be able to help me find the buried treasure.

 S. Hermie, eh. He’s always losing that house of his. Since you were so kind, I will show you a map that leads to the treasure. (Bud looks at the map - or whispers the directions - pssst -pssst in his ear)



B. Thank you Slithery!

 ACT 3 (back on the beach)

 P. (from the side of the stage peeking out to audience) Arghh! I could see that scallyway talkin’ to the crab and to that sea monster, but I couldn’t hear what they were saying. It looks to me though like he has some information about the treasure. Maybe I better go visit that crab and find out. (exit)

 P. (Pete and crab on stage) Well, well, well, what do we have here?

 C. Hello, my name is Hermie. I’m a Hermit Crab. Do you know why crabs don’t like to share?

 P. No, why don’t crabs like to share?

 C. Because they are shellfish…get it shellfish?

 P. Arghh. That joke is so bad it makes me want to walk the plank to put meself out of me misery!

 C. Okay, no more jokes. You see, I have the worst luck. I just got a new shell when Seigfried, the shell-snatching seagull, came along and stole it.

 P. (sassy) Well, isn’t that too bad…. you lost your shell. Boo-hoo! Try some super glue next time. What do you want me to do about it?

 C. If you can find me a shell, maybe I can help you.

 P. Yeah…right…pffft!…you can help me! (to audience) Wait a minute, I saw that kid give him a shell, maybe I better do the same. (to crab) Ahem, I mean… you can help me? That would be most generous of you. You are not shellfish at all! I just go and fetch a shell.

 C. The sun is so hot. I’ll just hide under that rock and you can bring me the shells to me.

 P. (brings shells back and forth again; off stage you hear “Too little” “Too big” etc)

 P. This crab is the crabbiest crab. I’m sick and tired of this. This shell will have to do (goes to the rock and off stage you hear “Ow!” “Ooomph” “Stop your whinin’! This looks fine!”)

P. (Pete and hermit crab enter – crab’s shell is tight use duct tape) There, you look great. Duct tape is the world’s greatest invention. Now, how about what I want!

 C. Okay, what do you want?

 P. I am looking for the buried treasure on this island. Where is it?

 C. Sorry I don’t know, but if you go visit the Slithery Dee perhaps he can tell you. Just go to the edge of the water and say the magic words:

                               “Slithery Dee at the bottom of the sea,

                                  come to the surface so I may see.”

When ole Slithery appears just tell him that the crab sent you.

 P. Got it. (to audience) He-he-he! I’m gonna be rich! (both exit)

 ACT 4 (at the edge of the ocean water)

 P. Gee, do I fell silly, but here it goes:

                             “Slithery Dee at the bottom of the sea,

                               come to the surface so I may see.”

 S. (noise and lights as Slithery rises up) Yes, how may I help you.

 P. I’ve come from this old crab. I got him a new shell and he said you would help me find the buried treasure.

 S. An old crab, eh? Well, here is the map. Look at it well.

 P. (looking at map) Yeah, I never thought of lookin’ there…heh-heh-hey…now for that treasure.

 ACT 5   (somewhere on the island)     (treasure chest on the stage)

 P. Shiver me timbers! I got here before that kid. The treasure is mine…all mine, I say! I’m rich, rich, rich. (opens the treasure chest - or looks inside) What! Where’s the gold doubloons; where’s the ruby rings; where’s giant pearls! I’ve been ripped off! There’s nothin’ in here but a bunch of dumb old books. I’ve been robbed, I tell ya…robbed! (walks off stage) 


 B.(enter) Ah, there’s the treasure. Uh-oh, looks like somebody beat me to it. But wait, there’s still something inside. Books! Wow! I sure miss reading, since I’ve been on this island. Why there are all kind of books…books for fun – like Hatchet and Swiss Family Robinson, and some books that tell me how to survive on a desert island. Now, I can learn how to make fire, and what plants are safe to eat, and how to build a tree house. There’s even one on how to make smoke signals as a call for help. Maybe some ship will come to rescue me. Like the librarian always told me…you will never be lonely, if you have a book in your hand. This is box is full of treasure!

 P. (Pete enters back on stage) Stand back, my name is Peg leg Pete and I’ve been keepin’ me good eye on you.

 B. Wow! A real, honest-to-goodness pirate. Hello, Mr. Pete. My name is…Bud….and I’ve always wanted to know how you lost your leg.

 P. Arghh. It twas a dark and stormy night at sea. The boom broke away and knocked me out into the sea and a shark came by and bit off me leg.



B. Ga-lee! Well then, how did you lose your hand?

 P. Arghh. It twas a dark and stormy night at sea. The boom broke away and knocked me clean out into the sea. A shark came by and bit off me hand.

 B. Ga-lee! Well, then, how did you lose your eye?

 P. Arghh! One day I was looking up at the crow’s nest and a seagull came flyin’ by and splat in me eye.

 B. Ga-lee…wait a minute…how did that put your eye out?

 P. Arghh, I went to wipe it away, but it was day after I got me new hook! But, enough of your questions! I’m the one who opened that treasure chest. Are you telling me that books are treasures?

 B. Why, yes… books are worth their weight in gold, when you consider all the fun things you can learn from them.

 P. Arghh! But, I can’t read. Some of them have pretty pictures and all, but I can’t make heads nor tails of those squiggly-lookin’ letters.

 B. The only thing better than reading to oneself is reading to someone else. So, what ya say we share in this bounty? Come on Pete join me in this little ditty….


Sailing, sailing over to Book Island

We read some stories

We have no worries

And then we read some more – Oh!

Sailing, sailing over to Book Island

We take a look

At a book

And then we read some more.

B. (to audience) You don’t even have to go to a desert island to find  a treasure of books. They are right here in the library. Happy Reading, everybody! Or, as my friend Pete would say…..

 P. Arghh!


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