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"The world's still the same. There's just...less in it."
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Pirates of the Caribbean: Jack Sparrow: The Sword of Cortés is the fourth in the series of young reader books written by Rob Kidd dealing with the early life of Jack Sparrow. It was released on October 1, 2006.

Publisher's summary[]

Before the Black Pearl, there was a teenage stowaway named Jack Sparrow...

He has the enchanted sheath. He's read the mystical incantation. He's holding the all-powerful Sword of Cortés in his hands. But unfortunately for Jack Sparrow, he also has the specter of the Sword's first master—Hernán Cortés—watching over his shoulder. Now, stranded on a snowy Caribbean island, the fate of the Barnacle's crew hangs in the balance. Jack must find a way to command the unwieldy power of the Sword, defeat Cortés, and save his mates.

But, as usual, it won't be very easy.


Jack Sparrow and his crew are on Isla Fortuna, where they have accidentally summoned the spirit of Hernán Cortés back from the afterlife. The undead conquistador seems willing to teach Jack how to use his legendary weapon, the Sword of Cortés. However, Jack's crew is not so happy in the presence of a man who slaughtered an entire empire. What's even worse, Jack's crewman Tumen suddenly becomes very ill.

Jack Sparrow with the spirit of Hernán Cortés and his Sword.

Cortés uses the Sword to banish the Cutlass, the ship of the pirate Left-Foot Louis, and he causes the snow to start falling on the island. Terrified, Jack's crew refuses to stay with Jack while he uses the Sword and they retreat to the inn. Cortés teaches Jack how to use the Sword, but the Sword works only when Jack does what Cortés tells him to do.

Cortés promises to teach Jack how to use the full power of the Sword, but only if he brings him the Eye of Stone-Eyed Sam. Cortés turns Jack's boat, the Barnacle, into the grandest warship that ever sailed the Caribbean, the Grand Barnacle. Armed with the Sword, Jack sails the Grand Barnacle for Isla Sirena.

During the search for the legendary home of the mermaids, Jack encounters a British warship. The British crew attacks the Grand Barnacle, but since Jack's ship is protected by the Sword of Cortés, it doesn't get a single scratch, while it furiously destroys the British vessel into pieces, leaving no survivors. Suddenly, Isla Sirena appears, and the Grand Barnacle is surrounded by thousands of mermaids.

Jack has no choice but to let mermaids take him to their underwater home, the great chamber beneath Isla Sirena. The three mermaid leaders, Morveren, Aquala, and Aquila expect Jack to surrender to them his greatest treasure, his freedom, but Jack makes a new deal with them. If he wins a duel, he keeps his freedom and the Sword of Cortés, and the mermaids give him back the Eye of Stone-Eyed Sam. The mermaids agree, but Jack has to fight the two giant Iguana monsters, against which the Sword of Cortés is powerless. However, Jack manages to trick the monsters into killing each other. Victorious, Jack demands the Stone Eye, but the mermaids reveal that the Eye is in possession of the voodoo priestess Tia Dalma. Jack uses the power of the sword to teleport back to the Grand Barnacle, and sails for the mouth of the Pantano River.

In Tia Dalma's shack, Jack demands the Stone Eye, but Tia Dalma wishes the Sword of Cortés as a payment. Jack tells her that he needs the Sword to defeat Cortés and save his crew, and she agrees to receive her payment later. She gives him the Eye and explains what it really is-a prison for the spirits of the Aztecs that were slaughtered by Cortés. She gives him two beads, one white and one red, to use them to unlock the Eye. She also warns him that someone is searching for him, and "him wants him ring back".

Jack returns to Isla Fortuna and discovers that he was absent for a few days, while it looked like only a few hours to him. Tumen's health has become much worse, and Jack tries to heal him with the Sword of Cortés, but his condition becomes even more worse. Furious, Jack goes to confront Cortés, who still waits for him in the graveyard.

The spirits of Montecuhzoma and Cortés.

Jack demands from Cortés that he teaches him how to use the full power of the Sword, but the conquistador reveals that he has no such intentions. Instead, the whole time Cortés was using Jack to achieve his own ends, not Jack's. He wishes the Stone Eye because with it and the Sword, he could rule the Seven Seas. Then, Arabella comes to inform Jack that Tumen is dead. Furious, Jack uses Tia Dalma's beads to unleash the power of the Stone Eye, and hundreds of spirits leave their prison. The last spirit to emerge from the Eye is the Aztec emperor Montecuhzoma himself, who blames Cortés for his death. The two spirits clash and the undead Aztec defeats the undead Spaniard, submerging him under the water.

Montecuhzoma uses his power to resurrect Tumen and leaves the island. Jack uses the Sword of Cortés to undone everything that would please its former master. The Grand Barnacle turns back into the Barnacle, and the citizens of Puerto San Judas, vanished by Left-Foot Louis, suddenly reappear. The British warship destroyed by the Grand Barnacle also appears, sailing off the coast of Isla Fortuna. The Barnacle's crew sails for the Yucatán, but not before one final stop in Tia Dalma's shack. Jack gives the Sword to Dalma for safekeeping. Jean Magliore asks Tia Dalma to turn his sister back into a girl, but Tia Dalma responds that the power he needs lies in Jack's hands. Before they departed, Tia Dalma warns Jack that the Sword wasn't the only curse that Cortés left behind.



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The cover of the 2017 edition.

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