Fourteen-year-old Harley Cooper discovers an ancient treasure map on Florida's west coast. An old hermit helps him search for the gold with tales of the pirate Gasparilla, but not before a category 4 hurricane blows in to wreck Harley's dream. Book #1 in the Pirate Series. More
The Last Pirate, a novel by Wilson Hawthorne, is the story of Harley Cooper, a fourteen-year-old Florida boy. One August day in the summer of 2004, Harley finds a treasure map in his crab trap on Pine Island Sound. The map originally belonged to the notorious pirate Gasparilla and had been lost for 200 years.
Harley enlists the aid of an old hermit named Salt who lives on Cayo Costa, a nearby island. Salt tells Harley tales of the dead pirate and the two use the legends to search for the gold. But, at the worst possible moment, nature sends a category four hurricane named Charley to threaten their plans.
The Last Pirate (75,000 words) was first published in April 2009. Since then, there have been four additional printings due to demand. The story appeals to a crossover audience from middle-grade to adult readers.
The author, Wilson Hawthorne, earned a BA in Writing (University of Georgia, 1983) and has been writing for print and television ever since. After years of plying local waters in his boat, the story came naturally to Hawthorne. Once he had bounced the idea off his children, he knew the tale had promise and began work on the book in the summer of 2008. Since then, the series has grown to include two sequels, The Cajun Pirate (2010) and Curse of the Pirate (2012).