Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Treasure Island (Robert Louis Stevenson)

Treasure Island
Robert Louis Stevenson
Public Domain Books
Fiction, YA Adventure
***+ (Okay/Good)

DESCRIPTION: Young Jim Hawkins never anticipated a life of adventure, content to live and work with his parents at the quiet Admiral Benbow inn... but when the surly old sea dog came to stay, trouble soon found him. When the man breathes his last, he leaves behind a sea chest, a curious map, and a dark collection of murderous enemies. Jim soon finds himself swept far away from the family inn, as part of an ill-fated expedition to Treasure Island searching for pirate treasure.

REVIEW: As I've mentioned previously, I keep meaning to expand my reading horizons beyond fantasy and the occasional sci-fi. It was also free on Kindle, so now seemed as good a time as any to catch up on yet another classic I never got around to reading in my youth. It proved reasonably interesting, full of danger and adventure... and if characterization tended to stereotype and Jim proved uncommonly lucky in his perpetual ability to win against all odds (or at least fail in beneficial ways), well, it is ultimately a sailor's tale, and nobody exaggerates a tale quite like a salty sailor. The pirate slang and sea jargon grew thick at times, and the elder-day writing style made for occasionally slow going, but overall it kept me reading. Not a bad story, and certainly worth the price. (I've read worse "classics," I can tell you that much.)

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