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I can’t seem to get enough of Robert Louis Stevenson! Why didn’t I read his works earlier! “Treasure Island” which I just finished was as engaging and entertaining as Kidnapped. Fellow blogger Vishy had even then mentioned the joys of this book and had urged me to read it. First the synopsis, although most of you might already know it – Jim Hawkins, a young boy, comes into possession of a treasure map. He shares this information with Doctor Livesey and Squire Trelawney who immediately gears up to find the treasure. They set sail with a handful of trusted men but later find out that they are amongst buccaneers. Fights ensue and amidst it all they reach the island where the treasure is at. What follows is a highly enjoyable account of piracy, deceit, honesty, leadership and above all – finding the big treasure!
Jim Hawkins is every inch the excitable boy who throws himself headlong into any adventure that comes his way, whether it is for the good or bad. At times he seems to possess a certain intelligence that goes beyond his age but at others he also displays the typical foolhardiness that comes from being so young.
Long John Silver is the other personality in the book that caught my attention. Imbued with shades of darkness and trickery, Silver is intriguing. His physical sketch is that of a classical pirate –
“His left leg was cut off close by the hip, and under the left shoulder he carried a crutch, which he managed with wonderful dexterity, hopping about upon it like a bird. He was very tall and strong, with a face as big as a ham – plain and pale, but intelligent and smiling.”
Only a scar somewhere is missing! He reminded me of Captain Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbeans for some reason.
What dampened my reading pleasure, albeit to a minor extent, was the use of sea vocabulary and ship terms. Also, the language of the pirates was not really easy to follow and sometimes I had to re-read a few sentences. But these reinforce authenticity to the tale and Stevenson’s fast paced writing is to be lauded. Well, needless to say, I look forward to reading Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde, next in my Stevenson list.
Verdict: Be prepared to be carried away to the seas and go on a treasure hunt!