Book Review- Treasure Island

Book: Treasure Island

Author: Robert Louis Stevenson

Written: 1883

Published: 1998 (Oxford World Classics Paperback Edition)

Publisher: Oxford University Press, Inc


Jim Hawkins is an average boy who spends his days helping his mother and father run the Admiral Benbow, the family inn. He has no reason to suspect that when an unruly seaman, no doubt a former pirate, takes up quarters, his life will soon be changed drastically. The seaman, Billy Bones, has a map, one that his former shipmates will stop at nothing for – including attacking the inn. Left with the map, Jim solicits the help of Dr. Livesey and Squire Trelawney in order to set off after the treasure. Before long their voyage is under way and Jim is taken under the wing of a one-legged sea cook. But their adventure has hardly begun, as unbeknownst to the travelers, the pirates are closer than they could ever imagine.

I have been trying to read this book for over a year now. I kept picking it up and getting about 10 pages into it, and never reading any farther; so after pushing past the first 10 pages and not being able to put the book down, I can honestly say this is a must read! It has pirates, treasure (thus the title…), adventure on the high seas… my inner child was dancing in glee (not to mention swinging a little cardboard sword at imaginary buccaneers). Oh, and did I mention the scenes/songs  from Muppet Treasure Island playing though my head as I read various scenes?  The book was, is, and always will be a classic, and it is a great story for adults and older children (young children might be a little frightened by some of the scenes). I had very few issues with anything in the book with the exception of the wording/vocabulary. Some of the terminology was a little difficult to follow, as I am not a sea-faring girl of the 1800’s, though in context it was not hard to get the gist of what was being said. Also, the way things were worded made it a bit difficult to follow who the author was talking about in a couple of scenes. Finally, the biggest caveat, and again, chalk it up to the use of a differing vocabulary in a different era, was that there were a couple of words used that have innocuous meanings, yet sound incredibly similar to some rather unacceptable words by today’s standard.

Overall, I give this book 5 pages. It was awesome beginning to end, and I look forward to reading it again. So go out, have an adventure, and read this book. Arrrrrrrrrrgh.


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