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82 of 87 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Skilled Fantasy Adventure about Human Greed
Treasure Island is one of a small number of books that are both for children and adults. The appeal of the book for children relates to the story line: pirates, buried treasure, sea voyages to faraway places, and a boy hero. The appeal of the book for adults is in seeing a wonderful example of how events operate at many different levels. Long John Silver quickly becomes...
Published on 26 May 2004 by Donald Mitchell

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Only OK
found this version overly complicated if you tried to get explanation of sailing terms and slang. First read this book in a childrens version 60 years ago and enjoyed it much better then. Maybe it is better to stick with your memories rather than update them.
Published 18 months ago by Raymond J Williams


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82 of 87 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Skilled Fantasy Adventure about Human Greed, 26 May 2004
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 127,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
Treasure Island is one of a small number of books that are both for children and adults. The appeal of the book for children relates to the story line: pirates, buried treasure, sea voyages to faraway places, and a boy hero. The appeal of the book for adults is in seeing a wonderful example of how events operate at many different levels. Long John Silver quickly becomes the focus for adults. What is his true nature? What will he do next? Clearly, Silver is one of the most interesting and memorable of all fictional characters.
A problem that children will have with this book is that the language is somewhat foreign to them. Some adults and children will find that the book starts slowly compared to newer novels (which often have the equivalent of a chase sequence in the first 5 pages).
My advice is to stick with the story for the first 6 chapters, and see how you are doing. By that time, the story will either have cast its spell on you, or you will be able to tell that this book is not for you.
A final reason for reading Treasure Island is because the book has been read by so many people. You will find references to the story in other literature and in conversation with others. You will also run into establishments called The Admiral Benbow Inn. It would be a shame not ot know its heritage. Also, finding someone else who likes Jim Hawkins and Long John Silver for the same reasons you do is a great shortcut to becoming better acquainted.
Personally, I found the story irresistible. I would have written a very similar book if I had the skill to do so. The plot is nicely balanced, and the characters provide an unusual perspective for what could easily have been a real potboiler with little to recommend it. The book has great charm, given its focus on pirates, which makes it compelling for me. I have now read the book 3 times, and enjoyed it more each time.
Have a great read!
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Yo Ho Ho, 19 May 2009
There are certain books that are so deeply embedded in our history and culture that you somehow feel you have read them even if you have not. Treasure Island is one such book. I remember as a child watching the film version at Christmas and being so terrified by both Long John Silver and, perhaps oddly, by Ben Gunn, that I almost couldn't watch. At the same time I was unsurprisingly very enamoured of brave young Jim the boy hero with whom I of course felt I could identify.

So it was with this legacy that I picked the book up some thirty years later to finally actually read it. Two things in particular surprised me in the opening chapters, firstly I had no idea how wonderfully gothic the start of the book is. The creaking Admiral Benbow Inn provides a suitably sinister backdrop for the macabre triumvirate of Captain Bill, Black Dog and best of all Blind Pew, as they `graah' and `aaahh' their way into the story. All are much larger than life but no worse for it and are clearly templates, along with Long John Silver, for many, many fictional `gentleman of fortune' who have graced page and screen since, not least Johnny Depp's Captain Jack Sparrow. Secondly I was surprised by the protagonist and narrator Jim. He is a genuinely independent boy hero with more than his fair share of wilfulness and impetuosity mixed in with the predictable obedience and piety. As the story unfolds, his apparent determination to do whatever he wants seems to grow to the point where he is in danger of becoming rather irritating. Twice he recklessly abandons his friends but on both occasions his absconding proves eventually, to his and his friends' advantage. A hero indeed with the sort of youthful exuberance and stubbornness with which every child can relate.

In the final analysis Treasure Island is not much more than a very finely written adventure story but then neither does it pretend to be. Stevenson does not seem to have had much interest in moralising or edifying and he certainly was not out to offer unique insights into the human condition, indeed the characters of Dr Livesey and Squire Trelawney are two-dimensional at best. Simply it is thoroughly enjoyable and engaging throughout, by turns extremely funny and genuinely frightening. A beautifully paced, carefully plotted example of nineteenth century children's adventure literature at its very best.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the greatest pirate stories of all time, 22 Jun. 2005
By 
Kara Ortiez (Hamilton, Canada) - See all my reviews
Treasure Island is arguably one of the greatest works of storytelling in the English language. Stevenson created other novels, with greater depth and insight, but the highlight of Treasure Island is the combination of color and poetic prose that distinguishes his tale of piracy and boyhood adventure from the rest of the field of other adventure books. The title alone paints an image of suspense, and salty pirates battling over great riches. Most people tend to view Treasure Island as a story for children, but it can be enjoyed by anyone longing for a rollicking adventure. Like so many stories from the 1800s, each chapter ends with a cliffhanger, and once you get used to the language the author's humor shines through.
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55 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book, 28 Dec. 2006
By 
Bev0199 (Leeds, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Treasure Island (Hardcover)
I bought this as a present for my 8 year old and he hasn't put it down. It is a superb large hardback with lovely illustrations and a good size of print. Would make a wonderful present for any child between the ages of 7-12 years.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cracking read, 4 Jan. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Treasure Island (Kindle Edition)
If you want a story that really doesn't stop from start to finish then this is it. I hadn't read it since I was a you boy although I've seen it often enough with Robert Newton as Silver. It was a revelation. The story is crisp and gallops along; scarcely a line is wasted and the descriptions are vivid. The attack by Hands must surely trouble youngsters but hey, isn't that what books like this should do? Good triumphs over evil, but even evil can be softened and allowed a break. Highly recommended.
THe Kindle edition is faultless.
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38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A lifelong friend, 4 Feb. 2009
By 
This review is from: Treasure Island (Hardcover)
My first ever copy of 'Treasure Island' was a prize won for being 'most improved pupil' of my year - 45 years ago. Since then, this classic adventure has been a life long friend in one form or another. In it's last reincarnation on my bookcase it was bound in dark blue with golden title but was looking decidely the worse for wear. So I bought this volume as a Christmas present to myself and I was not disappointed. The beautiful and evocative illustrations added substantially to my enjoyment of a joyfully familiar tale.
Heartily recommended!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great gift idea, 29 Jun. 2010
By 
Lizzie (Birmingham UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Treasure Island (Hardcover)
I brought this book as a birthday present for my brother in law and it is a lovely classic book.
The illustrations compliment the book and is definatley worth getting this as a hardback.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Childhood adventure stories start here, 28 Feb. 2009
I have seen the film with Robert Newton and read a condensed child's version, but only recently, thanks to Penguin's Red Fiction series of Adventure books, have I read the original novel. I can tell you that it is well worth the read. The world of pirates and treasure comes fully to life and, although the plot is pretty light, the story is convincing enough to keep you hanging on until the end. I wish I had read it years ago, and can recommend it to anyone with kids around the age of 10-13.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Smart as paint, 9 Sept. 2006
By 
J.R.Hartley (NW England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
I first read Treasure Island when I was about 9 or 10 and although it was a fairly challenging read for a child whose literary excursions up to then had largely been confined to The Famous Five, I loved every page of it. There was adventure, violence (loads of it), tall ships, tall tales, goodies, baddies, maps, treasure and, best of all, pirates! At that age there's something deeply evocative about word like pirate, stockade, musket and so on and I remember ed Jim's adventures with great fondness over the years.

In a fit of nostalgia I decided to read it again, although I was genuinely worried that I would n't like it now. If anything it's even better as it has all the great elements I remember from my childhood, but now I appreciate it on a different level and see that it's not all adventure on the high seas, but Treasure Island is a book with vivid and complex characters. Long John Silver remains the charismatic rogue I remember and even though he's a rotten villain and tricks Jim at every turn, you can't help but like him. Similarly, Blind Pew remains the terrifying character I remembered him to be and he should rattle more than a few big kids and little kids with his fierce roaring and cursing.

Some might say that Treasure Island won't appeal to today's children but this book is immediately accessible to any child with an imagination and an attention span longer than 2 minutes. In the same way, it will appeal to overgrown kids keen to live a bit of their childhoods again. It remains, as Long John Silver would say "smart as paint".
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fine read fine edition, 26 Jan. 2009
I bought this along with other White's books fine editions as I was looking to build a library of classics. I'm really happy with all of them. They've got a great, distinctive, fresh design. The cover of this uses gold brilliantly; symbolic and striking. The text is clear and the book isn't unweildy to hold.
I'd forgotten what a great story this is and surprised by how fast-paced and modern it is. There's hardly time to draw breath and it's easy to see how much of the pirate genre and folklore was influenced by this. Without it there'd probably been no 'Pirates of the Carribean' film. Hold on. That's not really a recommendation is it?
Buy this it's so much better!
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Treasure Island (Clothbound Classics)
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