dinsdag 27 september 2016

Jules Verne: Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea

Hi everyone

I finally read the Jules Verne’s most famous work; twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea.
My copy has 244 pages and a 6-page introduction and I got it at De Slegte.
You can find all my Jules Verne reviews here.

 “An American frigate, tracking down a ship-sinking monster, faces not a living creature but an incredible invention -- a fantastic submarine commanded by the mysterious Captain Nemo. Suddenly a devastating explosion leaves just three survivors who find themselves prisoners in Nemo's death ship on an underwater odyssey around the world, as Captain Nemo -- one of the most horrible villains ever created -- takes his revenge out on society.”

I quite enjoyed this book.

First of all, what I didn’t know before reading the book is that the twenty thousand leagues of the title do not refer to the depth but to the distance traveled.

The story is captivating and thrilling. It’s a true adventure story and I understand why so many boys love these books. Even as an adult woman it’s fun to read.
The characters are great and I liked their interactions though I did get annoyed with Conseil and how he worships his master. Sends shivers down my spine, someone acting like that.
Same goes for the portrayal of some of the natives in the book. Very, very racist.
I liked the plot too. A lot happens and most of it seems unimportant but because the central plot is so simple (Cpt. Nemo versus our three heroes) it makes the story go by really fast. Verne builds up to the final chapters, but all in all, it is a pretty unexciting book. Fun to read, certainly, and a lot of interesting, different things happen, but I was never on the edge of my seat.

Part of that is of course due to Verne’s tendency to go on and on and on about too many details. There’s list after list of fishes, plant life and other utterly boring stuff. It honestly made me yawn from time to time; they are so tedious and boring.

The science in the book is both impressive and hilarious. It’s a great experience reading science fiction that describes something (anything) in a future now past. There are plenty mistakes in the way The Nautilus works and other events but at the same time it’s amazing how detailed and accurate other ‘predictions’ are.

In short, it’s a very enjoyable book if you can see past the tedious lists and the racist characters.


Happy reading!