Treasure Island - Independent Reading Book Project

"Treasure Island Book Review"

Treasure Island is a novel published in 1883 by Robert Louis Stevenson. The book was meant to just be stories that he told to his stepson, and ended up being published into a great story that has been famous and told for generations. The movie “Pirates of the Caribbean” was based off of the well-known novel, and for that I have based my creative portion of the individual reading book project on the movie’s ‘theme song.’ “He’s a Pirate” was composed by Hans Zimmer and Klaus Badelt and is used in the movie as the background and occasional ambient music. I think it goes perfectly with the book beccause I couldn’t help but imagine that music playing while I was reading. The song has an epic feel, and for that I decided to play it on piano and use it as my creative piece.

Billy Bones leaves a chest at the Admiral Benbow for safekeeping, and stays there along with it. He dies from a fatal stroke. Jim Hawkins, the protagonist, finds a treasure map in the chest, and with the help of characters that were introduced earlier in the novel, he goes in search of Treasure Island with the crew. The treasure is from the already deceased Captain Flint. Will the treasure be found? Read the rest to figure out what happens in the rest of the gripping story.

The main character is Jim Hawkins, the narrator, and son of the owner of the Admiral Benbow. Jim tells about his adventures with the pirate crew, and his experience in his “coming of age.” He uses his feelings and emotions to portray the story in his own way, explaining everything that happens in good detail.

The main conflict is getting along with Captain Flint’s old crew, and getting to Treasure Island. It isn’t until they get there that they all realize something has happened, which could change the entire story from the expected outcome.

My favorite character is Jim Hawkins. I think this because first of all, his name is pretty darn epic and awesome. Also, he has a sort of mysterious nature. It’s hard to explain, but when he explains the story from the narration point of view, he tells it in his own way, unlike any other books that I have read previously. He also has a sense of adventure, and I like his personality. It really fits the story.

I think the reader should take away the fact that even if the book is old and a little challenging, it can still be a treasureable story. The words and lingo used are a little more traditional, and adding the fact that it contains a lot of vocabulary that I’m not used to, it was a challenge to read. There were words like “dubloons” that I have never really heard as part of a story before. It was interesting to see how pirates would have talked, too. I think one huge theme is how when you “come of age” you can prove how heroic or gallant you can be.

I don’t think I can relate to anyone in the book, considering the setting was in the eighteenth century, and most of the characters were pirates, but I still enjoyed the book either way. I don’t think books need to cater to the reader and have to be relatable to be enjoyable. Adding to this, I haven’t had any similar experiences to the characters in the book either, because, well... The characters are fantastical pirates from the eighteenth century that go on adventures in search of treasure!

Overall, I enjoyed the book very much because it was a challenge to read and comprehend, and I’m not usually a fan of old fiction. I think it’s something that I wouldn’t pick up first if I were given a pile of books to choose from, but I’m very happy that I did pick it up to read, because it’s a very enthralling novel.

I think a major strength of the book is the ability for the writer to change perspectives. It was very interesting to read when Jim Hawkins traded in telling the story with Doctor Livesey, who had a more accurate version of the story, while Jim included what he felt like. Also, the reader is painted a picture of exactly what every staggering detail is. Without the visualization in a fiction book, the book easily becomes boring, and it’s not as fun to imagine or think about the plot.

I don’t think I would change such a classic book, but if I had to, I would change the beginning. I find it very confusing on how the events take place, and I had to reread a lot of parts, just to understand what was going on. Once I did understand it, it was really worth it, and I was glad that I had gone through again to read it. 

I think I would recommend this book to anyone that enjoys suspense and adventure. I often times found myself wondering where something that had happened in the beginning of the book would come back. It made me wonder if it was foreshadowing, or if it was going to eventually tie into the later plot.

I enjoyed the book, and am proud of my creative portion that I have created. I don’t think I would change a single thing about it. Please watch my video of me playing “He’s a Pirate” on piano. 

Click this link.

Screen Shot 2013-06-07 at 7.25.00 AM
Screen Shot 2013-06-07 at 7.25.00 AM