I have equated Stevenson with adventure since I was a child. Treasure Island fascinated me and bowled me over completely. I actually remember being wide eyed as I flipped through the pages of the book, dreading Long John Silver, giggling over his talking parrot and marveling at the courageous Jim Hawkins.
Ensconced in the Admiral Benbow Inn, Captain Billy Bones suffers a stroke on meeting Black Dog, an old buddy. Upon receiving the black spot with a warning, Billy Bones calls it a day. Jim and his mother rifle through his chest to take what they are owed. Pirates attack the inn, but Dr. Livesey comes to the rescue just in time. Jim has the infamous treasure map in his pocket and Squire Trelawney and Dr. Livesey agree to set sail to find treasure!
The Hispaniola, a fine schooner, is staffed with a jolly cook, a full crew and a reluctant captain. They set sail for the treasure island. Just in time, Jim overhears a shocking plan and learns that the Hispaniola’s crew is made up of pirates. Pirates who plan to kill them once they reach the island and find treasure. What happens next is a thrilling adventure that needs to be read rather than told.
Do young Jim Hawkins, the doctor and the squire survive the mutiny? Do they find treasure, and do they stay alive to talk of it? I get lost in the story every time I read it, and it is most enjoyable for youngsters and older people alike. Watching a movie like the ‘Pirates’ is lame compared to reading Treasure Island. It has a timeless quality to it, and the vivid picture it paints of a different time is still romantic. There is no radar or sonar available to the Hispaniola’s crew, nor do they have high tech weapons. But the hatred and venom can be felt as you read the book. No wonder then that Treasure Island is a most beloved classic.
Available in the public domain, Treasure Island can be downloaded free for the Kindle.