Saturday, April 10, 2010

Robert Louis Stevenson - Two-For

It's good to have something different every once in a while. This week I decided to bounce back a few years and go with a couple classics from Robert Louis Stevenson. When I went to our bookshelf, I had every intent to pick up James Fenimore Cooper(guess I was interested in three name authors) and read Last of the Mohicans, but that didn't last. Cooper didn't fair to well. He's very text-bookish and I don't really feel like that at the moment. Stevenson wasn't, and I found both of the books I read VERY enjoyable.

Treasure Island (Puffin Classics) was the first book by Stevenson that I read this week. I know that most of the last couple generations will think of The Pirates of the Caribbean when they hear pirate, treasure, booty, and pieces of eight. It's unfortunate b/c this is an excellent classic for one to read at any age. It's a great adventure story told from the point of view of a young man(or teenager, I guess there's a small spread). Treasure Island is incredibly well written and keeps you moving from one point to the next without any real boring gaps. I do believe that the only thing I would have done differently is REMEMBER TO STAY AWAY FROM ONE-LEGGED SAILORS! Just don't give any ground.. tsk tsk.

Next book for the week was Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. It's a little shorter than Treasure Island, and helped supplement some pages for the week. Where I felt that TI was well written, Jekyll & Hyde was just brilliant. I am not a great writer, but I can see great writing when I need to. Stevenson uses punctuation in a manner that is sorely missed in this day and age. It is a agreeable to me. The story itself is also good; it isn't overshadowed by the punctuation. It wasn't what I was expecting though. Whenever I think of Jekyll & Hyde I see a normal doctor and a monster. You do have both of those, but the monster is somewhat short on stature..... makes up with it on hatred though. It's told from the perspective of a lawyer and through a few letters from Jekyll himself. It's a little abrupt though. Beware of doctors that hide themselves in their cabinet, act erratically, and end up disappearing. It's not good for business, or your health.

"Mr Utterson, The Lawyer, was a man of rugged countenance, that was never lighted by a smile; cold, scanty and embarrassed in discourse; backward sentiment; lean, long, dusty, dreary, and yet somehow lovable." 

Rating for Treasure Island: 8.5
Rating for Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde: 7.5(10 on punctuation)


Next on the horizon: A fantasy book from Christmas that I received from my Aunt Nell, and a book from booksneeze that I need to review.


  1. I am amazed some of the "classics" in literature are not as daunting as I once thought they were. I can't believe Dr. J & Mr. H is less than 75 pages. But then again 75 pages can be torture (Conrad, anyone?)

  2. Awwww, I like Conrad.... Ok, i started that tea book. But I have to finish Mrs. Dalloway- talk about 75 pages being torture- so gimme a week or two!