Saturday, June 19, 2010

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea
Jules Verne

The Amazon.com product description:
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea is a book written by Jules Verne. It is widely considered to be one of the top 100 greatest books of all time. This great novel will surely attract a whole new generation of readers. For many, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea is required reading for various courses and curriculums. And for others who simply enjoy reading timeless pieces of classic literature, this gem by Jules Verne is highly recommended. Published by Quill Pen Classics and beautifully produced, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea would make an ideal gift and it should be a part of everyone's personal library.
20,000 Leagues Under the SeaI was inspired to read the book because I watched the 1997 movie version of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea last week. I liked the movie (a lot), so, of course, I wanted to see how it compared to the book.

First off, concerning the book, my edition came with the Kobo e-reader and was originally done through the Gutenberg project. The downside is that I can't find a copyright date, and Amazon doesn't exactly give the original date on the various editions. Thus the lack of information at the top of the review.

One thing I found really neat on comparing the two is that everything in the movie does happen in the book, although it's not in the same order, for the same reasons, or even the same characters. They created some characters out of whole cloth and changed a number of others to add tension to the story.

Some examples of the changes include the pearl diver in Malaysia, the Antarctic race and Atlantis. Not to mention Captain Nemo's whole set of motivations. Completely different between the two. I actually liked that about the movie. It made sense. I'm still trying to figure out the Captain Nemo from the book - what he was doing travelling around under the ocean and even moreso the last attack in the book. It just doesn't make sense to me, or perhaps I missed something in my reading.

Even with that though, I preferred reading Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea to my read of Around the World In Eighty Days. It felt less like I needed cultural background notes to read and understand.

The book is definitely a good, family-friendly read which both kids and adults can enjoy.
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