This 19th-century adventure novel will delight Verne fans. As in other works by Verne the characters are ideal and the plot seems convenient rather than organic. Verne was not a scientist, but he was obsessed by all the scientific disciplines. Verne’s novels are full of magical inventions and pseudo-scientific rhetoric. In The Mysterious Island, five men and a pooch land their balloon on an exotic island. They undertake to learn the secret of the place. Narrator Berny Clark’s lively voice sings out the animated dialogue. His excited yet genteel tone makes the densely descriptive text sound lighter and less mannered. His voice sustains an energetic lilt throughout his performance of this lengthy and exhaustively sketched fiction.
Based on the true story of Alexander Selkirk, who survived alone for almost five years on an uninhabited island off the coast of Chile, The Mysterious Island is considered by many to be Jules Verne’s masterpiece.
“Wide-eyed mid-nineteenth-century humanistic optimism in a breezy, blissfully readable translation by Stump” (Kirkus Reviews), here is the enthralling tale of five men and a dog who land in a balloon on a faraway, fantastic island of bewildering goings-on and their struggle to survive as they uncover the island’s secret.
Public Domain (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
A sequel to "20,000 Leagues..." the book postulates a long balloon ride from Libby Prison in Richmond (1865) to a south seas island. One character, an engineer, dominates/leads the others and they all create an idyllic life on a the island. Originally published in 1874, republished many times over, the amount of research to create pottery, nitroglycerine, build a boat, domesticate animals, etc., was amazing. The writing style also reflects the times as does the attitude toward slavery and class. As I missed the opportunity in high school, I'll read some more Jules Verne.
No Pink Ponies
The print version is very long. But some translations are better than others. This one is mediocre.
The meeting of the colonists with the mysterious benefactor in the caverns of Lincoln Island. One of science fiction's great moments with one of science fiction's great characters.
The performance was good, except I disliked the reader's voice for Pencroft the sailor. It was annoying--the gruffness was a good idea, but the voicing was forced and positively irritating.
This was one of my favorite books as a child. For some reason, however, the characters came alive more in the written version, especially Herbert, who seems less important in the spoken version. The end does make you cry a bit--it is bittersweet.
I still think this is one of Verne's best novels. In a way, it's a sequel to "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea" which is perhaps a greater novel than this.
Mom of 3 and a book lover.
I was happy found the audio version and enjoyed it as if I read it myself.
The characters are thrown together during a hurricane and there begins their journey. They are creative, intelligent and men of integrity. Survival and daily needs must be conquered. They have an unseen benefactor who watches over them. It is such a great read, pick it up and see for your self
"Listening with my other ear"
Yes, it was soooo good. Jules Verne has always been and is continuing to be one of my favorite authors.
The whole book was so consistent that is hard to pick a singular moment. Maybe it was when they found their mysterious benefactor and watching how Verne ties his books together.
Creating Granite House
Nothing, I loved it!
We have read a lot of Jules Verne in our home school class. Everything from Journey to the Center Of The Earth to 20,000 Leagues. But for some reason this one was my sons favorite and now mine too. WONDERFUL WONDERFUL WONDERFUL!
An avid, omnivorous but critical reader.
Perhaps I'm not quite as perceptive as other listeners but I was quite satisfied with the resolution of the mystery of the island. The glimpse into the behaviours found acceptable and the black and white (pun intended) view of the values of the age was fascinating at first but grew old as the novel progressed.
This was my first audible Jules Verne but I have read all of the others. This one seemed to me to be slower moving than the others.
I haven't heard him before but I would certainly choose him again as a narrator.
For sure. Bruce Willis would have to be the sailor and I'd love to see Morgan Freeman as the captain. Given the values of the era, this would mix things up nicely in a modern version of the tale !
An interesting book, well narrated with a satisfactory mystery but perhaps an ideal candidate for an abridged version.
Live in Cocoa Beach Florida. Am a videographer and photographer.
I would recommend Mysterious Island to anyone who likes adventure stories. This book has mystery and excitement seldom found.
This is a fast moving story continuously presenting the unexpected.
I very much enjoyed the scenes when the characters discovered and built their dwelling in side of the mountain.
Avid reader and audible listener. Usually the person recommending rather than following the yellow brick road to the fad of the moment
the performance was so lacking I can't say whether I liked the story or not. I could only stand the performer for short periods, then I had to turn him off!
If the narrator is good then the audio edition is pretty much always better. In this case, the narrator was very good and I liked it.
I finally read/listened to this book last month and enjoyed every chapter. It shows how they managed to survive on the island by making tools and items in their cave. This book is by far one of the best "stranded on an island" books you could hope for. It is probably one of Jules Verne's best. The inhabitants of an island are banded together and when they get into a tight spot, there is a mysterious force that always helps out. This force is not revealed until nearly the end. I highly recommend it to everyone.
Maybe it's the translation: but I doubt it. The political correctness problems of this classic novel are so unfashionable now that I can only remind listeners that it's French PC issues, not American (despite the fact that the characters are ostensibly American from the Civil War). The French, of course, had African colonies at this time. The black servant Ned is described incessantly in terms far more condescending than those used for the dog belonging to the castaways. The reader sounds as if he is soldiering on during all this, embarassed but trying manfully to give value for wages.
Basically it's a shipwreck story and how they made do, like Swiss Family Robinson or Robinson Crusoe, both of which Verne references. Captain Nemo is there -- it's his home island -- and gives an occasional helpful hand to the survivors of the balloon's wild runaway during a hurricane as the passengers escape a Southern prisoner-of-war camp during the American Civil War. Verne's original slant was to leave the marooned men with almost nothing at all to work with, as opposed to the copious supplies both the other fictional shipwrecks could salvage. They have to depend instead on The Engineer, an august being who owns the servant, the dog, and an Olympian ability to make quite a lot out of nothing, in a celebration of 19th century science.
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