The subject of countless adaptations, Oliver Twist is an essential read or listen, and this version is both exciting and accessible for children ages 8 to 13. Roy McMillan uses Dickens’ original words in the main text, simplifying and clarifying them at certain points. Oliver’s journey to London is narrated with ceaseless energy by Jonathan Keeble; his reading is infused with a delicious knack for storytelling.
Roy McMillan talks about Don Quixote, one the most influential novels in Western literature.
Our eponymous hero finds himself shipwrecked on an African desert island after a tumultuous storm, and following the realization he is the only survivor, is faced with the prospect of years of isolation. However, he throws his energy into familiarizing himself with his new habitat: he hunts, learns how to make pottery and even adopts a parrot. And after encountering a group of cannibals, Robinson Crusoe finally finds a companion.
Lemuel Gulliver sets out on a series of travels, but each time he finds himself shipwrecked in new and unfamiliar lands. And how unfamiliar! In Lilliput, everyone is tiny, and it takes thousands of them to capture him; in Brobdingnag, they’re huge and treat him as a sort of living toy; in Laputa, they live on a floating island inventing impossibly mad projects; and the Houyhnhnms are horses! But through all his adventures, Gulliver learns to see humans in a different way, too.
Pirates are everywhere—and they have been ever since boats were used as carriers. They are in stories ranging from Treasure Island through Peter Pan to Pirates of the Caribbean; they are in our imaginations with peg-legs, hook-hands, and parrots on their shoulders, saying "Aharr, me hearties!", and they continue to cause havoc in the Gulf of Aden in the 21st century.