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» » Captains Courageous (Great Illustrated Classics)
Captains Courageous (Great Illustrated Classics)


Ken Landgraf,Rudyard Kipling


Captains Courageous (Great Illustrated Classics)


Children's Books

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1467 kb

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1527 kb

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1145 kb

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Spotlight (January 1, 2002)




Literature and Fiction

Buy Hardcover:


Captains Courageous (Great Illustrated Classics) by Ken Landgraf,Rudyard Kipling

After being swept overboard from an ocean liner, fifteen-year-old Harvey Cheyne, spoiled son of a millionaire, is rescued by New England fishermen who put him to work on their boat.
I have read both the Townsend Library version and the original version of Captains Courageous, and I have enjoyed and appreciated both versions. Purchasers of the Townsend Library version need to understand that this version is not "dumbed down" but simply translated into modern, accessible English. As such, it loses some of the original charm and flavor of Kipling's original novel, but it also gains substantially in overall readability. The original version of Captains Courageous is extraordinarily "dialect heavy", which can make it a chore to read.

Here's a comparison of a section of dialog:

Original version: "Suit yourself. We stole it ef it's any comfort to you. Naow, abaout going back. Allowin' we could do it it, which we can't, you ain't in no fit state to go back to your home, an' we've jest come on to the Banks workin' fer our bread. We don't see ha'af of a hundred dollars a month, let alone pocket-money; an' with good luck we'll be ashore again somewhere abaout the first weeks o' September."

Townsend version: "Suit yourself. We stole it if it's any comfort to you. Now, about goin' back to New York. Allowin' we could do it, which we can't, you ain't in no good shape to go back to your home, and we've jest come to the Grand Banks workin' fer our money. We don't see the half of a hundred dollars a month, let alone extra spending money. With good luck, we'll be ashore again somewhere around the first weeks o' September."

The speaker here is Disko Troop, one of the *clearer* speakers in this novel. What happens, with Kipling and this particular novel, is that the dialect can become a slog for just about anyone -- such a slog that the story is hard to follow. I'm pleased with the Townsend "translation", and I think for many who are new to this story (whether they are young readers or mature readers), the Townsend version might not be a bad place to start. The Townsend version retains enough of the dialect to retain the flavor of the Gloucester crew without bogging the reader down with heavy dialect every step of the way.
Refreshing; a transport back to a time and place when hard work is required, children mature quickly, reversals of fortune are dramatic, and where the least of us has an important role to play in the overall scheme of things. Life aboard a commercial fishing vessel in the nineteenth century was brutal: requiring hard, hard work, sleeplessness, constant physical danger, unforgiving conditions, and where the workplace is populated by sturdy, ruthless people. Big business interests, similarly. A story of survival at the school of hard knocks.
just one girl
This is a great story, a classic. However, the publisher (I'm assuming) managed to have a TON of typographical errors which made the story harder to read, especially since it is in a vernacular that is already difficult to follow. Great story, but I would look for a copy from another publisher.
Great Kids book! Teaches a good lesson! Found out in an interview that Levar Burton found this book to be pivotal to him as a young reader so I got a picture with him holding it.
Heavily edited to about a 3rd grade level. I am giving a low rating because the description said "This collector-quality edition includes the complete text of Rudyard Kipling's classic tale."
Third graders can enjoy this cleverly written classic. It teaches about a natural desire to be accepted, and to develop a positive attitude towards hard work can bring personal satisfaction.
Once in a lifetime one discovers a piece of literature that is timeless and relevant. Kipling is well known for his storytelling, but this work exceeds the story, which is brilliant, and enters into the realm of growth, from boy to man.
Whether from boy to man or girl to woman, this work is a shining light - a beacon of guidance,
I first read this at age 16. at age 75, with a permanent copy on my shelf, and now an e-copy on my phone, i have lost count of the number of times i have read it.
This book, old fashioned as it is, still sends tingles up my spine withs it's presentation of values for living in a world of madness and mayhem.
Rod Moore
This book is an enjoyable read, and I wish I had read it when I was young. Most kids can't get their heads out of their devices, and have a narrow temperature zone of comfort of three degrees, can't tie a single-knot, can't use a knife, hammer, or close a screen door, and say they are hungry when in fact they just ate two hours ago. This book can reset the perspective of many.

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