Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Book Review: Five On A Treasure Island by Enid Blyton

Author: Enid Blyton
Publisher: Hodder Children's Books
Published: June 2001
ISBN: 978-0340796146
Rating: 5/5


I remember my mom offered me the famous five series years ago when I was a kid. At that time, I have traveled to a lot of Conan Doyle's world and Agatha Christie's. Maybe that was why I didn't like famous five. It looked like a piece of cake. Too sweet. So, my mom gave away her famous five's collections.

Few days ago, my lecture gave me an assignment to read a detective or crime work by a woman author. Of course I chose Agatha Christie, automatically. I have a bunch of her collections in my room and I don't need to re-read them again, maybe just skimming. But, my friend suggested the famous five by Enid Blyton. Well, I think I'd like to read it. Famous five series only consists of 21 books, so why not? Since it's children's book, I didn't find any difficulty in understanding the words. Even though some words, or the writing style, is a little bit weird for me. I don't know if it's because it's a British work or because it's an old work. Overall I really enjoyed this book.

On this book, I get to know the characters. There are Julian the oldest, Dick, and Anne. They are siblings who are thirst of adventure. One holiday, their parents suggest them to visit their cousin, Georgina who lives at Kirrin Bay. Unfortunately, Georgina, who prefers to be called as George, is a difficult person. She likes to spend times by herself. She almost look like her father who hates to be disturbed. Unlike them, the mother, Aunt Fanny, is very lovely and understanding. She hopes Julian, Dick, and Anne can change her daughter's behavior.

Of course they do! They're finally getting along and George even bring them to her private island. Near the island, there is a shipwreck which belongs to George's great-great-great grandfather. The four children take an interesting box from the captain cabin and find a map which shows where the ingots--the gold--is hidden. They start their adventure under the castle. But, they have to deal with some men who are chasing the gold too! Those men even kidnap Julian and George. Will they be alright?

Well, of course they are alright. I can't imagine if there is something happen to them, then Enid Blyton probably will not have the others 20 titles of this series. But, the interesting things are how those children react to the problems. Like Julian. He is all parents' dream son. He is perfect with his attitude and his emotion. He can make people around him feel safe and comfortable. He is the kind of character that every girl would love to have as a brother. While Dick, the younger, is a cry baby. It's a little weird for me when Blyton stated that because Dick is the bravest! He is the one with a big excitement of adventures. Oh, it must be lovely to have him as a best friend. Your life will not be boring.

And the girls... I don't really like Anne. She's so typical. She is all the society wants as a girl. She likes playing with doll and she can't keep a secret (well, not in purpose, but still annoying for me). On the other hand, George the boyish is amazing. I think I like her because we're both the only child in the family. I think I know how she feels. But, she definitely has more exciting life than I am. She's a great swimmer, she drives the boat better than any other boys, and how she insisted that the island is hers makes me feel "Yeah, beat them!!"

But the best thing from this book is the messages. Oh, God! I wish I said yes to my mom back then. I feel like my head is filled by "dark" things and tendency to love a not-happy-ending. I blamed my mom for that because she's the one who introduces me to Sherlock and Poirot. And how could she become a kind woman and not so "dark" like me? That's because she read famous five too! The first book teaches us the importance of sharing.

"You can take from us," said Julian, trying to put the ice into George's brown hand. "We're your cousins." (Chapter 3)

And it also teaches us that saying sorry is all that matter. Like when Anne almost reveal George's secret to Aunt Fanny.

"I'm sorry I nearly made a mistake, George," she said. "Here's your bread and cheese. I've brought it for you. I promise I'll never forget not to mention Tim again." (Chapter 4)
... "you needn't take me, of course. But you might take the boys, George. After all, they didn't do anything silly. And anyway, you gave me an awful kick. Look at the bruise." (Chapter 4)

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