Captain Blood Review
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I’m not proud of it, but it was the title of this book that got me. Captain Blood. Cool. If you’re looking for a really fun novel that will take you back to the days when you used to sit on the top bunk of your bunk beds and yell “Land-ho me hardies!” at the top of your little lungs, then you’ve come to the right place.

Captain Blood is the story of Peter Blood, a doctor by intention who simply can’t keep himself from getting involved in troublesome adventure. Called on in the midst of a rebellion against the king (a rebellion he specifically intended to stay out of) to aid a wounded rebel nobleman, Blood rushes to the rescue, only to end up arrested for treason, tried, and sentenced to death. Luckily for Blood, King James soon realizes that it’s far more profitable to sell these death-row inmates as colony slaves in Jamaica than to actually kill them. So Blood is sailed away to the Caribbean, where his talents as a doctor soon earn him greater freedom than the other slaves, and he quickly becomes indispensable to the gout-ridden governor to whom only Blood can offer relief.

  
 
Eventually, he escapes the island and begins his years as a wanted pirate captain. There are many other plot twists and conflicts to follow—all ripe with plank walking, cannon firing, ship sinking action.

The only down side—if there is one—is that there isn’t much to this book but one cliché pirate situation after another. There isn't much depth of character or complexity of emotion. Everything is simple, much in the campy style of Pirates of the Caribbean, though, in fairness to Sabatini, the book was written in 1922—before much of what is now cliché about action epics was ever done.

The book is a very fast, page-turning read, but as a classic, it falls short of any real long-standing relevance. There’s nothing particularly remarkable about the writing or the story. But, off the record, I loved it; I tend to enjoy these shallow, fun reads as much as I enjoy the deep, thought-provoking works of other classic authors. The choice is yours, and what it really comes down to is this: Have you read Treasure Island, The Swiss Family Robinson, Robin Hood or The Three Musketeers? Did you find yourself wanting to read more books like these? If so, then pick up a copy and enjoy!

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