Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

( 679 )

Overview

Follow along on this fantastic voyage as Professor Arronax, Ned, and Beth set out to capture a terrifying sea monster--before it captures them.

An adaptation of the nineteenth-century science fiction tale of an electric submarine, its eccentric captain, and the undersea world, which anticipated many of the scientific achievements of the twentieth century.

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Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

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Overview

Follow along on this fantastic voyage as Professor Arronax, Ned, and Beth set out to capture a terrifying sea monster--before it captures them.

An adaptation of the nineteenth-century science fiction tale of an electric submarine, its eccentric captain, and the undersea world, which anticipated many of the scientific achievements of the twentieth century.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

KLIATT
A mysterious creature is roaming the oceans, wreaking havoc on ships. Professor Aronnax, a professor of natural history, joins the crew of the American frigate American Lincoln. Its mission: destroy the sea-beast. Unfortunately the professor, his servant and the ship's harpooner are washed overboard during an encounter with the beastie. They take refuge on its back, which turns out to be a submarine, and become the reluctant guests of Captain Nemo, the master of the Nautilus. Thus begins a journey across the Seven Seas, in the course of which they reach the South Pole, rediscover the sunken continent of Atlantis and engage in a number of sea battles. In the end the Professor and his companions escape; the Nautilus sinks into the Maelstrom, its final fate unknown. This is a fine adaptation of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Whigham's b/w art is action-oriented and very busy; it does a good job of enlivening Verne's novel, which at time resembles an underwater travel video. The visualization of Captain Nemo, the book's most intriguing character, is particularly good; he is both noble and tormented. Contains comic book violence (most notably a battle with a giant squid); recommended for all readers. KLIATT Codes: JSA—Recommended for junior and senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2006, Penguin, Puffin, 176p. illus., Ages 12 to adult.
—George Galuschak
From the Publisher
"Unbearably thrilling and romantic... full of Verne's gentle humour."
—Daily Mail

"Among the deep-sea vocanoes, shoals of swirling fish, giant squid and sharks, Captain Nemo steers the Nautilus. Nemo is the renegade scientist par excellence, a man madly inventive in his quest for revenge."
—Sunday Telegraph

"A tale of terror, suspense and wonder."
—Guardian

Matt Travers
The appearance of this sumptuously produced twenty-first century edition of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea will delight the countless admirers of Jules Verne.

—Matt Travers
From Barnes & Noble
A pioneer of the now immensely popular genre of fiction we call science fiction, Jules Verne wrote startling adventure stories that not only vividly captured the imagination of the 19th-century reading public, but are still read avidly today. Filled with wondrous voyages, marvelous semi-scientific equipment, and warnings not to tamper too much with the natural order, his novels are not only universally popular, but have proved to be uncannily prophetic. Here are four of Verne's most enthralling stories: 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, The Mysterious Island, Journey To The Center Of The Earth, and Around The World In 80 Days. Each one explores different themes, but all share one in common: man's exploration of the dark unknown.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781604441680
  • Publisher: IndoEuropeanPublishing
  • Publication date: 3/23/2010
  • Pages: 230
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.48 (d)

Meet the Author

Jules Verne

French writer Jules Verne (February 8, 1828 - March 24, 1905) pioneered the science fiction literary genre. He published many plays, essays, short stories, and poems during his lifetime, but is best known for Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Around the World in 80 Days, and A Journey to the Center of the Earth. Today, he is one of the most translated authors in the world.

Biography

The creator of the roman scientifique, the popular literary genre known today as science fiction, Jules Gabriel Verne was born in the port town of Nantes, France, in 1828. His father, Pierre, was a prominent lawyer, and his mother, Sophie, was from a successful ship-building family. Despite his father's wish that he pursue law, young Jules was fascinated by the sea and all things foreign and adventurous. Legend holds that at age eleven he ran away from school to work aboard a ship bound for the West Indies but was caught by his father shortly after leaving port. Jules developed an abiding love of science and language from a young age. He studied geology, Latin, and Greek in secondary school, and frequently visited factories, where he observed the workings of industrial machines. These visits likely inspired his desire for scientific plausibility in his writing and perhaps informed his depictions of the submarine Nautilus and the other seemingly fantastical inventions he described.

After completing secondary school, Jules studied law in Paris, as his father had before him. However, during the two years he spent earning his degree, he developed more consuming interests. Through family connections, he entered Parisian literary circles and met many of the distinguished writers of the day. Inspired in particular by novelists Victor Hugo and Alexandre Dumas (father and son), Verne began writing his own works. His poetry, plays, and short fiction achieved moderate success, and in 1852 he became secretary of the Théâtre lyrique. In 1857 he married Honorine Morel, a young widow with two children. Seeking greater financial security, he took a position as a stockbroker with the Paris firm Eggly and Company. However, he reserved his mornings for writing. Baudelaire's recently published French translation of the works of Edgar Allan Poe, as well as the days Verne spent researching points of science in the library, inspired him to write a new sort of novel: the roman scientifique. His first such novel, Five Weeks in a Balloon, was an immediate success and earned him a publishing contract with the important editor Pierre-Jules Hetzel.

For the rest of his life, Verne published an average of two novels a year; the fifty-four volumes published during his lifetime, collectively known as Voyages Extraordinaires, include his best-known works, Around the World in Eighty Days and Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. Begun in 1865 and published to huge success in 1869, Twenty Thousand Leagues has been translated into 147 languages and adapted into dozens of films. The novel also holds the distinction of describing a submarine twenty-five years before one was actually constructed. As a tribute to Verne, the first electric and nuclear submarines were named Nautilus. In 1872 Verne settled in Amiens with his family. During the next several years he traveled extensively on his yachts, visiting such locales as North Africa, Gibraltar, Scotland, and Ireland. In 1886 Verne's mentally ill nephew shot him in the leg, and the author was lame thereafter. This incident, as well as the tumultuous political climate in Europe, marked a change in Verne's perspective on science, exploration, and industry. Although not as popular as his early novels, Verne's later works are in many ways as prescient. Touching on such subjects as the ill effects of the oil industry, the negative influence of missionaries in the South Seas, and the extinction of animal species, they speak to concerns that remain urgent in our own time.

Verne continued writing actively throughout his life, despite failing health, the loss of family members, and financial troubles. At his death in 1905 his desk drawers contained the manuscripts of several new novels. Jules Verne is buried in the Madeleine Cemetery in Amiens.

Author biography from the Barnes & Noble Classics edition of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.

Good To Know

In 1848, Verne got his start writing librettos for operettas.

When Verne's father found out that his son would rather write than study law, he cut him off financially, and Jules was forced to support himself as a stockbroker -- a job he hated but was fairly good at. During this period, he sought advice and inspiration from authors Alexandre Dumas and Victor Hugo.

Verne stands as the most translated novelist in the world -- 148 languages, according to UNESCO statistics.

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    1. Date of Birth:
      February 8, 1828
    2. Place of Birth:
      Nantes, France
    1. Date of Death:
      March 24, 1905
    2. Place of Death:
      Amiens, France
    1. Education:
      Nantes lycée and law studies in Paris

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

A Shifting Reef

The year 1866 was marked by a strange event, an unexplainable occurrence which is undoubtedly still fresh in everyone's memory. Those living in coastal towns or in the interior of continents were aroused by all sorts of rumors; but it was seafaring people who were particularly excited. Merchants, shipowners, skippers and masters of Europe and America, naval officers of all countries and the various governments of both continents were deeply concerned over the matter.

Several ships had recently met at sea “an enormous thing,” a long slender object which was sometimes phosphorescent and which was infinitely larger and faster than a whale.

The facts concerning this apparition, entered in various logbooks, agreed closely with one another as to the structure of the object or creature in question, the incredible speed of its movements, the surprising power of its locomotion and the strange life with which it seemed endowed. If it was a member of the whale family, it was larger than any so far classified by scientists. Neither Cuvier, Lacépède, Dumeril nor Quatrefages would have admitted that such a monster could exist--unless they had seen it with their own scientists' eyes.

Taking an average of observations made at different times'and rejecting those timid evaluations which said the object was only two hundred feet long, and also putting aside those exaggerated opinions which said it was a mile wide and three miles long'one could nevertheless conclude that this phenomenal creature was considerably larger than anything at that time recognized by ichthyologists'if it existed at all.

But it didexist--there was no denying this fact any longer--and considering the natural inclination of the human brain toward objects of wonder, one can understand the excitement produced throughout the world by this supernatural apparition. In any case, the idea of putting it into the realm of fiction had to be abandoned.

On July 20, 1866, the steamer Governor Higginson of the Calcutta and Burnach Steam Navigation Company had encountered this moving mass five miles east of the Australian coast. Captain Baker first thought he had sighted an unknown reef; he was even getting ready to plot its exact position when two columns of water spurted out of the inexplicable object and rose with a loud whistling noise to a height of a hundred and fifty feet. So, unless the reef contained a geyser, the Governor Higginson was quite simply in the presence of an unknown aquatic mammal, spurting columns of water mixed with air and vapor out of its blowholes.

A similar thing was observed on July 23 of the same year in Pacific waters, by the Christopher Columbus of the West India and Pacific Steam Navigation Company. This extraordinary creature could therefore move from one place to another with surprising speed, since within a space of only three days, the Governor Higginson and the Christopher Columbus had sighted it at two points on the globe separated by more than 2100 nautical miles.

Two weeks later and six thousand miles from this last spot, the Helvetia of the Compagnie Nationale and the Shannon of the Royal Mail Steamship Company, passing on opposite courses in that part of the Atlantic lying between the United States and Europe, signaled one another that they had sighted the monster at 42° 15' N. Lat. and 60° 35' W. Long. In this simultaneous observation they felt able to judge the creature's minimum length at more than 350 feet, since it was larger than both ships each of which measured 330 feet over-all. But the largest whales, the Kulammak and Umgullick that live in the waters around the Aleutian Islands, never exceed 180 feet in length, if that much.

These reports arriving one after the other, with fresh observations made on board the liner Le Pereire, a collision between the Etna of the Inman Line and the monster, an official report drawn up by the officers of the French frigate Normandie, and a very reliable sighting made by Commodore Fitz-James' staff on board the Lord Clyde, greatly stirred public opinion. In lighthearted countries, people made jokes about it, but in serious practical-minded countries, such as England, America and Germany, it was a matter of grave concern.

In every big city the monster became the fashion: it was sung in cafés, derided in newspapers and discussed on the stage. Scandal sheets had a marvelous opportunity to print all kinds of wild stories. Even ordinary newspapers--always short of copy--printed articles about every huge, imaginary monster one could think of, from the white whale, the terrible “Moby Dick” of the far north, to the legendary Norse kraken whose tentacles could entwine a five-hundred-ton ship and drag it to the bottom. Reports of ancient times were mentioned, the opinions of Aristotle and Pliny who admitted to the existence of such monsters, along with those of the Norwegian bishop, Pontoppidan, Paul Heggede and finally Mr. Harrington, whose good faith no one can question when he claims to have seen, while on board the Castillan in 1857, that enormous serpent which until then had been seen in no waters but those of the old Paris newspaper, the Constitutionnel.

It was then that in scientific societies and journals an interminable argument broke out between those who believed in the monster and those who did not. The “question of the monster” had everyone aroused. Newspapermen, who always pretend to be on the side of scientists and against those who live by their imagination, spilled gallons of ink during this memorable campaign; and some even spilled two or three drops of blood, after arguments that had started over sea serpents and ended in the most violent personal insults.

For six months this war was waged with varying fortune. Serious, weighty articles were published by the Brazilian Geographical Institute, the Royal Scientific Academy of Berlin, the British Association and the Smithsonian Institute in Washington; others appeared in the Indian Archipelago, in Abbé Moigno's Cosmos, in Petermann's Mittheilungen and in the science sections of all the important newspapers of France and other countries.

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Copyright © by Jules Verne. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 679 )
Rating Distribution

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(330)

4 Star

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(92)

2 Star

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 681 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2006

    Don't buy this book!

    If you're going to read one of the great classics of literature¿and you should¿don't pick up this edition. It is a reprint of a version that dates back to the 1870s and was exposed more than 40 years ago for cutting nearly one-quarter of Verne's story and mistranslating much of the remainder. Lewis Mercier was the man responsible for this travesty, yet the publisher tries to conceal what they've done by claiming the translation is by an anonymous hand. An attempt is made to give the volume respectability by adding an introduction and notes by Victoria Blake¿who has no particular credentials for the task. And that leads to goofs¿for instance, she claims Verne never wrote a novel about invisibility, so she mustn't know about the author's Secret of Wilhelm Storitz. In fact, Blake's simply used the better editions that readers are advised to consult. If you want to read Verne's novel, pick up the elegant Naval Institute Press edition, in a modern, complete, updated translation, with commentary by the leading American Verne expert today, Walter James Miller. That book also comes with many of the artistic engravings that illustrated the original French first edition (no illustrations are to be found in the B&N Mercier reprint). Less attractive but more academic is the Oxford Classics version of Twenty Thousand Leagues. Either way, pick one of these to discover this novel, and don't be fooled by the appearance of respectability this book provides. This review is posted on behalf of the North American Jules Verne Society by Jean-Michel Margot, president NAJVS.

    77 out of 91 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    A TRUE CLASSIC

    I truly thought that the book had one of the best plot lines I've ever seen, reguardless of the fact that there is only slight building up to the climax. The only thing that I didn't think was that good about the book was that about every other page, Jules Verne would go into a paragraph description of the animals. For example, he would say something like: "I just saw a tuna. But not the normal tuna, it was yellow-bellied, had dorsal fins that went at a downward angle, etc." Otherwise, I thought it was a great read and well worth the money. I will be purchasing more of Jules Verne's books very soon. I highly suggest for you to read this book. Another thing, if you enjoyed watching the 1954 "20,000 Leagues Under The Sea Film," I highly suggest the book because the movie only gives a small picture of what actually occurred during their submarine venture and the book tells you everything, and the occurrences are just amazing.<BR/>The novel basically tells the story of Professor Arronax, Ned Land and Conseil who get taken aboard the Nautilus and experiences many adverntures, such as going to Atlantis, an underwater hunt, getting trapped in an ice block and much more. This book is and, IMO, always will be a true classic.

    16 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2012

    Lovve it

    I am only 11 Iove it this is my favorite book of all time!!!!!!!!

    12 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2011

    Perfect format

    This version contains foot and end notes that are easy to navigate and well formatted. Great ebook!

    11 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2012

    Anonymous

    A greatbook if you like classics. It has good end notes at in the back. It loaded quickly, too.

    10 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    More than 20,000 wonders under the sea.

    The book, Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea by Jules Verne, follows the travels of Professor Pierre Aronnax and the mysterious Captain Nemo through the only frontier on Earth that though sailed by man for thousands of years, but yet unknown to us to this day, the sea. The wonders that Professor Aronnax witnesses on this under sea voyage may only be found in the realm of our imaginations, but still may for a good story that will endure for generations to come.

    7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2011

    Great

    Its freeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

    6 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 28, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Great Story, check other editions

    I usually love the B&N collections. The introductions included are great many of the times (not always), the annotations are a great saver for the modern reader to be able to decipher most of the "dense" paragraphs that without a background knowledge cannot understand. The questions, inspired by and such sections are usually a great addition as well. And finding all of this in one neat little package is great that my library at home is filled with them. Now with that out of my chest, It's really not worth to read this version of such a great story.
    Jules Verne is known as one of the fathers of science fiction genre and justice was not done to such a great master of words in this edition.

    The story is creative, innovative and breathtaking. There are extremely long descriptions but which really allows the writer to imagine what is on the paper into a reality very clearly. The plot is interesting and the characters develops nicely, always amply supplied by mystery and intrigue. The ending is open-ended which leads to the writing of another novel, which is a must read for any science fiction lovers.

    Invest your money in buying a proper edition of this book without any omitted chapters, scenes, paragraphs and a better translation which will serve you better both personally and academically.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 15, 2011

    MUST READ!

    If you have not been fortunate enough to have read Jules Verne in school, you MUST do so now. I have read this book several times, and I enjoy it each time I do so. The brilliance of Jules Verne comes through in his writing of the future. It's hard to imagine the vision necessary to portray future technology so accurately.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 23, 2010

    A True Classic, and Pleasure to Read

    This was the first Jules Verne book I've ever read, and I eagerly look forward to tackling his other works. My imagination was whisked away from the moment the hypothesized narwhale began its assaults through the final conclusions of Professor Aronnax. Certainly on more than one occasion, I was so immersed in Verne's world pictured so exquisitely, I found myself staying up late at night just so I could complete my push through events and circumstances from which I wouldn't simply walk away for the night. Honestly, while I understand the purpose of its inclusion, I could have gone for less of the scientifically-focused classification of the various fauna and flora: these passages seemed a bit tedious for my liking, and I found myself moving hastily through them. That said, the predominant bulk of this novel captured all senses as though I, too, found myself a fortunate captive of the Nautilus.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2013

    Book

    I LOVE THIS BOOK ! DON'T LISTEN TO THE INSULTS OF THIS BOOK BECAUSE THEY DON'T KNOW HOW TO IMAGINE THINGS WHILE READING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 12, 2012

    Twenty Thousand Leagues A Must Read at All Ages

    The one regret I have in reading Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne is that I did not read it sooner. I turned to it later in life, not having read it during my school years and have found it to be exceeding well written, inspiring, informative, and entertaining.

    Captain Nemo is a character not soon forgotten as it his submarine craft, the Nautilus. The descriptions of the ship, its inner cabins, and its mechanics is quite remarkable even today. The ability to generate electricity from the sea is something worth exploring more fully even in today’s world of natural gas, oil, wind, and solar power. The entire concept was way ahead of its time. I image that is why it is a classic.

    I not only recommend this selection as a must read, I advocate its being required reading at the high school or middle school level. It will spark the imagination of those who read and think about it and quite possibly motivate young people to explore their natural world through the studies of math and science. Overall, this is a wonderfully exciting book that is an excellent foundation for writers, thinkers, and would be scientists and adventures.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2012

    Good book for a free classic

    A very good book, suprisingly. Does not have spelling and grammar issues, and the plot is good and not very boring. Lots of scientific facts make this book very detailed and realistic. I would recommend this book to anyone who is an adept reader with an expanded vocabulary and who loves classics. As an eleven-year-old, I feel comfortable in saying that most kids in seventh grade and up would enjoy this classic.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2012

    Does it get better?

    Good so far and btw whats up with all this clan crap?

    3 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 20, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    You speak rubbish!!!

    A classic never has flaws and deserves 5 starts. ALWAYS!

    3 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2013

    Not the best

    If you like classic read this. If you don't like classics don't read it read Little Women by Louisa May Allcot that is better.
    Try it

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2012

    Awsome :)

    Awsome you really feel like your there. One for my favortive books. I love this book!!!!!!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2012

    Anonymous

    I read this three years ago. Love it! Most of my friends have read it also. I'm recommending this book to everyone out there who hasn't read it. If you want to read a book, read this one. The first chapter might be boring, but the rest makes you never want to put it down. Read it, you'll love it.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2012

    Well this was a great adventure story

    I really liked this story i found it stimulating to the imagination and didnt know what to think till the end of the book. Its a great book to read for those interested in a good adventure story. At some points it makes you think when facts are stated. The characters are understanable and kinda relateable in their situation. I think this is a book any one can enjoy. I really would recommend reading this book.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2011

    Is this good?

    I bet this is gonna b good!!!

    2 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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