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Captains Courageous (Illustrated Classic Editions)
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Captains Courageous (Illustrated Classic Editions)

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3.86 of 5 stars 3.86  ·  rating details  ·  11,501 ratings  ·  422 reviews
In a specially adapted version by Mitsu Yamamoto

During the storm at sea, Harvey Cheyne, a rich, spoiled teen-ager traveling to Europe, is swept overboard from the deck of an ocean liner near the Grand Banks off the coast of Newfoundland. Rescued by the fishing schooner, the We're Here, Harvey finds that neither his arrogant orders nor tales of his father's 30 million dolla
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Paperback, Illustrated Classic Editions,4536, 239 pages
Published 1983 by Moby Books/Playmore, Inc./I. Waldman & Sons (first published 1897)
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Adam K.
I read most of this aloud to my older boys as I was putting them to sleep at night, and I think that's probably the best way to navigate through Kipling's tale. It's a lot of fun, but if you're reading silently, not trying on the accents as Kipling's written them, I think you miss a lot. This book is chock full of sailing terms that Kipling never explains, nor does he provide a glossary, but I liked this. Much of the time, I didn't understand what the characters were talking about in their daily ...more
Michael Gerald Dealino
If you take a look at the informative channels on cable tv like National Geographic, Discovery, and Animal Planet, you will notice that there are a lot of programs about fishing. Deadliest Catch, Monster Fish, Wicked Tuna. Good to see fishermen plying their trade and makes one appreciate a job most people in cities do not give importance to.

But a century before these shows, there was a book that portrayed fishing and the folks whose lives depend on it. But it wasn't just a book about fishing; it
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Sara
I didn't really expect to love a sailor's story but clearly I didn't have any idea how much Leadership Education can be cultivated on the dangerous fishing lines of the Atlantic. The book is totally different than anything else I have read by Kipling. It is an American story (as opposed to his more typical Indian writing), high adventure, perfect for boys (I couldn't keep my 7 year old away) (not to say that girls wouldn't enjoy it too) and chock full of timeless lessons in how to become a real ...more
Sally
I enjoyed the plot and general storyline, but I got really bogged down in all the "sea-faring" talk and jargon. When Kipling wrote this one, readers obviously enjoyed learning all of these different, strange things through reading whereas now I'd rather watch 15 minutes of a documentary on the History Channel and be done.

Harvey is a spoiled, rotten brat of a teenager who delights in causing his mother to fret and his father to ignore him. When Harvey goes overboard a luxury steamer to land himse
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Anne
I read this book year's ago--in junior high school. I can't remember much--it was one of those adventure sort of novels that we were always reading to keep the boys involved in class. You know what I mean--Lord of the Flies, Call of the Wild, Adventures of Huck Finn...I read all of these when I was 12 or so. Only later in high school, did I delve into books more my taste, books not so decidedly action-adventure.

The only reason I'm writing this review, or even including this on my book shelf for
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Amy
Captains Courageous is a great story about how setting expectations upon kids, and making them work in order to find their own sense of self worth helps them to become courageous captains of their lives. I liked that a lot, especially since my sister and I are currently working on getting my nephew off the entitled/spoiled track and onto a more respectful path that requires him to meet some expectations and to exercise some self-control and discipline.

Unfortunately, Captains Courageous doesn't t
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Jean Poulos
When Rudyard Kipling was staying in Vermont in February 1896 he listened to the stories of the local physician telling about his time on a schooner thirty years before. That gave Kipling the idea to write “Captains Courageous.” Kipling said he tried to change his writing style for the book using allegory, parable, and metaphor to suit his subject.

The story of “Captains Courageous” like that of the earlier “Jungle Book” is of a boy who finds himself in a new environment and is profoundly affected
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Vince Hale
Like a lot of reviewers here I was SUPPOSED to read this book in grade school, but that never happened. I tried again my junior year of college and stopped 40 or 50 pages into it. So now at forty years old I decided I would finally read it cover-to-cover, no matter what. The copy that I read is literally the same 1964 version that I started some 30 years ago. The yellow pages and old-fashioned library smell of the book actually added to the experience.

When I finish a really good book I always fe
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Will
It is good to read the true classics now and then, and I had not read Kipling in a long time. Began this book on my phone, continued on my computer, and finally got this paperback copy at my local library, thank God. I have to say I find reading ebooks a particularly unsatisfactory experience.

As for the book, it is thoroughly enjoyable. I need not restate the plot, but I wonder how many of us living in the US today could live that kind of life, particularly young teenagers? I know there are kid
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Melissa
This was my first time reading this classic, or any Rudyard Kipling for that matter. It's hard to believe that I loved a book that was so full of fishing jargon that at times I had no idea what the author was talking about or what the characters were saying, but I did. I loved it. Every minute of it, even when I was clueless. I loved how quickly Harvey changed, how fast he realized he wasn't all that he thought he was, and how fast he decided to make the best of his new circumstances. It is a st ...more
Vince
I read this book because I had never read Kipling. It wa a poor choice as he is most known for his "India" writings and this was America but the story was good - if generally known - and the presentations of sea fishing life interesting (assuming they were correct).
The problem with this book for me was my inability to understand some of the jargon. This was read as a "free" Kindle version - transferred electronically to e-book format and many of the words were not known to me (nor the Kindle's d
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Frightful_elk
This book lets you have a marvellous look into life on a fishing boat, in the best boys adventure way.

However it does have some serious shortcomings, for one the sheer weight of unknown slang and fishing terms can make it rather obscure in places. Rather more problematic is the highly unlikely conversion of Harvey (our hero)a boy spoilt rotten his entire life, lazy, proud and disrespectful. It only takes being rescued by the crew of the 'We're Here' and a punch on the nose to be converted into a
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Cmdr Bly
it was a nice book but it has too many pictures
7jane
A story of how one 15-year-old rich boy's moment of bad luck changes his life, from spoiled brat to a mature, better person with solid values who can work well with others and doesn't need to prove his worth with questionable things and boasting.
Forced to spend a summer with fishermen (no radios or other ways to communicate where he is) - no chance that the men would drop him off after picking him up from the sea where he had fallen - he gets a good glimpse as he works with them of what their l
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Desmond White
Summary: An interesting sailing myth without pirates.

I didn't enjoy Captains Courageous as much as other Kipling fictions, but I still found it a satisfactory read. The protagonist Harvey Cheyne Jr. is set up perfectly to be a real brat (in the vein of C.S. Lewis' Eustace Scrubb) but that character defect is too quickly corrected at the beginning of the second act (much like Scrubb, incidentally). Boating jargon, while appreciated in small quantities, crushes the early adventures. However, for a
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Skye
Some spoilers, so watch out!

I finished this book in a little over a day! I sped through it unfortunately for some not-so-great reasons... The fishing jargon, the heavy accents, and my general ignorance about the daily experiences of cod fishermen made me read through chunks without really grasping much. That said, I still loved the book because I lived in Gloucester as a child, and watched the movie of this book more times than I can count. My curiosity to see how the book was different really f
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Keith Schnell
One of Rudyard Kipling's relatively few book-length works, Captains Courageous is the story of the spoiled son of a guilded age multimillionaire, who falls off of an ocean liner in the middle of the Atlantic and is rescued by the crew of a fishing trawler. They disbelieve his claims of wealth and privledge and refuse to deviate from their fishing season to bring him to shore, so he is pressed into service for the duration of the voyage and experiences significant personal growth. When he returns ...more
Amy
Captains Courageous by Rudyard Kipling is an adventure novel about a spoiled young boy who learns not to take things for granted. Harvey is a teenager who gets whatever he wants and whose father has millions of dollars to spare. He has no sense of compassion or practicality and hopes that the huge ocean liner he’s on with his mother runs over a small fishing boat. Too proud to show his seasickness, he ducks outside to get a breath of fresh air, and is swept overboard. Harvey is rescued by a smal ...more
Alfredalmond
I never meet up with a tale of the sea that I disapprove of? Why is that? Captain Courageous has the bratty rich lad who must grow up and add to society. You comprehend that immediately. The dialog is unusual to today's youth but if you read it as written you will follow...and follow you do as you see a young man come of age. My favorite quote might be a description on rolling seas..."A gentle, breathing swell, three furlongs from trough to barrel, would quietly shoulder up a string of variously ...more
Adam Cherson
I rate this book a 3.56 on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being best.
Whatever one may think of Kipling’s politics, as a storyteller he is among the best. Take for instance this description of Harvey Cheyne’s dad: "It began with a kinless boy turned loose in Texas, and went on fantastically through a hundred changes and chops of life, the scenes shifting from State after Western State, from cities that sprang up in a month and in a season utterly withered away, to wild ventures in wilder camps that are
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Stephanie "Jedigal"
A very nice coming-of-age tale of a wealthy young man, who is picked up by a fishing boat after falling off a passenger, and is "invited" to work for his living until the boat finishes its months-long working tour. Didn't seem exceptionally remarkable to me, but was definitely enjoyable.
Adobe
With the exception of the ubiquitous "Rikki-tikki-tavi," I think this is the first Kipling story I've read. I liked it a great deal. The plot concerns a spoiled rich kid who ends up on a fishing boat and learns the values of hard work. There's little of the philosophical baggage that weighed down London in The Sea Wolf; Kipling's only "message" is the promotion of an antediluvian vision of manly self-sufficiency, which is all par for the course in this genre.

The story is brisk and the character
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Rachel Lizan
When searching for a classic book for teens, many seemed either for children or adults but not in the middle. When I found this novel, it was a good fit for older teens. The main character, Harvey, is 15 years old and faces an adventure that students could only dream about happening to them. In the beginning, students will be put off by the main character’s status having a privileged life and wealthy parents. They may even be rooting for him to go overboard. However, once he is rescued and on th ...more
Kay Pelham
This was a hard read for me, as most sailing and other traveling books are. A few different dialects and accents (New Englanders, Irish, Portuguese, and more!) Kipling spelled out, and obsessive me tried to get them right. (I kept thinking Kennedys or "pahk the cah" to try to get the NEer right. An example of spelling is "naow" for "now".) After trying to pronounce them right, there was the translating of what in the world that person just said.

The sailing terms, and boat terms, and geography of
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Anthony Green
As one who has been spoiled by books like Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin series, C. S. Forester's "Hornblower" series, Jack London's "The Sea Wolf," and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's "The Captain of the Polestar," this was something of a disappointment. Okay, it was a huge disappointment. I generously gave it 3 stars, but it probably doesn't even deserve that many.

It's easy to see what Kipling was TRYING to do in Captains Courageous, but (in my opinion), it was very poorly — even clumsily — execute
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Massie
This was an awful literature circle book. I dont know why i even started reading it. It was horribly bad. Dont even read it unless ur into water, boring, fish, water, boring, and WATER AND BORING!!!!!!!!!!!!!
James
Listened to Librivox.org podcast. Another book I missed in my yout(h). Learned a bit about fishermen and fishing in the Grand Banks in late 1800s. And of course, Kipling's moral codes.
Raynor Moore
I loved reading this as a boy. There's always been something captivating about these stories of actually doing the smart thing and being successful because of that. All of Kipling's books that I've read reflect this trend, as do the juvenile Heinlein books, and I devoured as many of both as I could acquire at a young age.

Oh, and who cares if the nautical terms aren't explained. Learning to read involves plenty of guess work on word definitions anyway and there's more than enough here to captiva
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Jonathan Howell
A nice little book, but not the classic story I was expecting. I was constantly drawing parallels between this and Jack London's "Sea Wolf" -- privileged man rescued by merchant ship and forced to work alongside the men, building character in the process. However, where London uses a dramatic storyline and conflict to demonstrate the protagonist's transformation, Kipling simply tacked on extra chapters at the end that describe the new protagonist.

I enjoyed the description of sea life, the colorf
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John P
First - I have the Kindle version, but it's not the Kindle version offered as one of the selections in Goodreads. The Kindle cover looks like this paperback cover. There are a couple (at least) typos in my version which I have to believe are related to the conversion from print to electronic format.

Anyway, on to the story. As I presume Kipling had no hands-on experience as a Grand Banks fisherman, I have to wonder how he created such a seemingly authentic cast of characters drenched in a world f
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Awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1907 "in consideration of the power of observation, originality of imagination, virility of ideas and remarkable talent for narration which characterize the creations of this world-famous author."

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rudyard_...
More about Rudyard Kipling...
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“It does not matter what people think of a man after his death.” 7 likes
“It was the forty-fathom slumber that clears the soul and eye and heart, and sends you to breakfast ravening. They emptied a big tin dish of juicy fragments of fish- the blood-ends the cook had collected overnight. They cleaned up the plates and pans of the elder mess, who were out fishing, sliced pork for the midday meal, swabbed down the foc'sle, filled the lamps, drew coal and water for the cook, an investigated the fore-hold, where the boat's stores were stacked. It was another perfect day - soft, mild and clear; and Harvey breathed to the very bottom of his lungs.” 2 likes
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