Year: 1886
Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
Length: 158 minutes / 2.63 hours

Another one of those “short adventures” that I have finally gotten around to reading, Kidnapped doesn’t suffer from some of the attributes that I found irritating about Captains Courageous. Sure, some of my qualms with Captains Courageous came from the audiobook itself but Kidnapped managed to have an easy-to-understand narrator as well as some sound effects and music that added to the experience of the book. As for the book itself, Kidnapped is pretty basic despite its title being only a small fraction of its plot.

Even despite its short length, a lot happens in Kidnapped. Aside from the obvious kidnapping, many events transpired because of it, including escaping and returning home. Of course, partly because of the short length of the book, the action moves at a pretty quick pace that was sometimes difficult to follow (which may also be an artifact of the time when it was written). The language in this book was easy to understand and is appropriate for young boys who want to dip their toe in the wide world of reading.

Part of me almost wanted the plot to focus more on the kidnapping since that’s what I expected the book to be about. Of course, perhaps my preferences are tainted by modern literature and the almost over-explanation of situations and scenarios. Kidnapped does a lot, but if it went more in depth with a few of the main points, it could have been a little more fascinating. As it is, the kidnapping itself happens so quickly that the reader hardly has time to understand what has happened before the main character has escaped. A little more time spent in the midst of the kidnapping would have added some excellent tension to an already adequate book.

A good short story for all ages, I give Kidnapped 3.5 stars out of 5.

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