Tuesday, 5 February 2013

The Blue Eyed Aborigine

Jan Pelgrom is an ordinary Dutch cabin boy on a ship called the Bactavia which is advancing to Java. When the ship sinks, Jan is stranded on an island with the Under Merchant of the ship, Cornilez. Cornilez dreams of power and punishes all traitors, and even turns Jan into his personal servant! This is the first half of this brilliant book but the second half is even more exciting and shocking. Stranded on an island with Wouter (a soldier) and lots of aborigines, Jan is forced to hunt for food to survive. As Wouter leaves camp to find food, Jan becomes friendly with the aboriginal tribes and an unexpectected incident leaves them together forever.
This shocking and gripping story is based on the true tale of the Bactavia and although the life-like and funny characters are not real, the events are.

My favourite part of this story is the start which is full of intriguing (not boring) descriptions that kept me interested throughout. The very first sentence got me excited as I kept wondering what Jan would be like. Although the first half of the story is told in third person, the second half  is told in first person, with the storyteller alternating between Jan and Wouter. This interesting style of writing kept me hooked. It definitely sparked a personal and heart-felt feel to the story.
I didn't like some parts in the second half of the book when Jan gets up close to an aboriginal girl. This romantic theme was clear throughout the second half and although there was a lot of it, it was written in a normal and not over-dramatized way. This meant, I din't spend any time at all gripping my teeth and rolling my eyes. Apart from the romantic element, I preferred the second half of this book to the first, probably because of the different style of writing.
Overall, this is an incredible historical fiction book which I really enjoyed and recommend it to people aged 10-14.
****(and a half)

No comments:

Post a Comment