Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (Classics) - Jules Verne This book is so close to my heart. It's the second time I've read this book, but it's as bold and beautiful, as memorable and deep as I felt it was the first time I read it. Nonetheless, I am filled with so many emotions right now upon completion of this book that I'm nearly at a loss for what to say. This story is one of adventure, indomitable and evoking so many sights of creation in your mind's fantasy! Your imagination is constantly at a whirl with this book! Half the time while reading it I wanted to be sitting near a computer to look up the fantastic and intricate names of the species of life found in this underwater world I've never before known possessed so many wonders! And the other half of the time, I chose not to because I was in awe, imagining the colors and designs of these wondrous creatures so very few of us ever think about, and could ever know. It is no fish tale, but a tale of wonder that makes any reader marvel, no matter how scientific it may seem. Though I did not myself understand many of the classifications and "fancy" names that were mentioned, it was all secondary to the amazing world that you were able to travel through for the first time on this journey beneath the oceans.

Yet while the greatest part of this tale is adventure and exploration of a world unknown, the other half is represented by its few, but remarkable main characters. Professor Aronnax, Conseil, Ned Land... and Captain Nemo, of the Nautilus. These first three characters create what you can fast see is a harmony between themselves that keeps the book flowing. Whenever one part may begin to get trying or dull, another one of the three comes in and will change the pace of the book, keeping it going. And while for some the classification and description of myriads of fish and plants may grow tiring, the infinite variety and pictures in my mind of these creatures are what make up a rainbow of realism and delight me in the more action-oriented parts of the tale. It is kept moving swiftly, and yet tells so many parts of a long story, that you are able to experience truly an entirely full realm of thoughts in a book so short for the many wonders it has certainly left out. After reading this, one can never look at the ocean the same way again, nor at the simplest of things that inhabit it. It brings a magnificence of life to something so taken for granted today by most of us, and the steady majesty with which it's presented gives one the sense that they have learned more than they ever could have before, once they come to the end of this seemingly "endless" tale.

For it does come to an end. And I assure those of you who may seem weary or tired by the informative and scientific aspect of the book that there is a... an ending like none you've ever seen. An ending with so many questions wrapped up in them, so much emotion... that your heart will be either pushed to the brink or torn and bursting with the violent, writhing feelings that come up in the last few chapters. It's as though every wonder, every beauty we saw was all just leading up to this ever growing mystery of who this captain is, of what submerged a man like Nemo under the waves and brought him to a point of no return like none other. There is deep meaning and feeling in him that lies so turbulent and inexpressible underneath the surface. He is more than just mystery: he is the jewel polished by every wave and crevasse, every turbulent instance, every wonder.... He is a conglomeration so complex and fascinating that I cannot imagine any heart could stand unmoved by him and his story. For every greatness in him there are an infinite number of threads that lead down to his core that remains so very faintly unveiled for us throughout the story. And I must say, it is for him and to learn more and more about him that I read the novel half the time. For without Nemo, without his hidden and yet tangible self right there before us, we would never have gone to the places we did, either physically through the imagination, or emotionally through his unfolding story. He is a driving force unlike any other captured in a single character. It is no lie that countless people have been urged on solely for a love and fascination of this man. It is he who makes our adventures so vivid, and worth more than what they seem.

No one who reads to the end of this book will be disappointed, except by a will to know more. To follow Captain Nemo down once more to the depths. Not to leave him. Or will you be glad to? *Smiles* That is the question you will know the answer to once you have ventured deep under the lands we know, far closer to life and peace than you ever imagined, into a marvel unlike you've ever experienced, all tied back to a single man, and his extraordinary life; his extraordinary story.

For those with a love of adventure, for those who seek mystery in places unsought-for, this tale will fill you with so many things that you will be left forever the wiser and more experienced by the journey you take. For it is not the end, but the journey with this man that makes this book magnificent. It only reflects what admiration and wonder I have for everything else about this book. It is so silly... and yet, I will forever sit here and think of him, one of these greatest characters of all time. I will count the years and know that I have no chance of meeting him. But oh... Nemo. My heart goes out to you, in love and devotion. Find peace, good sir. You are worth it.

This is worth it.