I decided 2004 would be the year I started reading again. I love the idea of Jules Vernes fantastic novels and I loved the film of Journey to The Center of the Earth, so I thought I'd give 20000 leagues a shot.

I must admit to being a little disappointed. The novel was very technical with great swathes of text dedicated to over long descriptions of the undersea flora and fauna. The real adventures came in fits and starts. I guess that the way the story was told made it so much more believable and I see why it's a classic - not because it's exciting but because it feels so real.

The first encounter with the Nautilus, being trapped in an iceberg at the South Pole and the battle with the giant squid were all edge of the seat stuff. The enigma that is Nemo was also beautifully told. I think my disappointment is in it not being what I had expected.