Around the World in Eighty Days
Author: Jules Verne
Page Length: 237
Reading Level: 6
PLOT SUMMARY: Phileas Fogg is a wealthy man who lives in London and belongs to the elite Reform Club. One evening at the club, Mr. Fogg makes a wager with several of the members that he can travel around the world in eighty days. He begins his trip, almost immediately with his employee, Passepartout.
Fogg plans to complete the trip by train and ship. The two men travel to Suez, Bombay, miss a train and buy an elephant to get through India. While in India, they rescue a Parsee woman from human sacrifice. Along the way, Passepartout becomes acquainted with Mr. Fix, a detective from London who suspects that Mr. Fogg has robbed a bank. Eventually, Mr. Fix joins the trio and completes the trip with them through Hong Kong, Shanhai, the United States and across the Atlantic.
The trip has many bumps in the road, but Mr. Fogg thinks he will arrive within the time frame to collect his wagers. However, in the end, he realizes he arrives forty-five minutes late… or does he?
REVIEW: Because the book was written in 1874, I would recommend it for reading as a class novel rather than independent reading for the teenager of the 21st century. The teacher would be able to incorporate instruction of vocabulary, descriptive writing, character development, and world geography in the reading.
AREAS FOR TEACHING: Cause/Effect, Characters, Vocabulary, Descriptive Writing, World Geography, Sequence of Events, Setting
RELATED BOOKS: Journey to the Center of the Earth, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
MOVIE & TV CONNECTIONS: Around the World in Eighty Days (1956, 2004), Around the World in Eighty Days-TV Mini-Series (1989)
REVIEWED BY: Shirley Wagner