I didn't know what to expect when I started reading Kevin J. Anderson's Captain Nemo. At the Salt Lake Comic Con last April I was honored to be on a panel with the prolific international bestselling author and, of all the books of his we discussed, I was intrigued by this one most of all (don't worry--he left his nameplate after the discussion and "somehow" it ended up with me...
I bought his book. He signed it. I read it, and today I finished it.
As I dug deeper into the story, I was impressed by the way Anderson invited me into a world we all know, and yet, hardly know at all. The story centers on three characters, Jules Verne, André Nemo, and Caroline Aronnax. We meet them as children and as the last page turns, the three have each lived amazing lives. We experience their joys, heartaches, triumphs and failures, each flawed, each having overcome their demons.
What I liked most about this story is the seemless way Anderson weaves fact and fiction and fictional facts into a tale that, though spellbinding, makes sense--especially in the worlds created by Jules Verne.
I think someone with the success of Anderson can understand what it must be like to put himself into the mind of Verne, a man able to produce amazing amounts of work, but in this story, still wishes he could be the man he idolizes, the man he creates and elevates to almost God-like status. Personally, I don't know if Anderson wishes he could live within the adventures he creates. Then again, I think we all dream of changing reality and becoming the hero of our own imaginations.
I believe fans of Jules Verne's fantastical adventures will have the most fun with this book. However, you don't have to have read them all to understand the book's charm. I don't know if I'll ever have the opportunity to visit with Mr. Anderson in person, but if I do, I'll be sure to thank him for a very enjoyable 462 pages of reading enjoyment.