You know, I never really read the Tintin books that much when I was a kid. I read a few, sure, but I can't really remember them. I was more of an Asterix man myself. Still, I saw this book in the library the other day, and I just had to borrow it. It's every man-boy's dream. Adventure, mystery, guns, a drunk sea captain and a dog.
Little did I know that Flight 714 is the penultimate (finished) book in the series. As such all the characters are introduced as if they're my old friends, but I had vague memories of most of them, so it was okay. The plot follows Tintin, Haddock and Professor Calculus as they journey to Australia, only to be invited onto a private plane by an eccentric millionaire. Unfortunately people are out to get said millionaire, and the gang get caught up in the plot, being kidnapped and taken to a private island, a sceme masterminded by Tintin's apparent old nemesis, Rastapopoulos. Wow. What a name.
I read this book pretty much in one sitting. Not that it's particularly long, but I certainly got engrossed in it. From the kidnapping to the daring escape, to the hidden tunnels on the island, it's a nice little tale to get sucked into. But then it got to the end and things got a bit weird. One of the evil henchmen lost his teeth, making his speech difficult to read, while at the same time Tintin and co. stumble upon a weird dude who is contacting them via telepathic alien technology, and whose speech is also difficult to read because he ends every other word with "ink". Then they all get beamed aboard an alien spaceship. That's just weird, and it's hardly explained, it's like Hergé ran out of ideas to get the team out of their predicament, but then just said "Aliens!".
Still, while the plot does get quite ludicrous in the final pages, it's still a good read. Beautifully drawn, of course, and I feel that if I had the previous knowledge of the earlier books under my belt I could have been even more engrossed in it. This has done the job of giving me the desire to hunt out the rest.
My rating: 4/5
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