John le Carre reads one of the greatest of all adventure stories, Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson.
Abridged in 5 parts by Katrin Williams.
When a mysterious sailor dies in sinister circumstances at the Admiral Benbow inn, young Jim Hawkins stumbles across a treasure map among the dead man's possessions.
But Jim soon becomes only too aware that he is not the only one who knows of the map's existence, and his bravery and cunning are tested to the full when, with his friends Squire Trelawney and Dr Livesey, he sets sail in the Hispaniola to track down the treasure horde.
With its swift-moving plot and memorably drawn characters - Blind Pew and Black Dog, the castaway Ben Gunn and the charming but dangerous Long John Silver - Stevenson's tale of pirates, treachery and heroism was an immediate success when it was first published in 1883 and has retained its place as one of the greatest of all adventure stories.
John le Carre is well-known as a superb reader of his own work and has received high praise for his recent readings for BBC Radio - The Tailor of Panama in 1997, Single and Single in 1999, The Constant Gardener in 2001 and Absolute Friends in 2004.
In 2002 he read Robert Graves' Goodbye To All That for BBC Radio 4.
Treasure Island provides ample opportunity for le Carre to show off his talents as a performer, as he animates a cast of characters from pompous members of the landed gentry to vicious pirates.
The producer is David Blount.
This is a Pier production for BBC Radio 4.
Jim Hawkins and the pirates, led by Long John Silver, search for Flint's buried treasure.
Jim Hawkins and the pirates, led by Long John Silver, go in search of Flint's buried treasure.