The 39 Steps Hardcover – Sep 1 2011
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This latest edition of the novel has been redesigned, resulting in an authentic looking cloth-bound book... Exciting and thrilling, this should be read by all The Sun A spiffing, well-loved Boy's Own sort of read The Daily Mail A handsome new edition Tribune
About the Author
John Buchan (1875-1940) was a Scottish diplomat, barrister, journalist, historian, poet, and novelist who is best known for his thriller The Thirty-Nine Steps and Greenmantle.
Steven Crossley has recorded over two hundred audiobooks and has won multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards. A graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, his audiobook performances cover an eclectic range of subjects in both fiction and nonfiction. --This text refers to the MP3 CD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
A few days later, when Hannay finds Scudder murdered with a knife in his heart, he realizes the truth behind Scudder's story and takes to his heels. Scotland Yard will be after him as the only plausible suspect in Hannay's murder and Hannay also realizes that the anarchists will be after him next because they won't know what Scudder might have told him. With Scudder's pocket book in hand, the only thing that contains the clues to his research into the plot, Hannay takes a train north planning to take refuge in the wilds of the Scottish Highlands. His only plan is to come out of hiding at the last minute before Karolides' visit in order to reveal the plot to the British government.
There is no doubt that "The Thirty-Nine Steps" is a staunchly British, well written, exciting and immensely entertaining adventure story that tells the tale of a man on the run in fear of his life. Richard Hannay is also depicted as a courageous patriot who selflessly puts his country's and his government's national interests and security ahead of his own.Read more ›
I wish I had read this novel sooner. I believe it is a must read for anyone interested in good literature and storytelling. I felt like the main character, Richard Hannay, was telling me the story as he puffed on his tobacco pipe. Hannay is like a man trapped in a giant rolling snowball...cept' he's enjoying the wild ride and ignoring the eventual crash.
Buchan made the suspense, the landscape, and the travel blend together in a very well-rounded adventure. I have never seen the movie adaptation, but will definitely look for it.
Interestingly written about the genesis of WWI in 1915, the author later went on to become Governor General of Canada (1930). Just adds a little more intrigue to a great little book.
This is a simple, straight forward, face value story where the good guy is not only good but honest, noble and innocent and the bad guys are not only bad but scheming, persistent and mysterious. Far from being a weakness, this is perhaps the central charm of this tale. This story is thrill-a-minute, good clean fun, with coded messages, agents in disguise, foot chases through London streets, and hide and seek on the sprawling Scottish moors. It is light but good quality entertainment sprinkled with some genuinely charming mood and description (good cinematography, to mix mediums). Is it a classic? In its way, yes. This would have fired the imaginations of every boy from 10 to 25 (and up) when it was published. If you are still boyish at heart and would like a good escapist read that feels like a spy film from the 30s - 60s (reminiscent of The Man Who Knew Too Much), this is it. And its short enough to read in one or two longish sittings.
The book is an example of an author being not so concerned where the story ends, but in having a lot of fun actually getting there.
Hitchcock's film, liberally quoted in other reviews, is a marvel, and should be required viewing by pretty much everyone. But it's about 50% different than the novel, keeping about half of the stuff found between these pages.
That makes reading the novel after seeing the film an unexpectedly surprising experience. The plot justs gallops along, one adventure and colorful character after another. Buchan's evocative and picturesque Scottish highlands breathe. His cocky hero, Richard Hannay, is a joy to follow. I had no idea there are FOUR subsequent novels featuring Hannay, which I now proudly own, in spectacular Folio editions!
One last thing: the "anti-Semitism" mentioned comes only from the decidedly evil character (and is totally within character), and not seen anywhere else in the novel.
This is not a classic in the "heavy, literal, dense, highbrow" sense. This is a classic that you can imagine thousands of people, early in this century, having just the best time reading.
Most recent customer reviews
A good. Mystery. Unreal passages. No-name people. Politics of Europe interesting. Lonely protagonistPublished 9 months ago by valdarie
I remember reading it many years ago. When I recently saw the movie I decided I had to read it again.Published 16 months ago by George Vanderwerf
An excellent introduction to the Buchan style of descriptive narrative that takes you though the Scottish wilds. Read morePublished on Sept. 13 2006 by Kelley Charlebois
John Buchan claims to have written this fast-paced "dime novel" while recovering from an illness. The story of how Richard Hannay stumbles upon and then escapes from a pre-WWI... Read morePublished on Sept. 3 2003 by bensmomma
This 1915 espionage thriller will delight fans of Conon Doyle with a chain of "adventures" involving a chase, disguises, roll playing, an impossible escape, secret code, warplans,... Read morePublished on Dec 9 2002 by Scroop Moth