Sunday, February 19, 2017

The Thirty Nine Steps by John Buchan

Rating: 2.5/5
Read between January 26th ,2017 to January 31th,2017

Edition Details:
Format : Kindle E-book
Page Count: 136
Series: Richard Hannay #1



First Sentence:
I returned from the City about three o'clock on that May afternoon pretty well disgusted with life.

Richard Hannay was living in London from a couple of days.He had come back from South Africa and had money with them.  He had thought he would be enjoying his life here but the reality had turned out to be different. He was getting bored of the life that he was leading and was seriously thinking about leaving the place if nothing interesting happened.

And then one day Franklin P. Scudder comes in his life . Scudder wants him to give him refuge for a few days. He tells him he has some information which could get him killed. And soon Richard finds himself in the midst of a conspiracy so big that could change the political situation of already unstable Europe. There is an organisation which wanted Russia and Germany to be against each other and they have a full fledged plan for doing so. Richard agrees to let him stay with him.

When Scudder is murdered, Police thinks Richard is the one who murdered him.

Also the guys, who have murdered the man, now want Richard dead. They think they Richard knows too much and can hamper their plan.

The only way for Richard to survive is to be on a run.

What was the organisation's plan? Would Richard be able to foil the organisation's nefarious plan? Would the police be able to capture Richard? Would he be able to prove his innocence?




I had liked the premise of the book and it had been on my tbr(to be read) list for a long time so i decided to give it a go.

I liked the story as a whole. The mystery was there, the tension was there and i liked Richard Hannay as a character.

The only thing i didn't like was the over drawn chase sequences(where Richard is running away from the authorities and the other people). These sequences were overly described and made the book a little bit less interesting for me. When i read my thrillers i want the story to be fast paced and the action to move quickly which doesn't happens when the hero keeps describing the events in minute details. I think if the details would have been less then the story would have been more taut.


It's a good story which could have been presented in a better way.You can read it one time. There are four more books featuring Richard Hannay and i would definitely check them out. I just hope he is less descriptive there.

Some lines from the book:
I gave half-crown to a beggar because i saw him yawn; he was a fellow sufferer.

'Pardon,' he said,'I'm a bit rattled tonight. You see, I happen at this moment to be dead.'
I sat down in an armchair and lit my pipe.
'What does it feel like?' I asked.

I read him as a sharp, restless fellow, who always wanted to get down to the roots of things. He got a little further down than he wanted.

Capital, he said, has no conscience and no fatherland.

If you are going to be killed  you invent some kind of flag and country to fight for, and if you survive you get to love the thing.

I was an ordinary sort of fellow, not braver than other people, but i hate to see a good man downed, and that long knife would not be the end of Scudder if i could the game in his place.

'You believe me,' I said gratefully.
'Of course I do,' and he held out his hand.
'I believe everything out of the common. The only thing to distrust is the normal.'

If you are hemmed in on all sides in a patch of land there is only one chance of escape. You must stay in the patch, and let your enemies search it and not find you.

The secret of playing a part was to think yourself into it. You could never keep it up, he said, unless you could manage to convince yourself that  you were it.

We went to his study for coffee, a jolly room full of books and trophies and untidiness and comfort. I made  up my mind that if ever i got rid of this business and had a house of my own, I would create just such a room.

I think he was the bravest man in the world, for he was always shivering with fright and yet nothing would choke him off.

The trouble with him was that he was too romantic. He had the artistic temperament and wanted a story to be better than God meant it to be.

I don't know if i can explain myself, but i used to use my brains as far as they went, and after they came to a blank wall i guessed adn i usually found my guesses pretty right.

A fool tries to look different: a clever man looks the same and is different.

If you have read the book then do tell me how did you like it? The book is in public domain so it's freely available. You can get the book from the following link:

Amazon

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