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In my view, the greatest Scottish novel ever is Robert Louis Stevenson’s Kidnapped. Rich with Jacobite history, full of superb descriptions of landscape, this novel gives one of the best depictions of friendship I know. I’d rank Kidnapped in my list of ten favourite novels of all time. Come and discover its treasures with me.
Few writers have equalled Stevenson in a gift for storytelling, but his brilliant narrative abilities were matched by his acute psychological perception and his passion for history. I’d have so loved to meet Stevenson and have loved following him around the world, seeing his homes in Edinburgh, France and Samoa, walking in his footsteps with a donkey in the Cevennes and being lucky enough to dine in his childhood home in Scotland. He’s one of my most loved writers ever, and I feel so sad that he did not live for longer.
Once I thought of Kidnapped as an exciting adventure story for children, now I rank it as one of the greatest novels ever written for children and for adults. It is up there amazingly close to the novels of Jane Austen in my esteem – what higher compliment can I pay this novel?
I hope that you too will revisit Kidnapped and experience its power. Come with me to experience kidnap, treachery, the abuse of power, the growth of friendship, loyalty in many different forms, and some of the best narrative writing you will ever find.
Add more enjoyment to your copy of R.L. Stevenson & Kidnapped Literary Reader's Guide at its online companion page. Susannah has prepared these recommended resources to accompany R.L. Stevenson & Kidnapped.
Featured image credit- Peter O’Toole and Peter Finch in R.L. Stevenson’s Kidnapped (1960), https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0053994
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