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Prester John

by John Buchan

Action / Adventure / Spy / Espionage eBooks of the Month Historical Fiction

LoveReading View on Prester John

Prester John is Buchan's first adventure story and is comparable in style and pace to Rider Haggard and Robert Louis Stevenson.  Set in South Africa in 1900 it has a simple but compelling story which will keep you hooked to the pages from start to finish.  From the eastern shores of Scotland to Southern Africa the reader is taken into an exciting but entirely credible world of adventure involving fabulous treasure, violence, double-dealing, a native uprising and the protagonist's eventual triumph over the forces of evil.


From the Introduction by Trevor Royle in Prester John:

Prester John is a wonderfully solid achievement. Not only did it give Buchan the confidence that he was a natural teller of tales but its fast-moving action looks forward to later adventure novels such as The Thirty-Nine Steps (1915), Greenmantle (1916) and Huntingtower (1922). It was the prentice piece on which all his future fiction was constructed.

Prester John Synopsis

South Africa, 1900. After his father dies, nineteen-year-old David Crawfurd is sent off to South Africa to earn his living as a storekeeper in the back of beyond. A strange encounter on the journey suggests that dark deeds and treacherous intrigues are afoot - all bound up with the mysterious primeval kingdom of Prester John. Written as a boys' adventure story and set mostly in South Africa (where Buchan had worked), Prester John was published in 1910 when Buchan was 35. It's a fast-moving thriller in the style of Robert Louis Stevenson and Rider Haggard.

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781846970641
Publication date: 13/08/2009
Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited an imprint of Birlinn General
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781846970641
Publication date: 13th August 2009
Author: John Buchan
Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited an imprint of Birlinn General
Format: Paperback
Genres: Action Adventure / Spy, eBook Favourites, Historical Fiction,

About John Buchan

John Buchan led a truly extraordinary life: he was a diplomat, soldier, barrister, journalist, historian, politician, publisher, poet and novelist. He was born in Perth in 1875, the eldest son of a Free Church of Scotland minister, and educated at Hutcheson’s Grammar School in Glasgow. He graduated from Glasgow University then took a scholarship to Brasenose College, Oxford. During his time there – ‘spent peacefully in an enclave like a monastery’ – he wrote two historical novels. In 1901 he became a barrister of the Middle Temple and a private secretary to the High Commissioner for South Africa. ...

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