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Kidnapped (Oxford Children's Classics) Hardcover – 3 Mar 2011


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford (3 Mar. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019276358X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192763587
  • Product Dimensions: 18.8 x 2 x 13.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (141 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 317,721 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

"It stands as one of Robert Louis Stevenson's most compelling works - it was one of the author's favourites, and his affection for his central characters is unmistakable - and is a novel you want to press on people, knowing they'll love it" (Ian Rankin Guardian)

"Generations of readers have been enthralled by his tale of the gauche young David, orphaned at 17, who is plunged into a life of danger and excitement... His rescue by the daredevil Jacobite Alan Breck Stewart, their bloody battle with the crew of the Covenant and shipwreck on rocks off the west coast isle of Earraid are among the most exciting scenes penned by a Scots author" (Daily Mail)

"Anyone who has read Kidnapped knows that Robert Louis Stevenson was a marvellously powerful storyteller as well as a great stylist" (Daily Telegraph)

"It's a pacy, twisting story that appeals to all ages and across classes and cultures. It's a tale of friendship in adversity, and a coming-of-age story" (Ian Rankin Guardian) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Book Description

A gripping tale of skulduggery and revenge

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Samhchair.Muir on 1 Mar. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A rip-roaring tale set in the aftermath of the 45 rebellion. Alan Breck, the mercenary who started fighting for King George, then changed his allegiance, David Balfour, the naive, recently bereaved loyalist, betrayed by his only living relative and sold to a rogue ships captain to be transported to a life of slavery in the West Indies. Fate throws toe pair together in a mutual defence of their lives. Separated in a ship wreck the pair are reunited in Appin where the Hanoverian Campbells falsely accuse David of murdering their agent.. Hunted by the King's troops the pair make their way to Edinburgh, Alan Breck on Prince Charles Edward Stuart's business, and David seeking justice from his treacherous uncle. Who wins out? is it the Wee Wee German Lairdie or the Young Pretender? Does Alan Breck escape to France and is David Balfour's inheritance restored to him? Well today's Monarch is neither a Stuart nor a Hanoverian.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sheila on 30 Jun. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This was a re-read for a Book Group suggestion. It was lovely to come across a story I remembered from childhood. And it was a proper story with nice short chapters headed with what the chapter was to be about. A good read told at a cracking pace. Perhaps some modern writers could try copying a formula which works? i.e. character is introduced, sets off on journey, meets lots of interesting people, had adventures, wins over adversity, end of story with promise of better things to come for him.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful By J. R. S. Morrison on 24 April 2001
Format: Paperback
The troubled Stevenson, creator of Jekyll and Hyde and 'Treasure Island', turned to his love of Scottish history for 'Kidnapped', the tale of Davie Balfour, a lowland Whig sold into slavery by a miscreant uncle and then, after a shipwreck, a companion of Jacobite highlander Alen Breck in a desperate escape through the mountains of Scotland with English troops in pursuit. An essentially simple tale told with wit and style, and a highly accessible classic.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By ossian on 11 Mar. 2008
Format: Paperback
As a writer, Stevenson knows his stuff. The charcterisation of David and Alan, the two main characters, is excellent and the plot is driven forward by being in the form of a journey for survival in the Scottish wilderness. The Highlands and Islands are depicted realistically in the book and it is historically accurate (Unlike that flim with Mel Gibson in it).
When I first picked up this book I was expecting a historical action-adveture story. In fact, this novel has character driven plot and the main source of conflict is the way that David's conservative, lowland views clash with the personality of Alan, a jacobite. However, this does not put you off reading the book as this is handled very well.
Off course, the book still has action in it, as David has to cope with such dangers as kidnapping, an evil uncle who tries to kill him and torrential Highland downpours.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 11 Mar. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Reading this I was struck by how much history is included. The book gives a very vivid picture of life in the Highlands after the defeat of the Scots at Culloden; its almost as if the story was a pretext for a history lesson. The action proceeds at quite a leisurely pace. After David is kidnapped, he spends quite a while on the boat, then on an island, and it is almost half way through the book before his travels through Scotland with Alan Breck begin. The style is good however and the narrative keeps its grip. The worst feature of the book is its ending which famously is very abrupt and inconclusive.
I read it as an adult, never having got round to it as a boy. I enjoyed it well enough, but I am not sure if I would have liked it so much as a boy because of the leisurely pace and the amount of historical detail. Treasure Island is more suited to younger readers.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Didier TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 29 Jan. 2010
Format: Paperback
It's been years since I first read this book (in Dutch at the time, I guess I must have been 13 or 14) but I still held fond memories about David Balfour's adventures in the Scottish highlands, so when I saw it published as one of Penguin's Popular Classics I bought it immediately, anxious to find out if it would prove as captivating after all these years and in English. I needn't have worried! From the very first sentence I was once again drawn into the story of David Balfour, his miserly uncle Ebenezer, and the highland 'gentleman' Alan Breck. Reading this late into the night, I felt 13 again, and as ready as then to sympathize with 'Davie' and always eager to find out what happened next (and having finished it plunged straight into 'Treasure Island' for good measure). It proved - as well it might - even better in English with the delightful Scottish words and phrases Stevenson uses in the dialogues.

One of the first but surely still one of the very best adventures stories, splendid entertainment whatever your age. I'll say nae maer!
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Silver Button on 5 Aug. 2006
Format: Hardcover
When I was younger, my family had a collection of illustrated Classic books with a cartoon on every page. Kidnapped was the only book I never read of the collection because of the horrible pictures. (By the way, that problem has been repeated in practically every edition I have seen.) Several years ago I blundered into the book and it has become, by far, one of my favorites.

The beauty of the book is the development of the two characters David Balfour and Alan Breck. I agree with Henry James that the beginning of the books drags, as we are introduced to young David and his unappealing uncle Ebenezer. Alan Breck splashes into the story and provides the contrast to David's personality. The excitement of the book comes when David and Alan are stuck together traveling through the wilderness alone with their own personal grievances against each other. The beautifully realized characters create the tension that propels this compelling story.

Of course, there is the history of the real events this story is based on, and readers may find they want to look further into that, as I have. It's David and Alan, though, that make the story worth anyone's while.
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