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The Power House (Sir Edward Leithen #1)

3.46  ·  Rating Details  ·  228 Ratings  ·  32 Reviews
When his friend Charles Pitt-Heron vanishes mysteriously, Sir Edward Leithen is at first only mildly concerned. But a series of strange events that follow Pitt-Heron’s disappearance convinces Leithen that he is dealing with a sinister secret society. Their codename is ‘The Power-House’. The authorities are unable to act without evidence. As he gets deeper involved with the ...more
Paperback, 112 pages
Published June 30th 2001 by House of Stratus (first published 1916)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 472)
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Marts  (Thinker)
A good yet rather short suspense and adventure tale from Buchan...
Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
Apr 16, 2013 Jayaprakash Satyamurthy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jayaprakash by:
Shelves: espionage
Edward Leithen is a very different character from Richard Hannay: he's well settled in his urban life as a lawyer and MP, doesn't crave travel and isn't an adventurer. However, like Hannay, he has a knack for finding himself in the midst of perilous conspiracies, and he rises to the occasion in his own way.

The villain of the piece is a type Buchan returned to every now and then: the highly intelligent, civilised man who seeks to bring down the world order. The gradual accretion of clues in the
Feb 09, 2016 Toastkat rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
There's something to be said about vintage literature: it makes for fascinating study. Someone knowledgeable in history, social studies, or politics would find vintage literature an easy window to view our past from and compare the worlds of yesterday to the universe of now. As for readers like me, who have little or fragmented knowledge of the aforementioned topics, there is still the benefit of the effortless time machine that is the printed word. Lately I've developed a fascination with antiq ...more
بسام عبد العزيز
قصة بوليسية أخرى من بوكان.. بطلها عضو برلمان يكتشف وجود منظمة سرية يتزعمها شخص ما و من خلالها يسيطر هذا الشخص على انجلترا بأكملها.. و يحاول البطل كشف تلك المنظمة..

الأحداث سريعة لم أشعر بالملل منها.. و لو ان فكرة "عضو البرلمان" الذي يقوم بدور "جيمس بوند" تبدو فكرة غريبة قليلا بالنسبة لي.. لكن على أي حال تقبلتها و استمتعت بمحاولات البطل لكشف المنظمة الإجرامية..

لكن أهم ما لاحظته في الرواية هو تركيز جون بوكان على فكرة "الحضارة الهشة" .. ففي النقاش بين البطل و بين زعبم المنظمة الإجرامية يحاول الزعيم
Ahmed Younis
Sep 15, 2014 Ahmed Younis rated it liked it
Simple mystery with action mixed in one novel makes you feel like a child wrote the novel plus numerous places can make you get confused

His experience in the First World War was so useful in this novel and the 39 steps

He should be named Sir Arthur Conan Doyle the second for this :D
Susan Jo Grassi
Sep 30, 2015 Susan Jo Grassi rated it really liked it
This short terrorist thriller was written in 1916 by John Buchan of The Thirty-Nine Steps fame and is, in my opinion, worth a read. The action is a little dated compared to today's standards but it is still a great novella, with fascinating, strong characters pitting good against evil.
Mohab Hariry
Mar 20, 2014 Mohab Hariry rated it it was ok
Shelves: asly
Well my first reaction after reading this book is it was OK not great not bad .. it reminded me a lot of our Egyptian writer Dr.nabil farook because it was a light story yet amusing but has no specific depth in it
Lack of logic played a big part into giving me this opinion, the easiness with which such a strong criminal has fallen is unbelievable
the writer neglected completely to give details about the enemy and his organization unlike the hero that he gave details about which made the enemy a fi
May 27, 2016 Julia rated it liked it
Sir Edward Leithen is your average British barrister, leading a comfortable, if predictable, life... until he begins noticing some strange coincidences. They were seemingly unrelated, but gradually point to some dirty doings surrounding a friend who took off unexpectedly for parts unknown. His suspicions begin to center on a wealthy, well-known, and intelligent businessman, who reveals himself to Leithen as an ardent anarchist. The barrister finds himself the target of many "watchers", and then, ...more
- هي رواية بوليسية خفيفة نوعاً ما تستطيع أن تقرأها بين كتابين ثقيلين عميقين لتستجم بها ربما فالأحداث ليست معقدة جدا كروايات أجاثا كريستي مثلاُ
- شخصية تشابمان هي أكثر الشخصيات التي أحببتها في الرواية رغم إندفاعه ولكنه شخص طيب القلب حقاً وكذلك زوجة بت - هيرون " إيثيل " رغم إختفاءها تقريباً من الأحداث لكنها كانت سامدة وشهرت بقوتها في مواجهة موقف إختفاء زوجها .
- ملحوظة صغيرة فقط : لا أعلم ما علاقة غلاف الرواية في تلك النسخة بمضمون الرواية أخفق قليلاً الفنان محمود الهندي في تصميم الغلاف تلك المرة ور
May 01, 2012 dragonhelmuk rated it really liked it
Can be kindled very cheaply, since public domain in some countries: The beginning of the “Leithin” series by John Buchan, this book is pretty good, although not as fun as John Macnab which follows it. It tells of an “extra-social intellect” – someone who is amazingly clever, but is not prepared to use their intellect for the good of their country. This of course leads to urbane, violence hating middle aged men outwitting each other and playing games of honour, which is just what Buchan does best ...more
Nov 21, 2014 Stephen rated it liked it
I think it's the one of J.B.'s novels that I like the least. Some tried and true ingredients but no snap. An early potboiler, but does stay on some of the author's favorite themes, like the suave heartless monster who plans to corrupt civilization as we know it. Read it by all means if you aim (as did I) to read every one. Don't make it your introduction.
Rog Harrison
Apr 05, 2014 Rog Harrison rated it liked it
This was originally published in 1913 and is pretty short - 86 pages in the edition I read. Edward Leithen is a barrister and a Member of Parliament who manages to thwart an evil mastermind who wants to bring chaos in the world. I am not sure that the story actually makes sense but Leithen is an engaging character and an unlikely hero so I quite enjoyed this.
Julian King
Jul 10, 2013 Julian King rated it it was amazing
Our hero, Edward Leithen, seems indistinguishable from Dick Hannay - but who cares? Here we enjoy the next step on the way from Bulldog Drummond to James Bond, via Sherlock Holmes and Dornford Yates. The heart sank momentarily - but only momentarily - when the heart of the adventure was revealed to concern an international criminal organisation (forces beyond our control etc), but then one tunes in to Hunted only to be confronted with 'Hourglass', and after all, were not Smersch and SPECTRE cut ...more
Mar 26, 2009 Susan rated it liked it
The Power-House--and "The Frying Pan and the Fire," a story included in the 1958 edition I picked up at the great Renaissance Bookstore in the Milwaukee airport, copyrighted by "Susan, Lady Tweedsmuir"--are quite a letdown compared to Buchan's WWI novels. The vague threat of some anarchist, Nietzschean megalomaniac remains just that--vague. I could roll with it if there were even a slight and distant sound of approaching international conflict, but it ends with greater irrelevance than it starts ...more
Aug 29, 2015 Shelley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quick intellectual thriller.

Engaging and fun, in a very short span of pages. The cynicism helps quite a bit, too. Kind of a period X-Files.
Mar 22, 2014 Henry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A simple yet intelligent tale of a man almost falling into a world of espionage and going beyond the call of duty over friendship, pride and pure and simply for the thrill of it.

This is the second Buchan I've read after "The 39 Steps" and I definitely want more from Hannay's adventures and now Leithen has joined him. It has the classic Buchan implausibility, but at the same time stimulation your enthusiasm and keeping you on the end of your seat, even though as Leithen describes at the beginnin
Apr 22, 2014 Jared8randall rated it it was amazing
Buchan's writing style is witty and fun to read. People get in a tizzy because of all the mad coincidences in his "dime novels," well they're not seeing the point: it's a fun, short read. Leithen is my favorite Buchan character so far. The restaurant scene is gold.
Apr 11, 2013 Busyknitter rated it liked it
Shelves: 52in13
A quick and easy read this one, written just before the First World War, when the popular imagination was seized with fascination and fear of Anarchists (with a capital A), whose sinister networks infiltrated and tried to control Civilised Society (capital C and S). John Buchan always spins a good yarn and I would recommend this as an excellent introduction to his style, so long as you are able to leave some of your 2013 sensibilities at the door.
Feb 11, 2010 Mandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoy reading John Buchan's books. His style is really of it's time - published in 1913 - but the story moves quickly.
The idea of having a sedentary politician as the main character is rather interesting, especially since other characters take over the more usual role of the adventurous hero. The central villain is quite interesting too. My copy had a rather good foreword by Stella Rimmington (ex Director General of MI5).
Oct 28, 2013 Dana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Published in 1913, this early spy/adventure story kept me turning pages. As a contrast to the usual hero of this genre who travels with expertise all over the globe, this story contained a reluctant protagonist who never travels far from his London flat and office--but winds up holding a key to a puzzle that affects his more adventurous friends. I thoroughly enjoyed this story.
Electric Landlady
Your basic Buchan. Not as delightful as Huntingtower but just dandy in its way. Recommended if you like average, unadventurous heroes and those Agatha Christies with hordes of faceless minions at the beck and call of a massive international conspiracy.
Ayman  Agour
الترجمة جيدة جداً، إصدار مكتبة الأسرة

أدب المغامرات للناشئين

السير إدوارد ليثين يقع فى مغامرة، تشتعل أحداث الرواية حتى نصل إلى النهاية التى ينتصر فيها الخير على الشر كالعادة.

شخصيات الرواية :

السير إدوارد ليثين
مستر أندرو لوملى
تومى ديلورين
تشارلز بيت هيرون
إيثيل بيت هيرون
الخادم والترز
Malcolm Noble
Jan 01, 2014 Malcolm Noble rated it it was amazing
Here is a link to my review on You Tube
Aug 26, 2012 Adam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adventure
A direct descendent of Holmes v Moriarty, this Edwardian thriller (actually 1913 but Edwardian in spirit) is a good romp through establishment London with shades of The Man Who Was Thursday and The Secret Agent, keeping anarchy at bay.
Jan 09, 2013 Syafiqah rated it it was amazing
Absolutely loved it! Buchan wrote Leithen wonderfully, and I honestly feel that the use of a first-person in the novella made reading much more intimate and let the reader feel more involved. Can't wait to get my hands on the sequels!
Mervyn Lovatt
Sep 23, 2015 Mervyn Lovatt rated it liked it
Shelves: novels
Good atmosphere, good premise - but the powerhouse of the title was barely explored - a pity, instead we have a rather mundane thriller
Feb 08, 2011 Gerry rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A typical John Buchan story with plenty of good description but the storyline, vivid at the time of writing, is now a little dated.
John Weller
Apr 11, 2012 John Weller rated it it was ok
Found this book in a cottage in Norfolk.

A few too many coincidences happen in this book for my liking.

Mar 15, 2010 Trish rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-vintage
Not bad - some interesting ideas, although the major character isn't as interesting as Richard Hannay.
Amicus (David Barnett)
Nov 23, 2011 Amicus (David Barnett) rated it it was amazing
Usually published in tandem with the "Thirty-nine Steps". I rate this as slightly superior.
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John Buchan (1st Baron Tweedsmuir) was a British novelist and public servant who combined a successful career as an author of thrillers, historical novels, histories and biographies with a parallel career in public life. At the time of his death he was Governor-General of Canada.

Buchan was born in Scotland and educated at Glasgow and Oxford Universities. After a brief career in law he went to Sou
More about John Buchan...

Other Books in the Series

Sir Edward Leithen (5 books)
  • John Macnab (Sir Edward Leithen, #2)
  • The Dancing Floor (Sir Edward Leithen, #3)
  • The Gap in the Curtain (Sir Edward Leithen #4)
  • Sick Heart River (Sir Edward Leithen, #5)

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“I began to get really keen, for every man at the bottom of his heart believes that he is a born detective.” 10 likes
“To spend your days on such work when the world is chockful of amusing things. Life goes roaring by and you only hear the echo in your stuffy rooms.” 8 likes
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