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The Mark of Zorro

3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  2,806 ratings  ·  176 reviews
The Mark of Zorro, masterfully adapted into a full-cast audio drama by the award-winning Hollywood Theater of the Ear especially for Blackstone Audio, is an exciting, action packed, swashbuckling adventure that will have listeners on the edge of their seats. In Colonial Spanish California, young aristocrat Don Diego de la Vega--son of the richest ranchero in the country--p ...more
Audio CD, 3 pages
Published April 1st 2011 by Blackstone Audiobooks (first published September 13th 1919)
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Johnston McCulley’s The Curse of Capistrano, serialised in the pulp magazine All Story Weekly in 1919, marked the first appearance in print of Zorro. The character was destined to become one of the iconic adventure heroes of course, but while the novel was quite successful what really got the ball rolling was the 1920 movie adaptation.

The movie changed the title to The Mark of Zorro and was a huge hit, propelling Douglas Fairbanks to superstardom. It was so successful that the original novel was
Ah Zorro. As a kid, I remember really enjoying Disney's Zorro series with Guy Williams. More recently I've had a lot of fun with the new Antonio Banderas movies. However, I'd never read any of the original adventures so I decided it was high time I change that. Being very familiar with the character as presented in TV and film, I found a few things surprising as I read his first adventure The Mark of Zorro.

Firstly, I was a little bummed that I already knew about the character because the author
I LOVE this story! Take The Scarlet Pimpernel and add healthy heaping of Spanish flavor and voila! The Mark of Zorro. I can see myself listening to this again in a few years. Even though it was predictable, it was fun and entertaining.

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I finally read one of the early Zorro books. Generally, those old adventure classics are pretty great (The Prisoner of Zenda is fantastic, as is Captain Blood). Anyway, The Mark of Zorro was great! While it was one of those books where the hero never even gets wounded, still it was a fun romp. I definitely recommend it to classic adventure fans.
Morris Graham
Since I had read the recent version of the Zorro tale by Chilean author Isabel Allende published in 2006, and watched all of the movies on TV and even the recent Antonio Banderas versions, I decided to go back to the past and read the original. I can't deny it. I love the Zorro tale, a swashbuckling, courageous defender of the weak and helpless. So now to review the original published in 1919.

The original story had multiple punctuation errors, namely placing a period in front of words that did n
Ally (The Scribbling Sprite)
Meal mush and goat's milk! That's it, I'm off to watch the movie.

I'd write a full review, but I am entirely too lazy for that, so I'll just say this is a favorite and leave you with a gif, because gifs are cool.

FYI: It is so much to read this book aloud. And I'm not in the habit of doing that.
The Curse of Capistrano is actually one of my favourite books of all time. I know it's not even close to a masterpiece, but I love the characters, the pace of the story, the plot (simple as it was).

I only gave it 3 stars because I realize it has many faults - the principal one being that the style is often not very fluid during the fight scenes. There's always a lot of chaos, and the reader can never be sure of what exactly is going on. One gets lost in the cloud of generic thrusts, touches, jum
I have been a fan of Zorro since I was... 8? Maybe even younger... Anyway, in my teen days (16? 17?) I found The Curse of Capistrano in district library. It looked a bit suspicious to my eyes - thin and with illustrations inside - but I carried it home anyway and merrily gobbled down in two or three hours.
I was sorely disappointed. The plot was thin, full of unbelievable and unrealistic twists; the characters were either black or white. Basically, everything in it screamed either 'young adult',
I first encountered Zorro as a character in an old movie my parents liked. Since then, I've sought out the stories when I could. When I discovered a number of them as radio plays through Audible, I had to pick them up.

This is the book that introduced the character of Zorro in 1919, originally titled, "The Curse of Capistrano." Johnston McCulley changed some aspects of the character since this first publication, but the sense of adventure and heroism is all there. As is the character's thirst for
Picked up at Newton library. I know. What was I thinking? Zorro? Hee hee.

Fun though. This is the ORIGINAL Zorro written in 1919-yep the one that started it all.

I almost bagged it in the beginning, because the writing leaves something to be desired. Lots of braggadocio and one already knows the story and all that.

However, Don Diego grew on me and the story actually wasn't exactly what we've always seen and it turned out to be a fun read.

More of a Spanish "Scarlet Pimpernel" than I remembered.
I am frustrated because I do not know enough (yet) to decide whether this is a great or terrible book. The author is either a genius or an imbecile and the story is either a cultural prototype or painfully derivative. I just don't know.

Is the stilted language an insightful imitation of a badly translated story or merely bad?

Is the plot stunningly original or numbingly repetitive?

Are the characters the brilliant progenitors of stereotypes or only shadowy successors?

Bob Kane admits the Zorro inf
Thom Swennes
Johnston McCulley created a super-hero that inspired a generation. In his novel The Curse of Capistrano McCulley introduced the world to Zorro. I remember watching Guy Williams portraying the masked swordsman as he fought injustice in Spanish California. I must admit that the film character outshined the original in this book but I could still see the inspirational base. In The Curse of Capistrano, Don Diego de la Vega is portrayed as a lazy eunuch uninterested in exerting any physical action an ...more
My thoughts: This was a good old fashioned, swashbuckling story. I love Zorro stories (though I've never read one, so I'm basing it on the movie), but this one was just perfect, complete with do-gooder outlaw, beautiful lady, and corrupt leaders. While the story is a bit simplistic, black and white, and just plain obvious, I think it is meant to be that way. And it still is charming. I really liked the full cast narration (Val Kilmer was not hard to listen to). The accents and the voices and the ...more
Leah Good
Robin Hood meets The Scarlet Pimpernel in this tale of Spanish dominated California. While the government has grown more and more oppressive a hero has been training himself to right wrongs. Now Zorro rides the countryside, stealing from soldiers what they have stolen from the people and punishing those who have dealt unjust punishment. It is this man who captures Lolita Pulido. At the same time the rich but languid Don Diego Vega has also asked for her hand. Can Zorro bring justice to the south ...more
IL have read this book this quarter and i feel very different when i read this. I dont know why, but i just feel like doing something nice for someone and not let anyone know who i am or why i did it. It makes me think of cops and charities. I think of cops because they help innocent people just like zorro. I think of charities because he does it for free and he helps the people who cant help themselfs. I love zorro because he is very kind and he doesnt even care about getting all the fam. Part ...more
Phil Clymer
An exciting mix of Superman with Audie Murphy. Good prevails over evil. All is right with the world.
Jul 12, 2011 Kat rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Fans of caped crusaders
Shelves: 2011
An excellent page-turner of an adventure story, though the audio version alters a few things from the original version of The Curse of Capistrano. The most notable alteration, and the only reason I gave this particular version 4 stars instead of 5, is that it entirely skips the dénouement, a.k.a. the last couple pages of the written version. Audio listeners thus miss out on Zorro's reveal, which entirely changes the end of the story. It's a shame, really, because this is otherwise a gloriously f ...more
Nola Redd
The story of the first serialized action hero started off in pulp magazines, and the flavor definitely remains. This is not to say the story lacks skill; it would not be the success it is without it. But in many ways it remains the precursor to the comic book hero - the characters are rather flat and generally stereotypical, the deception is relatively easy to guess (though of course I have my childhood knowledge of the identity behind the mask), and the thing that keeps you reading is the page ...more
Wayland Smith
I'm a big fan of heroes. I have been my whole life. Zorro is one of the earliest masked heroes, and you can draw a lot of parallels to Batman, who he came before by decades (rich playboy secret ID, loyal servant knows his secret, operates out of a cave beneath his home with secret passage access, animal code name, mask and flowing cape, you get the idea). Zorro is a dashing fun hero.

The story is a bit dated now, having been written in the early 20th century, but it's still a lot of fun. A masked
The Kindle edition was not so great. It wasn't the worst Kindle story I've read, but there were enough issues to throw me off once in a while. (numbers in place of letters, "die" instead of "the", etc.)

A goodreads friend rated this as fun and entertaining and I needed that after finishing a true crime book. So I picked it up and was not disappointed.
I listened to this as 9 podcast installments by B.J. Harrison who produces and narrates The Classic Tales Podcast. These are old novels presented to interest the public in classic literature. I listen to them because they are "good for me," to expose me to works I have missed along the way. Usually I find the older style of writing a bit tedious and less than engaging. However, I was pleasantly surprised by The Mark of Zorro.

Generally I listen to episodes of these old tales in between more conte
Fun read. It dawned on me toward the end of the book that I wasn't supposed to know his secret identity until the end and that may have changed part of how I read the book, but this story has been around so long that there is no way of not knowing. Still worth it if you are looking for a summer read.
Jul 05, 2008 Amanda rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: romantics and action fans
Recommended to Amanda by: Myself
Really good so far!

Okay, I finished it, and -- SPOILER! -- I really liked his double identity as Don Diego Vega, a caberello, and Senor Zorro, a highwayman and thief. Really different from the movie, though.
Kamas Kirian
An excellent adventure tale. I didn't realize how similar some of the themes were to the Robin Hood and The Scarlet Pimpernel stories. I thoroughly enjoyed the story. Most of my exposure to Zorro was through TV and Movies before this. I was a little surprised how little a role Bernard actually had. I was also surprised that Don Alejandro was putting pressure on Don Diego since he was considered a successful man in his own right. Sgt. Gonzales was a bit of an enigma to me - should I be rooting fo ...more
Fast-paced story of, Zorro-defender of justice(yay), Lolita-California beauty(aww), and Captain Ramon-the bad guy (boo). The original Zorro!
This book is... wow, amazing! I absolutely LOVED it! I recommend to everyone ages 9/10 and up. Such a wonderful book! :)
Phil Jensen
HECK YEAH!!! Behold the adventures of Zorro- avenger of the oppressed, master of swordsmen, and king of romance. In this masterpiece, Johnston McCulley serves up a relentless swashbuckling cheese parade, and I love every page of it.

Some people suggest that this book is identical to The Scarlet Pimpernel. Bah! Are grape juice and red wine one and the same? This book is full of manliness, and that book is full of crumpets. I can even imagine women enjoying this novel, if they can withstand the sm
Dan Schwent
This isn't a bad book. There just aren't any surprises if you know Zorro's true identity before you go in.
Bill Meeks
It was great to revisit this one. I haven't read it since I was a teenager and it definetly held up. The first dozen or so chapters are a little repetitive: Diego chats, runs off, Zorro appears, repeat. Once the Señorita Lolitia and Zorro begin their affair the plot speeds along. By the time he's assembled his Avengera I couldn't put it down. I spent an extra hour on the eliptical to finish!

A true classic that inspired and informed modern superheroes. Spanish style, a dramatic flair, and a heart
Yukina Sawada
12/17-1/7 60 minutes
The Mark if Zerro
Macmillan readers

7 words summary
1 Knight 2 Fight 3 Protect 4 The weak 5 Carve 6 Mark 7 Z

Have you ever support someone who were in a trouble?

I have help a old lady who couldn't carry a heavy luggage at the station.

85 minutes
7 word summary
1 Spain 2 Land 3 Won 4 Love 5 Last 6 Disclosed 7 Character

Do you have someone you know but you don't know about whom or who hides his or her character ?

I know a lady who lives near my house. But almost all o
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Why is it so difficult to find original Zorro stories aside from this? 3 12 Jul 30, 2013 09:30AM  
  • The Sea-Hawk
  • Prince of Foxes
  • The Four Feathers
  • Williwaw
  • Death of a Hero
  • The Military Philosophers (A Dance to the Music of Time, #9)
  • Confederates
  • El Dorado: Further Adventures of the Scarlet Pimpernel
  • Covenant with Death
  • The White Company
  • The Ship
  • South Wind
  • The Red Keep: A Story of Burgundy in 1165
  • A Knight of the White Cross
  • Fair Stood the Wind for France
  • Beau Geste
  • Rebel's Keep (Crown and Covenant, #3)
The Western Megapack: 25 Classic Western Stories The Black Star The Cowboy Megapack: 25 Western Tales by Masters Johnston McCulley's Zorro: The Masters Edition The Bat Strikes Again and Again!

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“Zorro also is part of the bandido tradition, most closely associated with the possibly mythical Joaquin Murrieta and the historical Tiburcio Vasquez. As well as these local California legendary figures, Zorro is an American version of Robin Hood and similar heroes whose stories blend fiction and history, thus moving Zorro into the timeless realm of legend. The original story takes place in the Romantic era, but, more important, Zorro as Diego adds an element of poetry and sensuality, and as Zorro the element of sexuality, to the traditional Western hero. Not all Western heroes are, as D. H. Lawrence said of Cooper's Deerslayer, "hard, isolate, stoic, and a killer," but in the Western genre the hero and villain more often than not share these characteristics. What distinguishes Zorro is a gallantry, a code of ethics, a romantic sensibility, and most significant, a command of language and a keen intelligence and wit.” 1 likes
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