ci chong's Reviews > The Prisoner of Zenda

The Prisoner of Zenda by Anthony Hope
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Aug 11, 09


One of the best adventure stories I've ever come across.A thrilling tale of daring,double-identities,drugged Kings and devious Dukes; of sword fighting,villians, and heroes great and small-- in short, everything a swashbuckling tale of love and loyalty should have. Hope's mastery is amazing; from the first start of the action it flows like a rushing river,seamless, timeless, effortless, breathless.The characters are as vivid as the red hair of the Hapsburgs;the King, a weak,indecisive character one yet can only pity;Princess Flavia, who is at once not, and part of, the plot, with her sweet,innoucent nature;old, grim practical Sapt and young,ardent Fritz,bound in deathless loyalty to the King, no matter his faults;the tragic Antoinette de Mauban, torn between her ill-fated love for the Duke and his obvious wickedness;Duke Michael himself, cunning and unscrupulous and yet made almost likable in comparism to his debonnair henchman, the memorable Rupert Hentzau. And of course, Rudolf himself, a simple, almost languid gentlemen whose drastically different side is brought to the surface by the Duke's abduction of the King the night before the coronation-- and the daring plot Sapt and Fritz rope him into,playing on his uncanny resemblance to the King....
Full of tingling suspense, emotion, and excitement,the real climax comes when Rudolf has to decide whether the King of Ruritania-- and the husband of Princess Flavia-- will be himself in the end, or the helpless, useless Prisoner of Zenda, when circumstances strip them of everything other than what they really are at heart.
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