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Summary

Sir Richard Hannay introduces this last adventure involving his old friends.

John Blenkiron discovers that a ruthless industrialist is plotting to destabilise America and cause global turmoil. Although Bavarian born, Castor plans to dominate the world from Olifa, a small country in Latin America.

Hannay realises he is now too old for the job of thwarting these evil designs and enlists the aid of his old friend Sandy Arbuthnot, now Lord Clanroyden. Fortunately, Sir Archibald Roylance and his wife, Janet, are honeymooning in Olifa and are able to lend a hand. Sandy decides that revolution is the way forward, and Buchan draws on his experience of the tactics of the Boers in South Africa to describe the action of the campaign. Also, the villain is captured, and Janet is instrumental in effecting his ideological change but at great cost.

The novel was published in 1929. It is unlikely to be a coincidence that in the same year, American financial markets collapsed, giving another Bavarian national, who had been abusing his people, the opportunity to consolidate his power in Germany and, ultimately, make his insane bid for world domination.

©2016 Assembled Stories (P)2016 Assembled Stories

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  • 04-10-18

Buchan's tactical stories are rather better.

A fun story, clearly influenced by the Great War.
A little clunkily narrated, but a good listen.

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Not vintage Buchan

Like so many Buchan novels, this draws upon a small band of intrepid heroes who orbit around Richard Hannay, who provides the foreword to this adventure. However, that is the limit of his involvement in a story which takes place in the interwar period in a fictional South American country, but has lots of characteristics of Argentina and Chile.

With Sandy Arbuthnot (of Greenmantle fame) and the American speculator Blenkiron in tow, the story promises much but is strangely lifeless. It centres on a rebellion inspired and led by Arbuthnot, but almost all the real action happens off-stage, a bit like many of the battles in Shakespeare and is reported by characters who run on breathlessly to tell their news. There are a few set-pieces which are quite gripping, but this is not one of Buchan's best, and it is small wonder that it has fallen into relative obscurity.

For Buchan aficionados only, I feel.

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  • Susy
  • 02-01-21

great yarn wonderful interpretation

one of my favorites from Buchan. Clanroyden (Sandy) I believe is one of the most interesting characters he created. seeing Archie who we get glimpses of in other stories is a great addition. Buchan wrote of strong women maybe at a time when it wasn't seen as much.
As for the reader I would call him an interpreter because he truly takes on a voyage. Bringing all characters to life including the setting. Most enjoyable.
if you like action it here. a bit of a thriller, character study and a bit of romance thrown in.

I just wish peter piernow (spelling?) would have gotten his own adventure. I did not miss Hannay. Sandy always brought great intrigue and mystery to the stories.
Enjoy.