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I have now finished re-reading the sequel, Rupert of Hentzau , and I adore it too, but not quite so much. It's a longer novel for a start and the pacing, although fast, isn't quite as breath-taking as the first book. Also the author, Anthony Hope, a very accomplished writer, chose a peculiar way of framing the narrative of this more complex novel.

A lot of the action is told from the point of view of a character not actually present during most of the described events, but who reconstructs them from what he afterwards learns. To add to the confusion, this character is sometimes present. The result is slightly strange and distancing, a mixture of reliable and possibly unreliable narrative, including a few scenes that are openly admitted to be pure speculation. But on the whole it is an excellent read; an authentic swashbuckler.

The villain, Rupert himself, is a magnificent character. Unlike so many novels of this type, it is the bad guy who is constantly on the back foot, outnumbered and having to rely on his considerable wits in order to survive his permanently precarious position. This aspect humanizes Rupert and makes him seem almost likeable; or if not likeable, than certainly admirable in some ways. The duel in which he must desperately fight for his life in a narrow attic is a superb set-piece. I have stressed that this was a re-reading of the book. I first read both novels when I was about 15 but although I remembered parts of the first book, I remembered absolutely nothing about the sequel.

It was as if I was reading it for the first time. A sequel that is not as good as the original: the plot is weaker and requires a lot of behind-the-scenes explanations and jumping around the timetable to keep the subplots together. The change in narrator also doesn't help, as Fritz is not present for a good part of the events in the book and it's not as interesting to read a second hand account of events compared to the 'memoirs' feeling of the first Zenda.

This change in narrator is also a very bad foreshadowing of the disappointing finale in A sequel that is not as good as the original: the plot is weaker and requires a lot of behind-the-scenes explanations and jumping around the timetable to keep the subplots together. This change in narrator is also a very bad foreshadowing of the disappointing finale in which view spoiler [, after 50 pages of debating whether it is right or not for Rudolf to be King and marry Flavia, the author avoids the question altogether by killing him off without revealing what he actually had decided; this, quite probably, because the 'right' decision would have offended the fin de siecle puritan sentiment by legitimizing Flavia's adulterous love hide spoiler ].

Just stop reading at the end of the first book and remember Ruritania as it was. Oct 05, Rick Davis rated it liked it Shelves: general-fiction. A major theme that runs through much of great literature is the conflict betweeen Duty and Love. In "The Aeneid", Virgil has Aeneas choose duty over love. This conclusion was the majority opinion throughout Western history up until the time of the Romantics, who elevated Love above Duty. In the "Prisoner of Zenda", Anthony Hope danced a bit around this question in A major theme that runs through much of great literature is the conflict betweeen Duty and Love.

In the "Prisoner of Zenda", Anthony Hope danced a bit around this question in the midst of his ripping adventure yarn, and, like a good subject of the British Empire, gave the Roman answer to the question: Duty Wins. In "Rupert of Hentzau" Hope revisits the question, ramps up the moral dilemma, increases tension to the breaking point and finally It's a shame really since the first book was so good.

Jul 28, Yoshinga rated it liked it. I did enjoy certain aspect of this sequal to "Prisoner of Zenda", the plots, the overall story-telling. I think part of the story was told better than the first book. However, I am not certain why the author chose the voice of Fritz as the narrator of the story.

Fritz was not present in many of the key scenes which make the narration awkward. And above all, I was disappointed at the ending. Ahh well. I still like Anthony Hope very much. Feb 16, Beattie rated it it was ok Shelves: radio-4x , winter , victorian , swashbuckler , underratings , classic , satire , adventure , published Queen Flavia writes a fateful letter to her true love Rudolf Rassendyll.

Sequel to The Prisoner of Zenda. Stars Julian Glover. Ruritanian Romance. This would make no sense at all if you haven't got The Prisoner of Zenda under your belt. View all 10 comments.

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Apr 06, Rimsha Salam rated it it was amazing Shelves: realistic-wrting , kingdoms , historical , made-me-scream , bestest-books-ever , sad-endings , swoon-worthy , amazing-villans , male-leads , frustrating-deaths. Truely a magnificent piece of work! A brilliant sequel, perfectly consistent with the first book. Once again the last paragraphs are beautiful. A stirring, noble story. Feb 08, LauraT rated it liked it.


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That a better man could be a better king was, in my humble opinion, unconceivable for an Englishman. Still Hope came the nearest to it as he could!!! However, as I progressed with it, I found myself caught up in the web and was spellbound as the tale unfolded. A swashbuckling story of high treason, intrigue, love and above all honour. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. However, when I reached college, I was advised by a trusted college friend, who had similarly loved The Prisoner of Zenda, that I should just leave Ruritania where it had been left at the end of that great novel.

So, wary, I left Rupert on the shelf for a decade. I read it, though, a couple of weeks ago. And I loved it, and I sort of thought that my friend was right, too. First, the book was very well written. Immediately, it grabs you. The plot, too, is just about as urgent and tortuous in a good way as the first novel. So, I thoroughly enjoyed reading through the novel, just about as much as I did The Prisoner of Zenda. But then there was the ending. I cannot mark the novel down too much for the ending, because, in truth, it seems like the only way that things could turn out.

Rupert of Hentzau is an excellent novel that fans of The Prisoner of Zenda will likely enjoy. You should just be warned about it, too, though.

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The tone shifts from The Prisoner of Zenda : gone is the optimistic energy and spirit of adventure, thanks to the lackluster narration of Fritz and to the story revolving around a defensive action on the part of the protagonists. And all of it not to avert war or save a life, but to pr The tone shifts from The Prisoner of Zenda : gone is the optimistic energy and spirit of adventure, thanks to the lackluster narration of Fritz and to the story revolving around a defensive action on the part of the protagonists.

And all of it not to avert war or save a life, but to protect the honor of a woman who, let's be honest, is neither dynamic nor interesting. The story really lights up when the stylishly villainous Rupert of Hentzau himself blusters onstage, and the one scene between him and Rudolf is magic. Apr 16, K. The novel that has the most vogue this month is Mr. Anthony Hope's "Rupert of Hentzau. It has all the lightness and sparkle of Mr.

Anthony Hope's style. In thrilling interest, the boldness of its situations, and the skill with which the complicated skein of an intricate conspiracy is unwound, "Rupert of Hentzau" does not fall below "The Prisoner of Zenda. Hope, like his hero Rudolf Rassendyll, has learnt how slow suspicion is, if the deception be bold enough. It is only likely frauds that are detected. If we are to accept this as the test of safety, Mr.

Rupert of Hentzau: Anthony Hope – The Idle Woman

Hope's characters can play their parts with the utmost assurance of remaining undetected. When we leave the Prisoner of Zenda the Kingdom of Ruritana is once more at peace. But it was a calm which precedes a fresh storm. A single spark was sufficient to set everything in conflagration. This spark is supplied by a letter written by Queen Flavia to Rudolf of Rassendyll. The letter falls into the hands of Rupert of Hentzau, who sees in it a means of defeating his enemies and regaining his position in Ruritana.

Rupert of Hentzau: From The Memoirs of Fritz Von Tarlenheim

Hope describes the working of the two conspiracies, one to place the letter in the hands of King Rudolf, and the other to prevent the letter reaching him. The letter is finally destroyed, but almost all the principal characters have perished in the struggle.


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Queen Flavia alone remains to lament the death of husband and lover, and to reign in Ruritana. Grim old Colonel Sapt is as resourceful and cool as ever. Only on one occasion does his ingenuity fail him. He is in the hunting lodge with the dead body of King Rudolf. Affairs are in an exceedingly complicated condition. Rassendyll has been recognised and acclaimed king in the capital, owing to his remarkable resemblance to the deceased monarch.

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Rupert of Hentzau

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