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The Thirty-Nine Steps

John Buchan

Book Overview: 

Richard Hannay’s boredom is soon relieved when the resourceful engineer is caught up in a web of secret codes, spies, and murder on the eve of WWI.

Recommended for fans of Tom Clancy and the Bourne series by Robert Ludlum.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .There was no plan of campaign in my head, only just to go on and on in this blessed, honest-smelling hill country, for every mile put me in better humour with myself.

In a roadside planting I cut a walking-stick of hazel, and presently struck off the highway up a bypath which followed the glen of a brawling stream. I reckoned that I was still far ahead of any pursuit, and for that night might please myself. It was some hours since I had tasted food, and I was getting very hungry when I came to a herd's cottage set in a nook beside a waterfall. A brown-faced woman was standing by the door, and greeted me with the kindly shyness of moorland places. When I asked for a night's lodging she said I was welcome to the 'bed in the loft', and very soon she set before me a hearty meal of ham and eggs, scones, and thick sweet milk.

At the darkening her man came in from the hills, a lean giant, who in one step covered as much ground as three paces of ordi. . . Read More