A romantic tale of a young aristocrat's adventures during the French Revolution. At one point the hero joins a theater troupe to portray ''Scaramouche''. He also becomes a lawyer, a politician, and a lover, confounding his enemies with his elegant oration and precise swordsmanship. An excellent swashbuckler!
g to Gavrillac on a November morning, laden with news of the political storms which were then gathering over France, Philippe found in that sleepy Breton village matter to quicken his already lively indignation. A peasant of Gavrillac, named Mabey, had been shot dead that morning in the woods of Meupont, across the river, by a gamekeeper of the Marquis de La Tour d'Azyr. The unfortunate fellow had been caught in the act of taking a pheasant from a snare, and the gamekeeper had acted under explicit orders from his master.
Infuriated by an act of tyranny so absolute and merciless, M. de Vilmorin proposed to lay the matter before M. de Kercadiou. Mabey was a vassal of Gavrillac, and Vilmorin hoped to move the Lord of Gavrillac to demand at least some measure of reparation for the widow and the three orphans which that brutal deed had made.
But because Andre-Louis was Philippe's dearest friend - indeed, his almost brother - the young seminarist sought him out in the first instance. He found him at break
A masterpiece! A swahbuckling epic that carries you along. Sabatini's dialogue is absolutely wonderful. A must read.
Brilliant! One can easily see that Sabatini hit the "big time" with this novel - and it is clearly a precursor to his other two great adventures, Captain Blood and Sea Hawk. This one is not as much of a man's "love-story" as the other two but still has an interesting twist in terms of male/female relationships. Further Sabatini creates the perfect dysfunctional family atmosphere - whilst at the same time entwining the hero of the story within the arms and whims of fate. Thankfully his hero's are made of enterprising stuff - and Andre-Louis in this case is no exception.
An impressive novel. Lots of rhetoric, nevertheless the story really grabs your attention. I listened the audiobook and very much enjoyed Gord Mackenzie’s reading.
Similar to Sabatini's other bestseller, Captain Blood, there is a person content with his life, even introverted, that gets ripped out of perfect circumstances and thrown into boiling life where he must completely change and be leader, all the time staying true to himself. Additionally, this excellently written and gripping novel serves as history lesson about The Revolution, better than any dry history book. Not the usual Project Gutenberg quality of error freeness, it's still worth full points.
Compulsively readable and truly a delight! I enjoyed this adventure story thoroughly. This is the first ebook that's kept me up late.
This is a delightful book written by a master of historical fiction. It seems ironic that this master of literature, much like another of his contemporary authors, Conrad, was not English despite the fact he wrote exclusively in the language.
The book is divided into three sections covering the three lives that the main character's revenge carries him through. The story is, much like all of Sabatini's stories, one of high adventure with an ironic twist in the end. The story takes the main character from a political moderate to a revolutionary in a France before the usurpation of the Ancien Regime. His political metamorphises accompany occupational ones forced on him by the hostility of a Marquis, whom he has sworn to kill. His career changes take him from the robes of a lawyer, to the buckskin of an actor, and finally to the mask of a maitre d'armes.
Each of the acts of this novel are vividly painted. Sabatini was an excellent historian who wrote many books on various subject in the field; as such he is perfectly at home in the past and beautifully and accurately captures the mood of a tulmutuous epoch. He was also raised by a wandering troop of performers, and so writes from his childhood to describe the actors of a group of players from the Comedia Dell'Arte in late eighteent century France. His mastery of fencing is well displayed by the exact, techinical, and exciting handling of the many bouts and duels recounted in this fine work of historical fiction.
The only disappointing point of this book, and indeed it is a downfall only if you know Sabatini, is that its end is very typical of the author and is represented almost perfectly by his other work Master-At-Arms. Also, while it has a philisophical message about the history of man and the mechanics of societies it is somewhat hackneyed. These are the books' only flaws, however, and if you want a swashbuckling romance of epic proportions you need look no farther. It is one of the best edge of your seats adventure ever written and one does it no exageration by saying that it has the cold dangerous charm of a flashing sabre on a summer's afternoon, and the intellectual thrill of a brilliant chess match. The story is made even better by Sabatini's brilliant depiction of the two diametrically opposed protagonists of the book, each involved in an oath to see the death of the other, and involved in this oath to a depth that only gentlemen of yesteryear could possibly have been.