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The master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis…

The master of Ballantrae (original 1888; edition 1965)

by Robert Louis Stevenson, Lynd Ward (Illustrator), Alvin Eisenman (Designer)

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1,620296,795 (3.64)98
Title:The master of Ballantrae
Authors:Robert Louis Stevenson
Other authors:Lynd Ward (Illustrator), Alvin Eisenman (Designer)
Info:New York, Heritage Press [1966, c1965]
Collections:Fine Printing, Your library
Tags:Fine printing, Press books, Heritage Press, George Macy, Fiction - England

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The Master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis Stevenson (Author) (1888)



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English (26)  French (2)  German (1)  All languages (29)
Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
Robert Louis Stevenson is in a constant shoving match with [a:Anthony Trollope|20524|Anthony Trollope|https://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1199114248p2/20524.jpg] to be my favorite Victorian. If it comes down to it, its pretty clear which man would win.

Hint: Its not the one who writes sensitive drawing room think-pieces.

The Master of Ballantrae has all the trappings of an adventure story, but what the reader ends up with is a novel about the allure of evil and how, by inches, we're drawn to it even as we're on guard against it.

The story is the narrative of Ephraim Mackellar, steward to the Duries, a prominent noble family of Scotland, and how it was fractured by the Jacobite uprisings of 1746. There were two brothers and their father ordered the younger son to join the rebellion while his heir and favorite, the Master of Ballantrae would support the English King so that the family would be safe whatever the outcome of the rebellion. But the Master refuses to stay behind and makes his brother Henry stay home at Durrisdeer instead.

The rebellion is a failure and nothing is heard of the Master for many years. In the meantime the Master's intended bride marries Henry out of duty. But the Master is alive and returns full of spite against his brother and all smiles sets about destroying the family and estate in such a way that his brother can only take the blame.

There's more, of course, but the novel centers on the conflict between the dry, responsible and unloved Henry with his charismatic manipulative brother who effortlessly gains the affections of those around him. This is a dark book and the humor that Stevenson attempts to inject into it, mostly at the expense of the stiff "old maid" Mackeller, fails to lift the spirits. Its a dark book, perfect for adding an additional chilly layer to wintertime. ( )
  ManWithAnAgenda | Feb 18, 2019 |
This book reminds me of “The Turn of the Screw.” Evil corrupts good through dread and also fair-speech and manners. ( )
  kat_the_bookcat | Feb 7, 2019 |
The Master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis Stevenson is a sweeping adventure story about the rivalry between two brothers that unfolds over many years and is set in Scotland and the early American wilderness. One brother is evil and one is good, but most people find the evil brother charming while the good one is solid and rather boring. When the favored son and heir, James joins Bonnie Prince Charlie at Culloden in 1745 he leaves behind his younger brother Henry, his father and his fiancee, Alison. When he is presumed dead after the defeat of the rebels, the younger brother becomes the Master of Ballantrae and marries the fiancee but is always second best with his father, his wife and his tenants. When the news is brought that the egotistical and abusive James is still alive the torment of the younger brother begins.

The author uses the themes of good and evil, life and death to spin a colorful tale of adventure, sorrow and revenge. This book was first published in 1889 and certainly stands the test of time as it is still a page turner. Although it can be a little over the top in terms of drama, there is plenty of action that keeps the story interesting and moving along. The Master of Ballantrae is a dark romanticized story of a divided family and the consequences of extreme hatred. ( )
1 vote DeltaQueen50 | Dec 19, 2018 |
An overlooked classic and maybe Stevenson's greatest work. A Gothic adventure with the same sense of fated family tragedy as Wuthering Heights. As profound and technically interesting as Bronte's classic, but a more exciting read. ( )
  JackMassa | Nov 23, 2016 |
Two brothers lives are entwined though they are very different characters, even in death they are not separated. ( )
  brakketh | Sep 13, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (38 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Stevenson, Robert LouisAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bentley, B. AllenIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ward, LyndIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The full truth of this odd matter is what the world has long been looking for, and public curiosity is sure to welcome.
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This is the main work for The Master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis Stevenson. Do not combine with omnibus/combined editions, anthologies, adaptations, abridgements, etc.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0895776294, Hardcover)

Set at the time of the Jacobite uprising, The Master of Ballantrae tells of a family divided. James Durie, Master of Ballantrae, abandons his ancestral home to support the Scottish rebellion - leaving his younger brother Henry, who is faithful to the English crown, to inherit the title of Lord Durrisdeer. But he is to return years later, embittered by battles and a savage life of piracy on the high seas, to demand his inheritance. Turning the people against the Lord, he begins a savage feud with his brother that will lead the pair from the Scottish Highlands to the American Wilderness. Satanic and seductive, the Master was regarded by Stevenson as 'all I know of the devil'; his darkly manipulative schemes dominate this subtle and compelling tragedy.This edition takes as its text the Edinburgh Edition of the novel, the last approved by the author. The introduction considers the novel's inspiration and its place as one of Stevenson's greatest studies in cruelty.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:03:56 -0400)

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"August 1863. Henry Ireland, a failed landowner, dies unexpectedly in a riding accident, leaving a highly strung young widow. Not far away lives Ireland's friend James Dixey, a celebrated naturalist who collects strange trophies - a stuffed bear, a pet mouse, and a wolf that he keeps caged in the grounds of his decaying house, lost in the fog on the edge of the fens.""The poachers, Dewar and Dunbar, with their cargo of pilfered eggs; Esther the observant kitchen maid, pining to be reunited with her vanished admirer; the ancient lawyer Mr. Crabbe, made careless by snobbery; John Carstairs, in search of his cousin, the elusive widow; an enigmatic debt-collector, busily plotting an audacious robbery; various lowlife henchmen; a beady-eyed country curate who sees more than he should; and Captain McTurk of Scotland Yard, patiently investigating the circumstances of Mr. Ireland's death and many other things besides - all are drawn into a net of intrigue with wide and sinister implications."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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