The French Revolution is in full swing and the aristocracy are being sent to the guillotine in their hundreds. In the shadows, English dandy Sir Peter Blakeney - working under his alter ego, the Scarlet Pimpernel - is breaking the condemned out of prison and leaving his distinctive calling card, a picture of a red flower, to torment the French authorities. A master of disguise, infamous escape artist and flamboyant swordsman, his identity is such a closely guarded secret that even his wife is in the dark. But, with enemy agents on close his tail, his failure to trust her might be his undoing.
The very first hero with a secret identity, the Scarlet Pimpernel is a worthy precursor to Zorro and Batman. His daring antics (and undeniable flair) are just as delightful today as they were a century ago.
Designed to appeal to the book lover, the Macmillan Collector's Library is a series of beautiful gift editions of much loved classic titles. Macmillan Collector's Library are books to love and treasure.
A swashbuckling classic of action-adventure with one of the most distinctive heroes in fiction - the flamboyant Scarlet Pimpernel. With an introduction by Dame Hilary Mantel, the Booker prize-winning author of Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies
Baroness Emma Orczy was born in Hungary in 1865, the daughter of the composer Baron Felix Orczy de Orci. The Orczy family, fearing a peasant revolution, left their country estate for Budapest in 1868 and settled in London in 1880. There Emma attended art school and met her future husband, a clergyman's son, Montague MacLean Barstow. Following the birth of their only child, she began writing historical novels and plays to supplement his low income. The Scarlet Pimpernel was her first play (and third novel) and proved an enormous success in both mediums. Orczy went on to pen over a dozen sequels, as well as many other novels. She died in Oxfordshire in 1947.