The Thirty-Nine Steps Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Thirty-Nine Steps

In Buchan's most famous novel Richard Hannay, a mining engineer lately of South Africa, becomes embroiled in international conspiracy and intrigue. A man is murdered, he must fly to his beloved Scotland, run for his life. The murdered man's little black book holds the encoded key to the conspiracy, but both the police and the enemy are on his trail.
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The review of this Book prepared by Michael JR Jose

From the moment his friend had been murdered, Richard Hannay's own life is under threat, since he friend had previously told him of a political assassination that was to shortly take place in London.

Pursued by the police and killers, Hannay heads to his native Scotland to seek refuge, where a deadly game of cat and mouse ensues. He must persuade someone in the British Government of the impending danger, and to save the country from certain ruin.

The review of this Book prepared by Paul Antony Hayden

Chapter Analysis of The Thirty-Nine Steps

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Plot & Themes

Tone of story    -   very upbeat How difficult to spot villain?    -   Challenging    -   Somewhat obvious Time/era of story:    -   1900-1920's Spying/Terrorism Thriller    -   Yes Cloak & Dagger Plotlets:    -   main char. spying/sabotage    -   stopping a saboteur/spy Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Crime Thriller    -   Yes General Crime (including known murderer)    -   Yes Who's the criminal enemy here?    -   finding a known killer

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   infantry soldier    -   wealthy Age:    -   20's-30's


Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   England/UK Mountains/Cliffs    -   Yes City?    -   Yes City:    -   London Farm/Ranch?    -   Yes Farm/Ranch:    -   farm

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Unusual forms of death    -   impaled    -   perforation--swords/knives Unusual form of death?    -   Yes Amount of dialog    -   significantly more descript than dialog

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John Buchan Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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