The Scarlet Pimpernel, Baroness, Emmuska Orczy
First published 1903
Source: Purchased for the 2015 Roofbeam Reader TBR Challenge
Armed with only his wits and his cunning, one man recklessly defies the French revolutionaries and rescues scores of innocent men, women, and children from the deadly guillotine. His friends and foes know him only as the Scarlet Pimpernel. But the ruthless French agent Chauvelin is sworn to discover his identity and to hunt him down.
Check another book off my 2015 TBR Challenge list! When I first stumbled onto The Secret History of the Pink Carnation years ago I was raving to my mom about this new series (everyone does this right?). Her response was “Just like the Scarlet Pimpernel,” which resulted in a blank stare from me. She explained the similarity and of course I learned yes, these were Lauren Willig’s inspiration. There may be spoilers here but the book is over 100 years old, so it’s not my fault if the mystery is ruined for you!
So it took me a few years to get to the The Scarlet Pimpernel, but I am so glad I finally read it! The Pimpernel is just as full of attitude and daring as his imitator the Pink Carnation! I loved his determination to beat the French despite the risks. I really didn’t think the romance would come through between Sir Percy and Lady Blakeney but I was definitely feeling the love in the end. I liked that the Scarlet Pimpernel has his own band of charming agents – just like those that I’ve fallen for in the Pink Carnation series. I really enjoyed the adventure! I might even keep reading the other Scarlet Pimpernel books eventually to see how similar they are. For being a classic this was a really light and fun read. I’m definitely in the mood to finish the Pink Carnation series now – just 3 books to go!
They seek him here, they seek him there
Those Frenchies seek him everywhere
Is he in heaven or is he in hell?
That demned elusive Pimpernel.
Bottom line, does it hold up to say a book by Jane Austen? No. But Sir Percy was delightful and honestly pretty swoon-worthy for a character over 100 years old! Thanks Mom for telling me to read this!
Next off my TBR Challenge List – Swamplandia!