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The king of the fictional country of Ruritania is abducted on the eve of his coronation, and the hero, an English gentleman on holiday who fortuitously resembles the monarch, is persuaded to act as his political decoy in an attempt to save the situation. A modern reader might sympathize with Black Michael the King's brother, kidnapper, and attempted usurper of the throne because the King is introduced as a somewhat irresponsible and flippant individual, and because some quarters of the population prefer Michael to Rudolf.

In the book itself, however, Michael is portrayed as cowardly and treacharous, while his supporters among the people are mostly dismissed as being of a "largely criminal" class and King Rudolf is stated to be preferred by other parts of the populace. The book is responsible for many tropes on this site that are listed below. Likewise, it has been remade into several films, books and episodes of series since.

Not to be confused with The Legend of Zelda. Sign In Don't have an account? Start a Wiki. Rudolf shaves his beard when he begins to impersonate the king. Both the king and Rudolf are bearded to begin with, but the beard removal is a convenient justification for why something about the king seems off. Somewhat subverted in that after she misses the first shot, she pauses and visibly forces herself to calm down. Rudolf doesn't wait for her to aim properly. Did Not Get the Girl Emergency Impersonation : Rudolf first impersonates the King at the coronation when Prince Michael drugs the king hoping to discredit the King by making it look like he missed his coronation due to a horrendous hangover.

Later becomes more serious once the King's abduction is discovered. Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas : During one of their bantering conversations, Rudolf, who like others knows about Rupert's womanizing and immoral behavior causing his mother grief, comments "Thank God" when Rupert replies in the affirmative that his mother is dead. This angers Rupert and causes him to momentarily lose his affable mask. Nobody seems to remember there is a second part for Rudolf's adventures, called as his enemy, Rupert of Hentzau. The Downer Ending in which both Rudolfs die may have much to do with its fall into oblivion.

Foe Yay : Rudolf and Rupert, arguably. The sequel features a scene where our hero " gripped Rupert's wrists, and with his greater strength he bent back the count's pliant body till trunk and head lay flat on the table. Neither man spoke; their eyes met; each heard the other's breathing and felt the vapor of it on his face.

Gentleman Adventurer : Rudolf is an example of the good version, and the book also has an Evil Counterpart on Michael's side, Detchard, who is a mercenary but just as loyal to Michael as Rudolf is to the King. Heroes Want Redheads : Princess Flavia, in this case. Heroic Bastard : Rudolf, the hero, is illegitimately related to the royal family of Ruritania. Black Michael is a "double bastard". Honor Before Reason : If not for this, the plot would have been: Rudolf exiles or kills Sapt and Fritz von Tarlenheim, lets the king get killed, marries the girl and becomes king in his own right.

Sapt lampshades it about a third of the way in. Improvised Weapon : The tea-table used to Shield-Bash three men. Pragmatic Adaptation : The Ronald Colman film version is generally considered to be the best of the cinematic versions and one of the best swashbucklers ever made, though it changes some details, as in introducing Hentzau near the beginning and making Flavia a blonde.

Prisoner of Zenda Exit : A namesake trope. The Ruritania Trilogy 3.

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Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Rupert of Hentzau , please sign up. And where is the third one?! Prisoner of Zenda. Rupert of Hentzau. See 2 questions about Rupert of Hentzau…. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Of course Rudolph must speed to her rescue and once again take up his imposture of the King of Ruri 2. Of course Rudolph must speed to her rescue and once again take up his imposture of the King of Ruritania while that somewhat feckless cuckold is still on the throne and not, this time, safely tucked away in a prison.

The ostensible narrator, Fritz von Tarlenheim, is almost as stupid, though not quite. The only really interesting characters were, obviously, the villain of the piece Rupert of Hentzau, of whom there was far too little in the text even though his name is on the title, and good old pragmatic Colonel Sapt, apparently the only one of the heroes with a working brain in his head and of whom there was just enough.

Alright, all of that sounds so critical that you may be wondering how I could give this anything more than a rating of 2. Well, I am willing to give this one some leeway given the era in which it was written and the fact that it was merely going along with the expectations of the day. This was another librivox recording and I was again lucky with the narrator, Andy Minter did a great job of it.

All in all a fun swashbuckler. View all 9 comments. I bought this book in Pembroke. This detail is almost irrelevant, except that Pembroke is one of my favourite towns in West Wales and has an extremely impressive castle. But it's not really like the castles of Ruritania, which are probably more Germanic looking. I finished re-reading The Prisoner of Zenda almost a year ago to the day, and I adored it. I thought it was a tremendous swashbuckling adventure novel.

It had great momentum and was a real page-turner for me. I have now finished re-readin I bought this book in Pembroke. I have now finished re-reading the sequel, Rupert of Hentzau , and I adore it too, but not quite so much. It's a longer novel for a start and the pacing, although fast, isn't quite as breath-taking as the first book. Also the author, Anthony Hope, a very accomplished writer, chose a peculiar way of framing the narrative of this more complex novel. A lot of the action is told from the point of view of a character not actually present during most of the described events, but who reconstructs them from what he afterwards learns.

To add to the confusion, this character is sometimes present. The result is slightly strange and distancing, a mixture of reliable and possibly unreliable narrative, including a few scenes that are openly admitted to be pure speculation. But on the whole it is an excellent read; an authentic swashbuckler. The villain, Rupert himself, is a magnificent character.

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Unlike so many novels of this type, it is the bad guy who is constantly on the back foot, outnumbered and having to rely on his considerable wits in order to survive his permanently precarious position. This aspect humanizes Rupert and makes him seem almost likeable; or if not likeable, than certainly admirable in some ways.

The duel in which he must desperately fight for his life in a narrow attic is a superb set-piece. I have stressed that this was a re-reading of the book. I first read both novels when I was about 15 but although I remembered parts of the first book, I remembered absolutely nothing about the sequel. It was as if I was reading it for the first time.

A sequel that is not as good as the original: the plot is weaker and requires a lot of behind-the-scenes explanations and jumping around the timetable to keep the subplots together. The change in narrator also doesn't help, as Fritz is not present for a good part of the events in the book and it's not as interesting to read a second hand account of events compared to the 'memoirs' feeling of the first Zenda. This change in narrator is also a very bad foreshadowing of the disappointing finale in A sequel that is not as good as the original: the plot is weaker and requires a lot of behind-the-scenes explanations and jumping around the timetable to keep the subplots together.

This change in narrator is also a very bad foreshadowing of the disappointing finale in which view spoiler [, after 50 pages of debating whether it is right or not for Rudolf to be King and marry Flavia, the author avoids the question altogether by killing him off without revealing what he actually had decided; this, quite probably, because the 'right' decision would have offended the fin de siecle puritan sentiment by legitimizing Flavia's adulterous love hide spoiler ]. Just stop reading at the end of the first book and remember Ruritania as it was.

A major theme that runs through much of great literature is the conflict betweeen Duty and Love. In "The Aeneid", Virgil has Aeneas choose duty over love. This conclusion was the majority opinion throughout Western history up until the time of the Romantics, who elevated Love above Duty. In the "Prisoner of Zenda", Anthony Hope danced a bit around this question in A major theme that runs through much of great literature is the conflict betweeen Duty and Love.

The Prisoner of Zenda/ Rupert of Hentzau by Anthony Hope | LibraryThing

In the "Prisoner of Zenda", Anthony Hope danced a bit around this question in the midst of his ripping adventure yarn, and, like a good subject of the British Empire, gave the Roman answer to the question: Duty Wins. In "Rupert of Hentzau" Hope revisits the question, ramps up the moral dilemma, increases tension to the breaking point and finally It's a shame really since the first book was so good. I did enjoy certain aspect of this sequal to "Prisoner of Zenda", the plots, the overall story-telling. I think part of the story was told better than the first book.

The Prisoner of Zenda

However, I am not certain why the author chose the voice of Fritz as the narrator of the story. Fritz was not present in many of the key scenes which make the narration awkward. And above all, I was disappointed at the ending. Ahh well. I still like Anthony Hope very much. Queen Flavia writes a fateful letter to her true love Rudolf Rassendyll. Sequel to The Prisoner of Zenda.

Stars Julian Glover. Ruritanian Romance. This would make no sense at all if you haven't got The Prisoner of Zenda under your belt. View all 10 comments. Truely a magnificent piece of work!


  • Coco y el bote (Spanish Edition)?
  • The Prisoner of Zenda.
  • Rupert of Hentzau.

A brilliant sequel, perfectly consistent with the first book. Once again the last paragraphs are beautiful. A stirring, noble story. That a better man could be a better king was, in my humble opinion, unconceivable for an Englishman. Still Hope came the nearest to it as he could!!! However, as I progressed with it, I found myself caught up in the web and was spellbound as the tale unfolded. A swashbuckling story of high treason, intrigue, love and above all honour. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. However, when I reached college, I was advised by a trusted college friend, who had similarly loved The Prisoner of Zenda, that I should just leave Ruritania where it had been left at the end of that great novel.

So, wary, I left Rupert on the shelf for a decade. I read it, though, a couple of weeks ago.

The Prisoner of Zenda / Rupert of Hentzau

And I loved it, and I sort of thought that my friend was right, too. First, the book was very well written. Immediately, it grabs you.

The plot, too, is just about as urgent and tortuous in a good way as the first novel. So, I thoroughly enjoyed reading through the novel, just about as much as I did The Prisoner of Zenda.


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But then there was the ending. I cannot mark the novel down too much for the ending, because, in truth, it seems like the only way that things could turn out. Rupert of Hentzau is an excellent novel that fans of The Prisoner of Zenda will likely enjoy. You should just be warned about it, too, though. The tone shifts from The Prisoner of Zenda : gone is the optimistic energy and spirit of adventure, thanks to the lackluster narration of Fritz and to the story revolving around a defensive action on the part of the protagonists. And all of it not to avert war or save a life, but to pr The tone shifts from The Prisoner of Zenda : gone is the optimistic energy and spirit of adventure, thanks to the lackluster narration of Fritz and to the story revolving around a defensive action on the part of the protagonists.

And all of it not to avert war or save a life, but to protect the honor of a woman who, let's be honest, is neither dynamic nor interesting. The story really lights up when the stylishly villainous Rupert of Hentzau himself blusters onstage, and the one scene between him and Rudolf is magic. Apr 16, K.

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Shelves: blood-and-morality-tales. This is the sequel to "The Prisoner of Zenda. I really loved the narrator from the first one better, the second is a little drier--but it was part of the story and it was great.