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Hope, Anthony

(British, 1863–1933)

Hope (full name, Anthony Hope Hawkins) wrote numerous novels, none of which have lasted except The Prisoner of Zenda (1894), a vastly entertaining, swashbuckling romance set in the invented central European kingdom of Ruritania. Its upper-class English hero, Rudolf Rassendyl, is a distant relative and exact double of the new king. When the latter is kidnapped before his coronation, Rudolf has to impersonate and then rescue him, foiling on the way the dastardly plots of the splendidly villainous Black Michael and his dashing henchman, Rupert of Hentzau, and falling hopelessly in love with the hapless King's prospective bride. The best of numerous film versions is the 1937 one with Ronald Colman and David Niven. Hope's sequel, Rupert of Hentzau (1898), is inferior but you'll want to read it if you liked the original.

P. C. Wren, Henry Rider Haggard, Robert Louis Stevenson. See ADVENTURE  MH

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionBooks & Authors: Award-Winning Fiction (Ha-Ke)