This collection contains an active table of contents (HTML), which makes reading easier to make it more enjoyable. The first table of contents lists the titles of all novels included in this volume. By clicking on one of those titles you will be redirected to the beginning of that work, where you'll find a new TOC. This book contains the following works arranged alphabetically by authors last names A Royal Prisoner [Marcel Allain] The Thames Valley Catastrophe [Grant Allen] Mr Standfast [John Buchan] The Three Hostages [John Buchan] Greenmantle [John Buchan] The Island of Sheep [John Buchan] The Thirty-Nine Steps [John Buchan] The Efficiency Expert [Edgar Rice Burroughs] The Man Who Was Thursday: a Nightmare [Gilbert Keith Chesterton] The Riddle of the Sands [Erskine Childers] The Woman in White [Wilkie Collins] The Rome Express [Arthur Griffiths] Lysbeth [Henry Rider Haggard] Desperate Remedies [Thomas Hardy] Rupert of Hentzau [Anthony Hope] The Prisoner of Zenda [Anthony Hope] The Apartment Next Door [William Andrew Johnston] The Film of Fear [Frederic Arnold Kummer] The Green God [Frederic Arnold Kummer] The Czar's Spy [William Le Queux] The Pit: A Story of Chicago [Frank Norris] The Double Traitor [Edward Phillips Oppenheim] The Evil Shepherd [Edward Phillips Oppenheim] The Kingdom of the Blind [Edward Phillips Oppenheim] The After House [Mary Roberts Rinehart] The International Spy [Allen Upward] The Bandbox [Louis Joseph Vance] Four Just Men [Edgar Wallace] The River of Death: A Tale of London In Peril [Fred Merrick White] The Dust of Death: The Story of the Great Plague of the Twentieth Century [Fred Merrick White]
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Thomas Hardy was born in Dorset in 1840. His first published novel was Desperate Remedies in 1871. Such was the success of these early works, which included A Pair of Blue Eyes (1873) and Far From the Madding Crowd (1874), that he gave up his work as an architect to concentrate on his writing.
However, he had difficulty publishing Tess of the D'Urbervilles (1889) and was forced to make changes in order for it to be judged suitable for family readers. This, coupled with the stormy reaction to the negative tone of Jude the Obscure (1895), prompted Hardy to abandon writing novels altogether and he concentrated on poetry for the rest of his life. He died in January 1928.
William Wilkie Collins was born in London in 1824, the son of a successful and popular painter. On leaving school, he worked in the office of a tea merchant in the Strand before reading law as a student at Lincoln's Inn. However his real passion was for writing and, in 1850, he published his first novel, Antonina.
In 1851, the same year that he was called to the bar, he met and established a lifelong friendship with Charles Dickens. While Collins' fame rests on his best known works, The Woman in White and The Moonstone, he wrote over thirty books, as well as numerous short stories, articles and plays. He was a hugely popular writer in his lifetime. An unconventional individual, he never married but established long-term liaisons with two separate partners. He died in 1889.
Sir Anthony Hope Hawkins was an English novelist, best remembered for his adventure novels "The Prisoner of Zenda" and its sequel, "Rupert of Hentzau".
John Buchan was born in Perth. His father was a minister of the Free Church of Scotland; and in 1876 the family moved to Fife where in order to attend the local school the small boy had to walk six miles a day. Later they moved again to the Gorbals in Glasgow and John Buchan went to Hutchesons' Grammar School, Glasgow University (by which time he was already publishing articles in periodicals) and Brasenose College, Oxford.
His years at Oxford - 'spent peacefully in an enclave like a monastery' - nevertheless opened up yet more horizons and he published five books and many articles, won several awards including the Newdigate Prize for poetry and gained a First. His career was equally diverse and successful after university and, despite ill-health and continual pain from a duodenal ulcer, he played a prominent part in public life as a barrister and Member of Parliament, in addition to being a writer, soldier and publisher. In 1907 he married Susan Grosvenor, and the marriage was supremely happy. They had one daughter and three sons. He was created Baron Tweedsmuir of Elsfield in 1935 and became the fifteenth Governor-General of Canada, a position he held until his death in 1940. 'I don't think I remember anyone,' wrote G. M. Trevelyan to his widow, 'whose death evoked a more enviable outburst of sorrow, love and admiration.'
John Buchan's first success as an author came with Prester John in 1910, followed by a series of adventure thrillers, or 'shockers' as he called them, all characterized by their authentically rendered backgrounds, romantic characters, their atmosphere of expectancy and world-wide conspiracies, and the author's own enthusiasm. There are three main heroes: Richard Hannay, whose adventures are collected in The Complete Richard Hannay; Dickson McCunn, the Glaswegian provision merchant with the soul of a romantic, who features in Huntingtower, Castle Gay and The House of the Four Winds; and Sir Edward Leithen, the lawyer who tells the story of John MacNab and Sick Heart River, John Buchan's final novel. In addition, John Buchan established a reputation as an historical biographer with such works as Montrose, Oliver Cromwell and Augustus.
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