The Scarlet Pimpernel

The Novel

September, 1792: The French Revolution is nearing the height of what has come to be known as the Reign of Terror. Hundreds of heads are claimed by Madame Guillotine every day, and still the French mobs clamor for more. But the Revolutionary leaders are uneasy. Several escapes have recently been carried out successfully, escapes organized by an elusive figure only known by the sign of his presence, the English flower known as the Scarlet Pimpernel . . .

In England, the Frenchwoman Marguerite has found that her husband, the English lord Sir Percy Blakeney, has become a brainless fop. His love for her has grown cold through his knowledge of her denounciation of the Marquis de St. Cyr to the guillotine. When Chauvelin, an old friend of hers from Paris, asks her to help him find the Scarlet Pimpernel, though, she refuses, because she has come to admire the Pimpernel and his work against the misguided Revolution. But when Chauvelin has her brother Armand arrested in France for treasonous activities associated with the Pimpernel and his league, she is given a choice: Either she helps Chauvelin, or her brother will die.

Faced with the impending death of the only one who truly loves her, Marguerite reluctantly decides to help Chauvelin. Chauvelin, however, gives her no assurance that he has been successful. Not knowing whether or not Armand will be saved, Marguerite confronts Sir Percy in the garden, hoping to find some love still in him and entreating him to do what he can for Armand. Sir Percy remains cold to her, but promises to do what he can. Marguerite is reassured; but the next day she receives terrible news. In trying to save her brother, has she actually condemned her own husband to death?

Does it sound exciting to you? Then read the whole book! It can be found at most bookstores or in e-text here. For information about this or other Scarlet Pimpernel books (yes, there are more!), visit Anna's Unofficial Pimpernel Homepage. There you'll find a full listing of the novels and even some reviews! Enjoy!

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