Catriona

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Overview

Catriona is the sequel to Kidnapped and one of Stevenson's own favorites. He considered it his "high water mark," saying he would "never do a better book."

We rejoin David Balfour, who, no sooner than he's back in his Edinburgh estate, gets caught up in the aftermath of the Appin murder. He knows the accused man is innocent and plans to testify, but is waylaid by adventure, during the course of which he falls in love with the Rob Roy Macgregor's granddaughter, Catriona. ...

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Catriona (Barnes & Noble Library of Essential Reading)

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Overview

Catriona is the sequel to Kidnapped and one of Stevenson's own favorites. He considered it his "high water mark," saying he would "never do a better book."

We rejoin David Balfour, who, no sooner than he's back in his Edinburgh estate, gets caught up in the aftermath of the Appin murder. He knows the accused man is innocent and plans to testify, but is waylaid by adventure, during the course of which he falls in love with the Rob Roy Macgregor's granddaughter, Catriona. Obstacles plague Balfour, but the struggle is the story. We give nothing away by saying it ends on a hopeful note.

"A great adventure, a touching love story." (B-O-T Editorial Review Board)

This is the sequel to Kidnapped and Stevenson considered it to be his best work.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786115167
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/28/1999
  • Format: Cassette
  • Edition description: Unabridged, 7 Cassettes
  • Product dimensions: 6.12 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 1.28 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert Louis  Stevenson

Robert Louis Stevenson was born in 1850 in Edinburgh, the son of an engineer. He briefly studied engineering, then law, and contributed to university magazines while a student. Despite life-long poor health, he was an enthusiastic traveller, writing about European travels in the late 1870s and marrying in America in 1879. He contributed to various periodicals, writing first essays and later fiction. His first novel was Treasure Island in 1883, intended for his stepson, who collaborated with Stevenson on two later novels. Some of Stevenson's subsequent novels are insubstantial popular romances, but others possess a deepening psychological intensity. He also wrote a handful of plays in collaboration with W.E. Henley. In 1888, he left England for his health, and never returned, eventually settling in Samoa after travelling in the Pacific islands. His time here was one of relatively good health and considerable writing, as well as of deepening concern for the Polynesian islanders under European exploitation, expressed in fictional and factual writing from his final years, some of which was so contrary to contemporary culture that a full text remained unavailable until well after Stevenson's death. R. L. Stevenson died of a brain haemorrhage in 1894.

Biography

Robert Louis Stevenson was born in 1850 in Edinburgh. His father was an engineer, the head of a family firm that had constructed most of Scotland's lighthouses, and the family had a comfortable income. Stevenson was an only child and was often ill; as a result, he was much coddled by both his parents and his long-time nurse. The family took frequent trips to southern Europe to escape the cruel Edinburgh winters, trips that, along with his many illnesses, caused Stevenson to miss much of his formal schooling. He entered Edinburgh University in 1867, intending to become an engineer and enter the family business, but he was a desultory, disengaged student and never took a degree. In 1871, Stevenson switched his study to law, a profession which would leave time for his already-budding literary ambitions, and he managed to pass the bar in 1875.

Illness put an end to his legal career before it had even started, and Stevenson spent the next few years traveling in Europe and writing travel essays and literary criticism. In 1876, Stevenson fell in love with Fanny Vandergrift Osbourne, a married American woman more than ten years his senior, and returned with her to London, where he published his first fiction, "The Suicide Club." In 1879, Stevenson set sail for America, apparently in response to a telegram from Fanny, who had returned to California in an attempt to reconcile with her husband. Fanny obtained a divorce and the couple married in 1880, eventually returning to Europe, where they lived for the next several years. Stevenson was by this time beset by terrifying lung hemorrhages that would appear without warning and required months of convalescence in a healthy climate. Despite his periodic illnesses and his peripatetic life, Stevenson completed some of his most enduring works during this period: Treasure Island (1883), A Child's Garden of Verses (1885), Kidnapped (1886), and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886).

After his father's death and a trip to Edinburgh which he knew would be his last, Stevenson set sail once more for America in 1887 with his wife, mother, and stepson. In 1888, after spending a frigid winter in the Adirondack Mountains, Stevenson chartered a yacht and set sail from California bound for the South Pacific. The Stevensons spent time in Tahiti, Hawaii, Micronesia, and Australia, before settling in Samoa, where Stevenson bought a plantation called Vailima. Though he kept up a vigorous publishing schedule, Stevenson never returned to Europe. He died of a sudden brain hemorrhage on December 3, 1894.

Author biography from the Barnes & Noble Classics edition of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Good To Know

It has been said that Stevenson may well be the inventor of the sleeping bag -- he described a large fleece-lined sack he brought along to sleep in on a journey through France in his book Travels with a Donkey in the Cevennes.

Long John Silver, the one-legged pirate cook in Stevenson's classic Treasure Island, is said to be based on the author's friend William Ernest Henley, whom he met when Henley was in Edinburgh for surgery to save his one good leg from tuberculosis.

Stevenson died in 1894 at Vailima,, his home on the South Pacific island of Upolu, Samoa. He was helping his wife make mayonnaise for dinner when he suffered a fatal stroke.

Read More Show Less
    1. Also Known As:
      Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson
    1. Date of Birth:
      November 13, 1850
    2. Place of Birth:
      Edinburgh, Scotland
    1. Date of Death:
      December 3, 1894
    2. Place of Death:
      Vailima, Samoa

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2007

    Feminist Interpretation Off the Mark

    Robert Louis Stevenson's novel 'Catriona' continues the run of bad luck that befell the young narrator, David Balfour, in 'Kidnapped.' I am glad the book has won new life in the Barnes and Noble Library of Essential Reading, but I do take issue with the feminist interpretation given in the introduction by Caroline McCracken-Flesher, professor of English at the University of Wyoming. While it is easy enough to understand how turn-of-the-century post-modernists view women characters primarily from a pro-feminist, anti-Victorian mindset, Catriona just will not fit into that construct. Catriona is far more like a manipulative Zelda Fitzgerald than a reasoned Eleanor Roosevelt. She snivels behind a closed door to make herself appear a misunderstood lady of good breeding, exhibits unwarranted jealousy toward Barbara Grant, and switches from love to hatred of David from chapter to chapter and even page to page. She deliberately jumps from a ship which is taking her to a place of safety into a small boat taking her to a place where she does not know the language and has no money. This shows her not to be a risk-taking woman, but a she-cat at the mercy of her busy emotions. She has all the earmarks of a Borderline Disorder Personality. A strong feminist character would be more sublime. It would be better to read 'Catriona' as the continuation of the journey of a naive narrator who is not a good judge of those whom he must trust whether it be family, clan, king, friend, or the entire judicial system of Scotland. 'Catriona' simply continues his education in the ways of the world by extending to beauty what Stevenson had already proven to be true of the clans and factions of the eighteenth-century Scottish male. Davie simply cannot trust his naive view of life, loyalty, and love. McCracken-Flesher comments specifically on a passage near the end of the book where Davie invites Catriona to accompany him to visit her just-as-treacherous father, to which she coyly agrees, 'If it be your pleasure.' To this, Davie, in an aside to the reader, remarks, 'These were early days.' McCracken-Flesher believes this passage proves that 'narrating from a distance of years, [David] has grown into a fuller understanding of gender relationships and married roles.' Possibly. But I think it just as likely to indicate that it will take the naive Davie many years to understand what the sympathetic reader was aware of by the end of Part I: alas, Catriona's words do not match her agenda. That Davie falls for her shows not that women can be just as strong as men, but that they can be just as treacherous.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 29, 2003

    fantastic sequel

    True Stevenson fans will relish this continuation of the story began in Kidnapped. I loved the innocent interplay of the passion developing between David and Catronia. Alan Breck has a few interesting pages as well. Drenched in old Scot vernacular, you will not be disappointed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 18, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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    Posted December 5, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 17, 2010

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