Being the Adventures of a French Prisoner in England
self! I kept my seat, at first in the confusion of my mind, later on from policy; and she stood, and leaned a little over me, as in pity. She was very still and timid; her voice was low. Did I suffer in my captivity? she asked me. Had I to complain of any hardship?
'Mademoiselle, I have not learned to complain,' said I. 'I am a soldier of Napoleon.'
She sighed. 'At least you must regret La France,' said she, and coloured a little as she pronounced the words, which she did with a pretty strangeness of accent.
'What am I to say?' I replied. 'If you were carried from this country, for which you seem so wholly suited, where the very rains and winds seem to become you like ornaments, would you regret, do you think? We must surely all regret! the son to his mother, the man to his country; these are native feelings.'
'You have a mother?' she asked.
'In heaven, mademoiselle,' I answered. 'She, and my father also, went by the same road to heaven as so many others of the fair and brave: they fo
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Aaaaagh! The ending was missing! The story, though rather linear, was entertaining and written with RLS' usual style and wit. Set in the early 1800s, the story is told from a first person perspective, following St Yves the French prisoner's journey up and down the length of England. Compared to Treasure Island, St Ives is a little pedestrian and hardly jam-packed with derring-do, but I liked it better for that. Apparently, there is an ending written by Arthur Quiller-Couch, which I would like to read as the story was probably only a few pages shy of its exciting denouement.
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It's an excellent book; more so, for me, as it was one of Stevenson's last books. BUT it's not complete. Couch finished the book and chapters 31-36 are harder to find online but can be found. Someone should make a complete ebook.