"When I think of Rob Roy I am impatient with all other novels; they seem but shadows and imposters; they cannot satisfy the appetite which this awakened."
—Robert Louis Stevenson
Scott's tour de force of family intrigue has two heroes. Francis Osbaldistone, dispatched in disgrace from London, joins his foxhunting cousins at their ancestral seat in Northumberland. His suspicions of villainous Rashleigh Osbaldistone, and the request of Diana Vernon, the cousin whom Francis loves, draw in Scott's other hero, the brave, bitter Highlander and enigmatic outlaw Rob Roy MacGregor.
Set on the eve of the Jacobite rising of 1715, Rob Roy (1817), in some ways does not give up its secrets until the very last page. Few novels can match it for suspense and narrative daring, and in the swirl and color of its characters we can agree with Hazlitt: "Sir Walter has found out (oh, rare discovery!) . . . That there is no romance like the romance of real life."
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