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The Scarlet Pimpernel is a classic play and adventure novel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy, set during the Reign of Terror following the French Revolution. It was first produced as a record-breaking play in an adaptation by Julia Neilson and Fred Terry.

The play first opened on 15 October 1903 at Nottingham's Theatre Royal; it was not a success. But Terry had confidence in the play and, with a rewritten last act, he took it to London where it opened at the New Theatre on 5 January 1905. The standing ovation of the first night audience proved him right, but the critics were unimpressed. The London critics criticized it as old-fashioned. Despite that, the play became a popular success. It began a run of 122 performances and numerous revivals, becoming a favourite of the London audiences - playing more than 2000 performances, one of the most popular shows ever staged in an English theatre.

The novel was published soon after the play's opening and was an immediate success. Orczy gained a following of readers in England and throughout the world. With the demand high, she wrote a number of sequels over the next 35 years.

The success of The Scarlet Pimpernel, in novel and play form, allowed Orczy and her husband to live out their lives in luxury and comfort. Over the years, they lived on an estate in Kent, a bustling London home and an opulent villa in Monte Carlo. Orczy continued to create adventures for her "reckless daredevil" and watch his incarnations take life throughout the world. The play was performed to great acclaim in France, Italy, Germany and Spain, while the novel was translated into 16 languages. (Quote from wikipedia.org)
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Details

ISBN-10:  1606801422
ISBN-13:  978-1606801420
Author:  Baroness Emmuska Orczy
Genre:  Adventure, Historical novel
Date Published:  1905
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review by . August 06, 2010
          This book has been my favorite since I first cracked it open as a young teen. The emotions are varied, there's excitment, drama, romance, action, adventure and even comedy. I always find it vastly entertaining, even now as an adult, and always look forward to reading it. When I was adding books to my personal library, I looked for this one specifically, as it never fails to impress.         I recomment this book to anyone …
review by . August 07, 2010
The Scarlet Pimpernel by Barones Emmuska Orczy is her best work, and one of the greatest works of literature I have had the privelege to read.  While incorporating elements of all gneres--action/adventure, poetry, drama, comedy, tragedy, more--it remains a simple story of a girl and her rise above sadness to new hope.      I hope to pass this book along to many children as they grow, providing the same loveliness in their hearts that I felt when I finished reading it for …
review by . July 15, 2010
How much readers enjoyed this 1905 adventure can be judged by the fact that Orzy wrote thirteen more books about the Scarlet Pimpernel from 1906-1936 and by the more than several films and TV shows made of her story. The well-known tale is about Paris during the French Revolution. The Scarlet Pimpernel hides his true English identity and outwits the ruthless tyrants of the French Revolution, men and women who are determined to bring the citizens of France freedom and a better life, even if it requires …
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