The 39 Steps
by John Buchan
'My guest was lying sprawled on his back. There was a long knife through his heart which skewered him to the floor.'
Adventurer Richard Hannay has just returned from South Africa and is thoroughly bored with his London life - until a murder is committed in his flat, just days after the victim had warned him of an assassination plot that could bring Britain to the brink of war. An obvious suspect for the police and an easy target for the killers, Hannay goes on the run in his native Scotland, where he must use all his wits to stay one step ahead of the game - and warn the government before it is too late. One of the most popular adventure stories ever written, The Thirty-Nine Steps established John Buchan as the original thriller writer and inspired many other novelists and filmmakers including Alfred Hitchcock.