The tiny kingdom of Theos is surrounded by Eastern European powers in this 1902 novel of politics, war, and romance. Russia and Turkey are plotting to take over the peaceful and rural country. A short lived Republic has been treacherously betrayed by communist elements. The country turns to its exiled King, Ughtred of Tyrnaus, a prince who has been a soldier in Britain for 20 years. The prince is convinced by Baron Nicholas of Reist to return to Theos and be crowned.
Opposing the new King is the wily Russian, Baron Domiloff, who preys on the pride and snobbishness of other members of royalty to oppose the King. The King is in love with an American heiress Sarah van Decht. But he is betrothed to the beautiful Marie Reist by an ancient ceremony. The King is aided by Brand, a reporter for the Times of London, and the Paris Herald Tribune.
Several interesting side notes. Ruritania was the Kingdom created by Anthony Hope in the Prisoner of Zenda. Many other authors followed suit with novels set in imaginary Eastern European capitals in the period leading up to WW1.
Continuous action, changing alliances, loyalty and betrayal are all in play.
As the novel progresses, the villains of the story increasingly appear to be middle-class Russian Jewish merchants of the capital city, who are aligned with Russian and against the monarchy. Notwithstanding this contemporary calumny, the novel is excellent.
- Hardcover: 254 pages
- Publisher: Wentworth Press (26 February 2019)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0469905026
- ISBN-13: 978-0469905023
- Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 1.6 x 23.4 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 535 g
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