Sir Walter Scott's gloriously panoramic novel, Rob Roy, is a splendid, rousing historical adventure, a vivid picture of Scotland, circa 1713, and the kinds of personalities produced by a world where good people still believed in romantic chivalry, while the aristocracy embraced decadence and courted intrigue.
Few novels can match it for suspense and narrative daring, and in the swirl and color of its characters.
Rob Roy is a hero because he will sacrifice his life rather than compromise his word. And the villains are magnificent because they are so smart, and cunning.
Scott’s tour de force of family intrigue has two heroes: Francis Osbaldistone, dispatched in disgrace from London, and the enigmatic outlaw, Rob Roy MacGregor.
Rob Roy achieved a tremendous commercial success, the original print run of 10,000, a huge figure for the time, being bought up in two weeks and helped establish the historical novel as a literary form. Critical response to Rob Roy at the time was almost unanimously favorable, with Scott frequently compared to Shakespeare.
SIR WALTER SCOTT (1771 – 1832) was a Scottish historical novelist, playwright and poet remembered for his extensive literary works and his political engagement. Many of his works remain classics of both English-language literature and of Scottish literature. Famous titles include Ivanhoe, Rob Roy, Old Mortality, The Lady of the Lake, Waverley, The Heart of Midlothian and The Bride of Lammermoor.