Extended Audio Sample

Download The Thirty-Nine Steps Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Thirty-Nine Steps, by John Buchan Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (7,392 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John Buchan Narrator: Frederick Davidson Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Richard Hannay Series Release Date:
Regular Price: $11.95 Add to Cart
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $10.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Add to Cart learn more )

Perhaps more than any other book The Thirty-Nine Steps has set the pattern for the story of the chase for a wanted man. And, of the many writers who have attempted this kind of thing since Buchan, only a very few, like Graham Greene, have managed to sustain the tension in the same way. The story’s extended chase scene inspired Alfred Hitchcock’s movie of the same name.

The Thirty-Nine Steps, Buchan’s best-known thriller, introduces his most enduring hero, Richard Hannay—who, despite claiming to be an “ordinary fellow,” is caught up in a dangerous race against a plot to devastate the British war effort.

It begins calmly enough with a rather boring trip to London. Returning to his flat, Richard is shocked to find his neighbor dead on the floor with a knife in his back. Near the deceased is a small black notebook containing cryptic notes about the “thirty-nine steps” and a black stone. As the situation escalates, Hannay is mistaken for a secret agent by the police. Now he must run for his life across the Scottish highlands, thinking his way through narrow escapes while trying to decode the thirty-nine steps.

With wit and flair, this old-fashioned roller coaster ride offers soaring suspense with a comic touch.

Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “It is the dimension of the mysterious that makes Buchan’s writing so unfailingly compelling.”

    John Keegan, author of A History of Warfare

  • “Frederick Davidson’s voice is properly sardonic, and his supercilious British articulation is just right. The story’s extended chase scene inspired Alfred Hitchcock’s movie of the same name.”


  • “It is just the kind of fiction for here. One wants something to engross the attention without tiring the mind. The story is greatly appreciated in the midst of mud and rain and shells, and all that could make trench life depressing.”

    An officer on the front in World War I

  • “Buchan’s technique as a writer is simple enough and well displayed in The Thirty-Nine Steps. He understood that in a thriller…what matters above all is to keep the reader focused on what is going to happen next…It doesn’t matter that the reader has no clue where he is being taken or, when he gets there, how the thing happened as it did. All that matters is that once you’ve started, you can’t put the book down.”

    Telegraph (London)

  • “Buchan essentially invented the espionage novel with his Richard Hannay yarns.”

    Library Journal

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Texaskcr | 2/20/2014

    " Fantstic and really holds up- considering it was written so long ago. One can see the influence it has had over the mystery genre. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Kassandra | 2/15/2014

    " Sometime earlier this year I was watching BBC, which is a PBS production network that specializes in period dramas and they were airing a mini series called The 39 Steps.Right after watching the mini drama I did some research on the actual book since I completely relished the drama.Form then on I have been reading Richard Hannay's journey. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Melissa Page | 2/12/2014

    " Exciting for those who enjoy Hitchcock and espionage! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Hil | 2/8/2014

    " I was a bit disappointed with this to be honest. I grew up with the 1978 film with Robert Powell, and I don't mind that the plot is different, but it just wasn't as exciting either, and also rather confusing for my poor tiny brain. "

  • > Show All
Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations