Read these 100-year-old books

by | Children's Books, Reading Aloud, Reviews | 2 comments

Post may contain affiliate links to materials I recommend. Read my full disclosure statement.


Books by John Buchan (1875-1940) are the kind that if you read one, you WILL read them all. We started with The 39 Steps which is the first book in the Richard Hannay series. Next comes Greenmantle, Mr. Standfast, The Three Hostages, and The Island of Sheep.

One would classify these books as “spy stories,” but they will also appeal to those who enjoy historical fiction. They are packed with W.W.I history. Written with lots of English and Scottish dialog (for those who like to ham it up while reading to the kids), Buchan’s style is lively and not for those whose diet consists mostly of Janette Oake.

After you’ve read the Hannay series, try Witchwood. Set in 17th century Scotland, this novel reveals some history you’ll never read about in your average social studies text book.


  1. Doug Atkinson

    Many of these books can be found in digital format at – a fantastic resource for public domain books. Just search on “John Buchan” and select “e-books only”.

  2. Hélène

    Devoured Witch Wood, tho it was slow going at first with the constant vernacular. The 39 Steps is much different but very good read. Loved Witch Wood …a Gospel message skillfully woven in amongst the excellent doctrine dispute made very real as it worked out in LIFE.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *