John Buchan on disappearances and returns
"Any disappearance is a romantic thing, especially if it be unexpected and inexplicable. To vanish from the common world and leave no trace, and to return with the same suddenness and mystery, satisfies the eternal human sense of wonder."Buchan wrote adventure and espionage stories, but the themes of disappearance and return have attracted spinners of all kinds of stories almost forever, crime novelists among them. (Brian McGilloway's novel Gallows Lane begins with a return, as does Håkan Nesser's The Return, to cite two recent examples.) It's a hell of a way to begin a story, fraught with mystery, wonder, and—
But you tell me: What's the appeal of tales of disappearance and return? And what are your favorite such tales?
© Peter Rozovsky 2009