In the pages of his famous novel, Stevenson draws us two models of the individual’s behavior in society: the pagan individualism of the Master Ballantree and the Christian humility of his brother Henry. The life principle of the first is to satisfy your desires and whims at any cost. An extremely dishonorable person, a scoundrel and a murderer, Ballantra, however, causes respect and admiration even among sworn enemies. His opposite – the younger brother, who did not have the heart to repeat after the elder: “What I want, then I do!” And they all went to hell. ”
All his life he unhesitantly fulfills the duty dictated by society, and inner dissatisfaction destroys him as a person in front of the reader. The witness of the moral degradation of a once decent person is a trustworthy manager. Characteristically, if at first, after communicating with the elder brother, the manager, a good Christian, offers the gentleman a bargain-his life in exchange for the death of Ballantra, then in the final chapters he already pleads with God to take the youngest to himself-until he finally hates the former friend and patron.
The book is deliberately stylized as “old romances”, the main story is conducted on behalf of a servant named Ephraim McCullar, then serving the Scottish estate where Henry lives with his wife. A little archaic language makes one read every line, after all the reader gets a lot of pleasure and considerable food for the mind.