The Last Bookaneer by Matthew Pearl

What is a “bookaneer”, you may ask? It is not a pirate that reads a lot if that is what you are thinking.Though piracy of a kind does figure quite prominently into a bookaneer’s work.

This is the story of Penrose “Pen” Davenport, one of the greatest bookaneers in the time before the Twentieth Century and the beginning of the international laws protecting copyright. It is the story of one of the last escapades of the greatest bookaneers, the last battle between Pen Davenport and his rival the mysterious Belial. The prize is the final masterpiece being penned by Robert Louis Stevenson, who at that very moment lay dying in self-imposed exile in Samoa.

It is a battle for wealth, notoriety, and for revenge. When the struggle ends and the dust has cleared, there will only be one last bookaneer.