“The Inheritance” By Annie S. Swan


Many of our readers know Annie S. Swan.

She wrote for the “Friend” between 1881 and 1944, but readers still mention her in letters 76 years later!

It may come as no surprise to some, then, that Annie was the most-read Scottish author of the 20th Century.

She was also a political powerhouse. Among other achievements, she campaigned for women’s rights, ran for office as an MP, and was a founder-member and vice-president of the Scottish National Party. Features Ed Alex wrote more about her in our current issue.

Unfortunately, much of the world has forgotten her and her work.

That’s why we’re so happy to have been able to bring one of Annie’s serials, “The Inheritance”, back into print — to be remembered and discovered respectively by old fans and new.

It’s the newest addition to our Classics Collection, and it’s available to buy now at the DC Thomson Shop.

Behind the scenes

Turning 112-year-old pages from our archives into a shiny, new book was no easy task. But it had one important plus point — everybody involved got to read the serial!

We were amazed at how original it still feels, and at how Annie tackled difficult topics, that would be challenging even to writers today, while maintaining the “Friend” tone.

More than once I found myself forgetting that I had a job to do because the story was so gripping! I particularly loved the characters, who are so easy to judge by their covers . . . 

What is “The Inheritance” about?

When the prominent and wealthy owner of a Dundee jute mill makes a last-minute amendment to his will, he couldn’t have predicted the consequences it would have for his family.

The arrival of a young woman with a mysterious past complicates matters even further, triggering a chain of events that could spell tragedy . . .

A fun fact

I’ll leave you with one more little fact about Annie — she was born on 8 July 1859.

That would make her a sprightly 161 today.

So, now there’s just one thing left to say . . .

Happy Birthday, Annie S. Swan!

Click here to buy your copy of “The Inheritance” at the DC Thomson Shop.

You can even buy it together with the first of “The People’s Friend” Classics Collection, Betty McInnes’s “The River Calls Us Home”.

Abigail Phillips

Abbie is the newest member of the fiction team at the "Friend." She loves how varied the role is - every day is different and there is always a new story to read. She is keen to work closely with established writers and discover new writers, too.