Plot is the term used to refer to the storyline of a novel. But it is important to remember that in Kidnapped, plot also has another meaning - a secret set of plans to gain an objective.

Examples of plots in Kidnapped are:

  • the plot by Ebenezer to have David kidnapped and transported
  • the plot, by persons unknown, to kill the factor, Colin Campbell
  • the plot by David to expose his uncle and claim his inheritance

As there are three such plots, it may also help to think of the book as falling into three main parts:

  • in the beginning, David sets off to find his family. But he is kidnapped and transported in a ship which hits another ship on the west coast
  • in the middle, David survives the wreck and meets Alan right after the Appin Murder, which results in their flight through the Highlands
  • at the end, David and Alan return to the Lowlands to enlist Rankeillor’s help to trap Ebenezer