Reading Backwards

Book reviews by your favorite Git.

A Journal of a Plague Year

with one comment

By Daniel Defore
He won’t be getting the royalties, but, hey… @Amazon
Read: January/February 2007
Rating: Not Unpleasant

I try to use only one word in the ratings, but there isn’t really an equivalent for ‘not unpleasant’ without outright saying ‘pleasant’, which isn’t really the same thing. And then you get into all this double-plus-ungood stuff and Big Brother descends to take you away. So, 2 words. (Take THAT, Minitrue!!)

I’m in a class called 18th Century British Fiction. Hence, some 18th Century British… somewhat fiction. There’s a lot of controversy about whose story is actually portrayed. Only one thing is certain: Defoe himself was 5 years old during the plague in question. Hurr.

I quite enjoyed it, despite the messy, rambling style. The narrator repeats himself and references events completely out of order. Nevertheless, I like the speaking voice. I’m always interested in history, so having an up-close portrayal of London in 1665, during an attack of the plague, was wonderful.

There isn’t really a plot, and it’s not a journal the way we think of them now–no dated entries. Just one… huge… block of text. Seriously. Punctuated not by breaks, but excerpts from the public records, stating how many people died of what during a certain week in which part of town. There’s a lot in here that could turn someone off. I’m surprised at myself for liking it.

So, happy I read it. Not sure I’d reccomend unless you like that sort of thing.


Written by Shen

February 8, 2007 at 4:31 pm

One Response

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  1. Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.


    September 10, 2009 at 8:44 am

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