Friday, October 23, 2009

Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe

Category: Classic, Adventure
Published: 1719
Review: 4/5

I missed book club when they chose the next 6 books. When I heard that they had chosen Robinson Crusoe, I thought, "Okay?" Then I started reading it and by the time I was 20 pages in, I thought, "Who the heck suggested this boring book?" I was actually glad we were reading it because it forced me to read a classic that I may never have read otherwise. By the time I got to page 50 and came across a great quote I realized that this book was definitely worth reading even if it was boring and repetitive. Here's the quote:

"Upon the whole, here was an undoubted testimony that there was scarce any condition in the world so miserable but there was something negative or something positive to be thankful for in it; and let this stand as a direction from the experience of the most miserable of all conditions in this world that we may always find in it something to comfort ourselves from, and to set, in the description of good and evil, on the credit side of the account."

About half way through it starts getting interesting and by the time I was finished, I thought it was pretty good. Robinson Crusoe is considered one of the very first English novels so I feel inclined to forgive Daniel Defoe for the problems that exist like repetition and a implausibility. I really liked the lessons of repentance, endurance, faith, hope, and man's relationship with God. I did read a version that had been modernized a bit so that spellings, punctuation, and capitalization are presented in a way consistent with modern English grammar. Others in my book club who read a more historically accurate version were a bit distracted by the old grammar. If you choose to read it, you might try to decide which version would be better for your enjoyment.

Rating: 1.3.1 Contains violence.


Kath said...

I've this on my TBR pile for a while now. I do like the classics, but they sure could have used editors back in the day!! Sometimes it makes me wonder what an present day editor would do with some of these classics, how they would change them, etc. Anyway, thanks for the heads up, good reaview!

Brenda said...

"Who the heck suggested this boring book?" LOL, that sounds just like me! Another good review making me want to put a book on my TBR pile.

R Max said...

I felt the same way about "Les Miserables". Great story, just takes some determination to slog thru.

Thanks for the heads up re Robinson Crusoe!