Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Review: Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks

Year of Wonders Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Anna Frith, a housemaid in a village stricken with the plague in 1666, emerges as an unlikely heroine with the ability to adapt and continue to move forward despite unthinkable calamities and death. Her village decides to try to quarantine the plague to the village boundaries and what follows is a year of great sadness, death and misery, but also a change and strengthening in Anna.

I am really impressed with Anna. She is a humble housemaid, her husband and two children die; she grew up with an abusive and horrible father and lives to see many horrors. Where she is at the beginning of the book and where she ends up by the end is quite fantastic. This quote from the book really describes her spirit; "You Anna, have recalled to me what my duties are. . . for you grieve and yet you live, and are useful and bring life to others."

This book is GRAPHIC - not in a sexual way so much, but just in the description of human suffering and death and decay and oozing sores and other yucky bodily fluids. The baseness of illness and bodily functions are described quite vividly here. There are scenes that discuss the plague sores bursting that unfortunately I will always remember. But to me, this makes a great book - being able to describe things so that you can really believe them. And make you thankful for the modern cleanliness and hand sanitzer.

An interesting read based on true events in the village of Eyam, England during the plague. This is really more like 4.5 stars for me.

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1 comment:

Gerbera Daisy Mom said...

I loved this I have all of G. Brooks' books.