10 September 2007

Year of Wonders

This is Geraldine Brooks' first novel, and it's a good one. It's her story of one of the plague villages in England where the villagers quarantined themselves in the mid-1600s to stop the plague from spreading outside their town. It works, but the plague takes a devastating toll on the town.

Brooks writes excellent historical fiction here. Too much historical fiction misses the historical part (even if they manage the setting, the characters are too modern), but Anna and the rest of the characters are believable and authentic. And the questions the book raises would be fascinating to discuss.

My only concern was the last few pages. I thought the ending and epilogue was a bit weak and contrived, but Brooks is one of the few authors who could have even pretended to pull off the epilogue, but still, I didn't think it quite worked.



  1. I liked this book a lot until the end. The psychological twist was too wierd, and, though possibly theologically appropriate, seemed too analytically modern. It also ruined it, again IMHO, for the teen readership I am usually evaluating for.

  2. Yes, exactly. It was too analytically modern. And it really was a bit weird.