Thursday, 4 August 2011

'Robinson Crusoe' by Daniel Defoe (1719)

Synopsis: Robinson Crusoe, the only survivor of a shipwreck, finds himself washed up on a deserted island. In his diary Crusoe makes a record of his daily battle to stay alive. He makes clothes and shelter, conquers depression, encounters another human being and is then forced to fight off cannibals and mutineers.

This book has had an influence on virtually every single desert island/castaway story that has come along ever since, including some of my favourites (i.e. Lost, Life of Pi and Treasure lsland). As you can imagine I was very curious to read this novel. However, this book was nowhere near as exciting and entertaining as I thought it was going to be. Some sections of this book are really quite boring and I really didn't care for Defoe's writing style - I found it pretty dry. Also, there's a very surprising lack of dialogue in Robinson Crusoe. This lack of dialogue is obviously understandable in the book's middle section but it's not so understandable for the opening and closing sections! Having said that, I enjoyed Crusoe's finding God and there is quite a lot of spiritual insight that could be taken from this book. I enjoyed Crusoe's encounters with Man Friday as well. I'm glad I read Robinson Crusoe but I don't think I'll ever read it again.

Rating: 3/5

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