Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe

Having never read the novel before, I still felt like I knew the story, simply because of all the references to it that exist in various media. What is not generally known is the quality and style of writing and the very illuminating before and after chapters, particularly his dangerous travails in seventeenth century France, that had more than its share of wild trails and snarling beasts.

People who think this book is boring probably think hikes through majestic mountains or quiet afternoons in a beautiful garden are boring. This book is slow at times. But the slowest parts are the best. Defoe is a master of detail. And the action is much more exciting when it comes after the calm. A book with only action would be boring to me (not to mention corny, e.g. Treasure Island).

This is, hands down, my favorite novel of all time. Rich detail, gripping plot, profound character development, insightful meditations, and the meeting of two radically different worlds in Robinson and the cannibals. I never stop reading this book. When I finish I start again. I love Robinson and Friday as if they were a real life father and brother.

This is also an introspective work, with a loner of more than twenty years having plenty of time on his hands to consider social, economic, political, philosophical and theological mysteries.

A book everyone should read.

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