Year of Wonders

Year of Wonders

A Novel of the Plague

Book - 2001
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Jan 15, 2021

Enjoyed this, but the situation of the Plague hit a bit close to home! Rather gory and graphic in parts - not for the weak stomached!

Nov 15, 2020

One of my very favorite books. So rich in descriptions and characters.

Oct 26, 2020

This is a novel about 1660 and the plague. It is not an easy read, but it is a great read. I felt like I was living in the 1660s with all their prejudices and superstitions!

Sep 16, 2020

An account of a year in the life of a 17th-century village afflicted by the bubonic plague. Suitable reading for 2020. Engrossing, moving, and ultimately satisfying.

IndyPL_SherryU May 20, 2020

I read Year of Wonders before COVID-19 was a blip on the radar. The idea that a village would have the collective strength and consideration for others they might come into contact with intrigued me. I never thought that a quarantine was in my future, but 2020 has been a year of new experiences for all of us.

I enjoyed this book very much, liked the plot, characters and setting, but then I am a sucker for historical fiction. As others have noted, the story does start to fizzle toward the end of the tale, not enough for me to stop reading, though! In fact, I enjoyed Year of Wonders enough that I also read People of the Book by this author.

Jan 03, 2020

I liked the book, but the last third seemed far too full of twists and turns and took the story away from a woman's contemplation and reflection on death, religion and duty to something that comes much too close to a romance novel.
A Goodreads review of the Mistress of Death by Ariana Franklin reminds me of the other problem I had with this book and other recent entries in the genre; the heroine invariably looks a lot like a liberated woman with very modern and very liberal values. I'm sorry to say that this seems rather endemic to recent female historical fiction writers (The Golden Mean, Sweet Girl, Mistress, etc).
That's why I LOVE Hilary Mantel. (and you should too!) She lets her characters be of their time.
I'm less disturbed by the marketing necessity of a "modern woman" than I am about packing the book full of exploits in the last third of it - "and then... and then... and then..." - which really upends the slow and thoughtfully paced interiority of the first sections.
It's a pleasant enough read and very well researched, but it doesn't come anywhere close to her very excellent "March".

Tigard_DeidraM Jul 26, 2019

I loved this book! Very engaging story...if you like dark, fictionalized history, this might appeal to you. Geraldine Brooks is one of my favorite writers.

juliarosewaters Sep 13, 2018

I enjoyed 90% of this book, but the end was bizarre and disastrous! :/

Jul 05, 2017

Quite by accident I took this novel with me on a trip to Sweden and Estonia, places that put the plague in historical context. I was in the library looking for a book that was "lightweight" to carry and "airplane readable," so my standards weren't very high. But this literary story formed a perfect backdrop while visiting the medieval Old Town of Tallinn, Estonia, and the many historical museums in Stockholm, all of which touch on plague events experienced locally and the horrific "treatments" employed trying to stop the scourge. The novel is full of surprises and some depictions, though historically accurate, are emotionally challenging. I was engrossed down to the final, uplifting sentence, which made the perfect coda to the story's journey.

LPL_ShirleyB May 13, 2016

This book is an elegantly written feminist view of a gothic period in English history, based on actual events. A movie based on this book is currently in production. In addition to this single copy of the book, we have a book club in a bag kit and a downloadable audiobook read by the author.

Jan 16, 2016

Outstanding historical novel, based on true events in 1665 England. This novel is a true gem and captured me before the first chapter was read. My thanks to the readers who leave comments on books, as they have steered me to new books and new authors every week.

PimaLib_MaryG Dec 07, 2015

An amazing novel about a town that quarantined itself as the residents died off from the Bubonic Plague to prevent it from spreading. The town is real - there is a historical marker, but not much is known so author Brooks used it as the basis for a richly crafted tale that drew me right in.

Oct 01, 2015

Beautifully written book! I would have given Geraldine Brooks 5 stars but I didn't like the end of the book. I'd rather she hadn't moved to a foreign country and raise her child to never be able to reconnect with her birth family.

Jan 07, 2015

set in medieval - pastor & wife key characters helping village deal w/ plague. housemaid is key and loses entire family, but ultimately is a heroine

Dec 30, 2014

This is a great work of historical fiction. The author does a fine job of making the reader feel as though they are experiencing these horrific events first hand. I will say that I hated the ending. I'm not sure how I would have liked it to end, we are talking about the Plague after all, but I was not satisfied. I'm willing to overlook that though, as the story was fascinating.

Based on the true story of Eyam, the “Plague Village”, located in the rugged mountains of England in 1666. As the plague ravages the village fearful villagers react with fear and jealousy as the local healer and the town’s minister try to keep the town from falling into complete chaos. This is a riveting novel that really brings to life the ethical and emotional impact dealing with the plague must bring.

ehbooklover Dec 16, 2013

This was recommended to me by a customer. It's about the English village of Eyam, whose residents attempt to control the spread of The Plague by quarantining themselves. Sounds depressing? That's what I thought at first. But I decided to give it a try anyways and I'm so glad I did. A gripping and beautifully written story that I could not put down.

mooncat Dec 03, 2013

I loved this book and thought it was beautifully written. However I was really disappointed with the ending as I didn't feel it fitting to the story.

CRRL_AdrianaP Nov 07, 2013

First, I have to confess that I am a huge fan of Geraldine Brooks and (so far) will 5-star all of her books. To me they are almost perfection. This book is absolutely heartbreaking in so many ways - to go from joy to despair and have the despair last so long - but I loved the journey.

Oct 18, 2013


Jul 19, 2012

Book about a plague in England during the 17th century. A small village cuts itself off from the world and deals with a misunderstood medical disaster. Based on a true story and researched by the author while she was on assignment as a reporter. The main character is a strong, resilent young women who almost lost it all. She revels herself to be a highly compassionate and forgiving women of unlimited resourcefulness. Loved it as I do all of this authors work so far. March is also brilliant and worth reading.

mberk Dec 12, 2011

Good book. Like Caleb's Crossing, strong female lead, very heroic, but not really congruent with the time, more with modern values. Overall enjoyable historical fiction.

Oct 24, 2011

Plot - introduce new character, dead by the end of the page

Apr 21, 2011

An unforgettable story!
Year of Wonders is a novel inspired by the true story of the little town of Eyam in Derbyshire, known as the Plague Village, during the years 1665 - 1666. Not exactly a happy topic, but well worth the time, I thought.

Mar 09, 2011

Fantastic book. Get it and read it! Geraldine Brooks is one of the best authors I've read.

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