Year of Wonders

Year of Wonders

A Novel of the Plague

Paperback - 2002
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An unforgettable tale of a brave young woman during the plague in 17th century England from the author The Secret Chord and of March , winner of the Pulitzer Prize.

When an infected bolt of cloth carries plague from London to an isolated village, a housemaid named Anna Frith emerges as an unlikely heroine and healer. Through Anna's eyes we follow the story of the fateful year of 1666, as she and her fellow villagers confront the spread of disease and superstition. As death reaches into every household and villagers turn from prayers to murderous witch-hunting, Anna must find the strength to confront the disintegration of her community and the lure of illicit love. As she struggles to survive and grow, a year of catastrophe becomes instead annus mirabilis, a "year of wonders."

Inspired by the true story of Eyam, a village in the rugged hill country of England, Year of Wonders is a richly detailed evocation of a singular moment in history. Written with stunning emotional intelligence and introducing "an inspiring heroine" ( The Wall Street Journal ), Brooks blends love and learning, loss and renewal into a spellbinding and unforgettable read.
Publisher: New York : Penguin Books, 2002.
ISBN: 9780142001431
Branch Call Number: Fic
Characteristics: 308, 11 p. : map ; 20 cm.


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juliarosewaters Sep 13, 2018

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

Jan 02, 2018

This is a compelling read. Despite the overall topic of bubonic plague I had a hard time putting this down. The brutality of living in this time is overwhelming by itself but putting the plague on top of it is almost too much to much to read about when wanting an escape from our times. The heroine of this historical fiction constantly finds more strength within to make her keep going and help others when her own existence is so precarious. Her search for knowledge is inspiring and explains why I continue to want to learn also. I want to read more from this author.

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.

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CRRL_AdrianaP Nov 07, 2013

"How was I to face the days and nights to come? There would be no other relief for me; in my two hands I held my only chance of exit from our village and its agonies."


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