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Year of Wonders

A Novel of the Plague
Brooks, Geraldine (Book - 2001 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Year of Wonders
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From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of March and Caleb's Crossing #151;an unforgettable tale of a brave young woman during the plague in 17th century England 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.
Authors: Brooks, Geraldine
Title: Year of wonders
a novel of the plague
Publisher: New York : Viking, 2001
Characteristics: 308 p. :,map ;,24 cm
Statement of Responsibility: Geraldine Brooks
ISBN: 9780142001431
0142001430
9781417627530
067091021X
Branch Call Number: FICTION BROOKS
Subject Headings: Plague Fiction Great Britain History Charles II, 1660-1685 Fiction
Genre/Form: Historical fiction
Topical Term: Plague
LCCN: 00052757
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Library Staff

The way people worked and lived, the fabric of their lives, comes to vivid life in this novel about a small English village in 1666.

A visionary young preacher convinces the villagers in a small English town to seal themselves off in a quarantine to prevent the spread of disease. The story is told through the eyes of eighteen-year-old Anna Frith, the vicar's maid, as she confronts the loss of her family, the disintegration of... Read More »

2002: Brooks knows how to write characters who feel real, and in this story she creates a woman who struggles to survive the plague in a small village in 1666.

When an infected bolt of cloth carries plague to an isolated village, housemaid 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.

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 superst... Read More »


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Jul 16, 2014
  • Janice21383 rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Anyone remember Forever Amber, the historical romance in which the heroine personally experiences every significant event in mid-17th England? The Year of Wonders isn't as bad as that. For one thing, the servant/heroine Anne has a proper name for her time. For another, she doesn't run into the famous, e.g. King Charles II and the court don't flee the plague through her village. And the story focuses on one, naturally eventful year. Even so, the plot is pretty much a laundry list of every dreadful, and sometimes wonderful event that could happen in an isolated village in a plague year. And the ending, while avoiding the obvious "happy" turn, is extremely eye-rolly. I don't want to discourage anyone from reading it, because most episodes are well written, but for a better book on the plague, please see Daniel Defoe's Journal of the Plague Year.

Apr 21, 2014
  • Recommended by KCLS Librarians rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

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.

Dec 16, 2013
  • ehbooklover rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

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.

Dec 03, 2013
  • mooncat rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

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.

Nov 07, 2013
  • CRRL_AdrianaPuckett rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

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.

Jul 19, 2012
  • fictionrules rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

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.

Dec 12, 2011
  • mberk rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

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
  • LuciaLeblanc rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

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

Apr 21, 2011
  • TheSponge rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

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
  • tessyjay rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

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

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Young Anna Frith, a vicar's maid, is faced with the loss of her family, the disintegration of her local community, and a passionate, illicit love as she and her village confront the horrors of the plague, in a historical novel based on real-life events in seventeenth-century England. 336p.

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Nov 07, 2013
  • CRRL_AdrianaPuckett rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

"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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