Dedicated to classics and hits.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Roxana by Daniel Defoe


by Daniel Defoe
p. 1724
Everyman Edition
Edited by Robert Clark
p. 1998

 I read this book three or four years ago, and I think I just didn't like it that much, so never wrote a review.  I think I read it before I seriously thought I could actually read all of the books on the 1001 Books To Read Before You Die, 2006 edition, list.

  Defoe has three books on the list: Robinson Crusoe (reviewed 2/11/08), published in 1719 arguably invented the Novel as an Art Form distinct in the larger field of "Literature."  Moll Flanders (reviewed 2/10/08) and Roxana both cover the same territory: the life story of a woman who is a mistress/wife/whore in bawdy 18th century, pre-Victorian prudishness times.

 Of the two, Moll Flanders came first, and Roxana was published two years later.  Both were 'hits' although the primitive state of the marketplace for literary work in the 1720s probably limited the fortune that Daniel Defoe attained (if not the fame.)

 It is strange to me that Roxana even made it onto the list, but it was written so early and Defoe just doesn't have anything other then these three novels to put on the list, so the 18th century section is thin enough with Roxana on the list.

  If you are keeping track of my progress on "closing out" the 18th century section of the 2006 edition of 1001 One Books To Read Before You Die, here is an updated scorecard:

(1)Amelia – Henry Fielding  *
(2) Peregrine Pickle – Tobias George Smollett  *
Fanny Hill – John Cleland (12/1/08)
Tom Jones – Henry Fielding (9/24/08)
Roderick Random – Tobias George Smollett (10/05/08)
(3) Clarissa – Samuel Richardson  *
Pamela – Samuel Richardson (10/12/08)
Jacques the Fatalist – Denis Diderot (11/1/08)
Memoirs of Martinus Scriblerus – J. Arbuthnot, J. Gay, T. Parnell, A. PopeJ. Swift (3/21/12)
Joseph Andrews – Henry Fielding (2/8/08)
A Modest Proposal – Jonathan Swift (3/26/12)
Gulliver’s Travels – Jonathan Swift (10/1/08)
Roxana – Daniel Defoe (4/18/12)
Moll Flanders – Daniel Defoe (2/10/08)
Love in Excess – Eliza Haywood (11/1/08)
Robinson Crusoe – Daniel Defoe (2/11/08)
A Tale of a Tub – Jonathan Swift (2/12/08)

  Samuel Richardson's Clarissa is a monster though- 10 separate volumes on the Amazon Kindle Store: NOT LOOKING FORWARD TO IT.

  After that it's only:

4) Julie; or, the New Eloise – Jean-Jacques Rousseau
5) Confessions – Jean-Jacques Rousseau
6) Dangerous Liaisons – Pierre Choderlos de Laclos
7) Reveries of a Solitary Walker – Jean-Jacques Rousseau
8) The Nun – Denis Diderot

9) The Adventures of Caleb Williams – William Godwin
10) Justine – Marquis de Sade


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