Daniel Defoe’s novel is a delightful 18th century classic. Called “the truest realism in English literature” and “the tale of a hot, earthy wench,” it meets both expectations while also offering a remarkable portrayal of an ingenious mind. Moll is born in Newgate prison to a petty thief and is soon left at the mercy of whoever will take her in. From this unfavorable beginning, the lusty, resourceful Moll loves and bargains her way from rags to riches, from prostitution in the streets of London to prosperity on a Virginia plantation. Along the way, she offers a charmingly candid view of her life and times. His colorful characters like Robinson Crusoe earned Daniel Defoe instant popular acclaim. In Moll Flanders, he created a beautiful woman who still holds a unique place in British literature. Through Virginia Leishman’s sparkling narration, she steps from the pages full of exuberance and spontaneity.
Moll Flanders was, according to the long title of this work, "twelve year a Whore, five time a Wife (whereof once to her own brother), twelve year a Thief, eight year a transported Felon in Virginia," etc. Virginia Leishman's rendering of this novel is virtually flawless; it's well modulated, with no mispronunciations, stumbles or pauses. Still, it must be said that she seems overly controlled, too flat, more suitable for Jane Austen's well-appointed sitting rooms than for Moll Flanders' rumpled sheets. Earthiness, sensuality, high drama in the storytelling are needed to breathe excitement into an exciting narrative.
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Excellent Narration of Quite and Odd Book
A Classic that is timeless and almost poetry
I love this book! It a rare account of women's trials in the late 17th century, but oddly those trials still exist today. Good versus evil is a theme throughout. This novel helps explain that evil has 2 categories; evil for neccesity and evil for evil's sake. It causes the reader to question if the first is really evil?
Moll Flander's redemption and personal awareness of the choices that she's made while in Newgate.
I loved the scene when Moll helps one of her husbands escape. Her love of men despite their ill treatment of her is dumbfounding.
The way this book was written made me feel as though I was listening to music. I hope they never change the language of the book in an effort to put it in modern english.
- Michelle Pierce