- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: OUP Oxford; New Ed. / edition (10 July 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0199549737
- ISBN-13: 978-0199549733
- Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 1.8 x 12.7 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 130,885 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- See Complete Table of Contents
Zofloya: or The Moor (Oxford World's Classics) Paperback – 10 Jul 2008
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About the Author
Kim Ian Michasiw is Associate Professor of English at York University, Ontario.
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Top Customer Reviews
I won't go into any further details of the plot but I would recommend this novel highly if you like unconventional styles of women's writing and aren't too easily shocked.
The basic premise is that Victoria di Loredani, an aristocrat born with a passionate nature, could have led a virtuous life had she been properly guided. Unfortunately her mother's adultery becomes the primary influence on Victoria's decelopment and we follow her descent from nobility into a life of crime, dissolution and degradation. Unfortunately the story dissipates into allegory towards the end, but despite this it is well worth reading. The plot is fairly well constructed and Dacre is an impressive stylist.
The notes to the Oxford World's Classics edition are generall helpful and unobtrusive. The introduction usefully places the novel in its literary and historical context.
Since 'Zofloya or The Moor' doesn't quite live up to its early promise I award it three stars.
The story opens in Venice in the late fifteenth century at a birthday party for the fifteen year old Victoria. That night Count Ardolpho comes to visit, and indeed stays as a guest. Victoria's parents are deeply in love and they have accomodated and spoilt their children to excess. Ardolpho gets his kicks out of destroying families and thus sets about seducing Victoria's mother. He succeeds and after Victoria's brother has left and her father has been killed the story enters its main path.
The story mainly takes place around Victoria and her adventures of captivity, escape, infatuation and lust. Zofloya the title character himself does not appear until halfway through the tale, and is the servant of Victoria's brother-in-law. With Zofloya, Victoria is drawn deeper down the path of criminality and vice; indeed if you have ever read The Monk (Oxford World's Classics) you will easily work out who Zofloya is.
This book in some ways reads more like a Jacobean play than others of the genre. On its first publication it caused a minor scandal, as women surely weren't supposed to write about some things. Indeed, Charlotte Dacre was ahead of her time writing about strong women with sexual urgings, this had always been the domain of male authors in mainly erotic fiction. This book is really good and frenetically paced, but the main question has to be, has she out-camped Matthew Lewis?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Wonderful! Very typical gothic novel. It is not too long, easy to read and exciting from beginning to end!Published 11 months ago by Sara Liverod