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38 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Survival by Thinking and Doing
Robinson Crusoe is best taken at two levels, the literal adventure story of survival on an isolated island and as a metaphor for finding one's way through life. I recommend that everyone read the book who is willing to look at both of those levels. If you only want the adventure story, you may not be totally satisfied. The language, circumstances, and attitudes may put...
Published on 26 May 2004 by Donald Mitchell

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A great story between pages 60 and 200
I read what I thought was Robinson Crusoe as a child (and loved it) but that first version left out half the story (which turns out wasn't a bad thing). The story isn't really about a man being marooned on an island (though of course he is marooned for decades). It's really about one man's internal journey and how his view of life and himself change because he's forced by...
Published on 20 Feb 2012 by Cari Hislop


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38 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Survival by Thinking and Doing, 26 May 2004
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 122,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
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Robinson Crusoe is best taken at two levels, the literal adventure story of survival on an isolated island and as a metaphor for finding one's way through life. I recommend that everyone read the book who is willing to look at both of those levels. If you only want the adventure story, you may not be totally satisfied. The language, circumstances, and attitudes may put you off so that you would prefer to be reading a Western or Space-based adventure story with a more modern perspective.
Few books require anyone to rethink the availability and nature of the fundamentals of life: Water, food, shelter, clothing, and entertainment. Then having become solitary in our own minds as a reader, Defoe adds the extraordinary complication of providing a companion who is totally different from Crusoe. This provides the important opportunity to see Crusoe's civilized limitations compared to Friday's more natural ones. The comparisons will make for thought-provoking reading for those who are able to overcome the stalled thinking that the educated, civilized route is always the best.
One of the things that I specially liked about the book is the Crusoe is an ordinary person in many ways, making lots of mistakes, and having lots of setbacks. Put a modern Superhero (from either the comic books, adventure or spy novels, or the movies) into this situation, and it would all be solved in a few minutes with devices from the heel of one's shoe. Maybe I'm old fashioned, but I liked the trial-and-error explorations. They seemed just like everyday life, and made the book's many lessons come home to me in a more fundamental way.
Have a good solitary trip through this book!
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't expect an all out adventure!, 9 Aug 2001
By A Customer
Robinson crusoe must be one of the most instantly recogniseable and well known characters ever portrayed in fiction. The basics of the story - Crusoes desertion on a desert island, battle for survival and eventual triumph over adversity, appealing to people of all ages and backgrounds. Yet the archaic writing style can detract from the classic adventure story, as can the lack of real action. Instead the book comes across as a story of human resiliance and spirit, the fact that it is apparently based on the real life experiences of a stranded sailor make the story all the more remarkable. Thought to be the first "novel" ever published it is understandable that the writing does not flow in the same way as contemporary fiction, but the overall sophistication of Defoe's ideas is pleasantly surprising in the context that he HAD no contemporaries to influence him or compare to.
It is the romance of the story line that holds him in our collective consciousness and draws new readers to this book in their droves, but to read it as an adventure story of the "Treasure Island" mould is to miss the point, and will inevitably dissappoint. However, read it as a commentary on humanity and it is immensely valuable and enjoyable.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A great story between pages 60 and 200, 20 Feb 2012
I read what I thought was Robinson Crusoe as a child (and loved it) but that first version left out half the story (which turns out wasn't a bad thing). The story isn't really about a man being marooned on an island (though of course he is marooned for decades). It's really about one man's internal journey and how his view of life and himself change because he's forced by his solitary state to think about his past actions and the consequences of them. To me the interesting story starts about page 60 and ends soon after 200 while he's still alone on the island, before Friday the rather annoying saved cannibal-servant appears on the scene or the fantastical rescue.

After reading about the real man who inspired the story, Alexander Selkirk, I can't help wishing that Defoe had interviewed the man and then wrote the man's real story. It would have been equally bizarre, but more believable (particularly the real man's inability to settle back into Society - he lived in a cave for a while, married twice, but could only bear the married state for a very short time before running off...eventually back to sea where he died probably hoping to return to the island where he was happy with his goats and cats).

If you enjoy the history of words or getting into the head of an early 18th century man this can be an interesting book. If you like a story that flows smoothly and makes sense and has a sensible ending...you might want to watch a movie version.
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33 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Open your eyes., 14 Oct 2006
By 
P. J. Muldoon (U.K) - See all my reviews
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Just a quickie. Some of the above reviews remind us of how slow and boring this book can be and how repetitive. Well, guys, that's the point. How exciting do you suppose being stranded alone on an Island can be? What would you do to pass the time? Defoe takes us back to a time before T.V etc. Your day would be boring, although eventually menial tasks save ones sanity. Time does pass slowly as it looses relavance. It's not a classic for nothing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't Castaway, 19 Dec 2012
I expected Robinson Crusoe to be mostly the long philosophical reflections of an isolated man and was very surprised by how much happens. There are pirates, cannibals, plantations and bears. Robinson spends only around half the book on his famous island and even then we read about his adventures at farming, hunting, pottery etc.

The book is not simply an adventure story however and Robinson's thoughts on life and the divine are dotted throughout. I found these musings to be succinct and interesting giving the book weight.

Perhaps the thing that surprised me most is how clear and readable the language is. I understand that it might be the first English novel but I found it to be more modern than many books written later.

I only read it a couple of months ago and I am eager to read it again already.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic, 11 Feb 2009
By 
Mr. S. M. Rogers (Bournemouth, Dorset U.K.) - See all my reviews
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I am not quite sure what the other reviewers of this text expected from the world's oldest English novel. I do feel that they may think that it does not live up to the film / television versions.

However, if one reads from the understanding that this text is almost 300 years old, and that to truly understand it properly, you need an 'AS' or 'A' levels or higher in English; then in the context of the period it stands out as a true work of the writers' art.

If you want a Hollywood romp, then watch the DVD. If you want to learn how and why Daniel Defoe wrote this, then this book is a good place to start, with excellent notes and an introductory essay by Oxford University academics.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent gift, 15 July 2011
A beautifully presented book with fantastic drawings. The subject matter is written thoughtfully and at an adult level. As a gift, this worked perfectly.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Better than expected, 24 Mar 2014
Considering that there actually isn't much of a plot with this book I was still utterly engaged from beginning to end. It's not an edge-of-your-seat type of drama but the writing is so excellent that you are compelled to keep reading - and thinking. Read it! Even if you think you know the story.

A note on the OneWorld Classics edition - spelling has been modernised which for me personally was a negative to this edition. Notes are sparse but satisfactory.
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5.0 out of 5 stars good read, 17 Mar 2014
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Fantastic read and not too heavy. It's easy to get lost within the book I read it in a day couldn't put it down.
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4.0 out of 5 stars happy to read again, 4 Mar 2014
By 
Ali_M. (Newcastle Upon Tyne) - See all my reviews
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I last read this book over forty years ago, I have just finished reading it again and thoroughly enjoyed it. It's a tale of boys own stuff, I feel that it's a book everyone should read.
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Robinson Crusoe
Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe (Hardcover - 6 Dec 2001)
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