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As a literary pioneer Daniel Defoe was one of those people who actually helped to create a form of writing, the novel to grow and become more popular in this country, and so with him and those early others we do owe him a debt of gratitude. Of course this was not the only thing that Defoe helped to create and contribute to but the fact that he was so very influential in the novel form means that he also helped to start the process of what we expect a modern novel to look like and read like.

I personally always enjoy reading this particular novel, although I would never get on a boat if the name Robinson Crusoe was to appear on the passenger or crew lists. If you wonder why because you have not read this before, then I think in the first few chapters you will get some idea, because although the most famous part of the story is his adventures as a castaway, he also before then gets taken as a slave and has ships that he sails on floundering into trouble.

On first publication this was certainly well received, and it is quite realistic. Written in the first person we read of how Crusoe grew up and wanted a bit of adventure, and even later in the story when we can see that he can clearly settle and take up life running his plantation he does not do so, still craving other experiences.

Although nowadays most people think there is only one influence on this book being written, that of the tale of Alexander Selkirk, if you actually look at the period you will find that there were many tales of very real castaways, along with other sources that were just as likely to be major influences on this tale. Although we read of the trials and tribulations of living what is at the start a very isolated existence there is also a strong undercurrent that runs through this that takes in both religious and philosophical elements. After all as Crusoe points out himself, he has money with him on the island, but of what use is it, as there is no one to buy things from? Such things are raised, which gives this a much greater depth than probably most people realise.

Some have seen in this story the attitude of the Colonists that left these shores to live in for instance America, but on a larger scale than that you can also see how us living in the Western World changed from hunting, to add agriculture and then settling and having to organise more complex matters, after all Crusoe has to divide his time in the right way, with the correct amount of time exerted on different issues, such as growing food as well as hunting for it, and building and maintaining shelter and other such items.

In all this is a well written book that has definitely stood the test of time, and at the basic level we have not altered from when this was first written, thus this still calls to us all, giving us a powerful and thoughtful read.
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on 8 April 2017
I hated this book with a passion. This was my very first set book in English Lit. in secondary school in the '50s ( aged 11 ) and the very first homework was to read the first 100 pages for a test the following week. Having been brought up on a diet of Enid Blyton, Malcolm Saville, Arthur Ransome, Frank Richards, and some RLS etc, I struggled with the archaic style, long sentences, and so on, and failed miserably. I vowed never to touch the book again.

Fast forward sixty years and I thought I should give it another try. I now find it very readable, interesting and even enjoyable. So never say never! The version I bought is from the hard cover, Collectors' Library edition. These books are a handy pocket size and smart looking with gilt edged pages, a page saver ribbon, and a durable spine. On the down side, the print is necessarily small and some may have difficulty with this size font. Maybe a touch expensive at £8.99, when you can get a paperback copy for £2.00 or less, but okay if you intend to keep it.
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on 20 September 2017
It's easy to forget quite how boring the unabridged Robinson Crusoe really is.

Imagine audio documenting all the happenstance of your average day - swept carpet, washed dishes, went to toilet, etc, etc.

And repeating that for chapter after chapter after chapter after chapter ....

Occasionally adding in a reading from a Jehovah's Witness pamphlet that had come through the door.

That would be equivalent to much of what this offering comprises.

And Tom Casaletto may well be an estimable voice actor in his own milieu, but as a purveyor of an "English" accent and style of reading he is toe-curling.
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on 27 March 2017
A classic book, for very cheap. Look up all the Wordsworth Classic editions on amazon; they're all under £2.
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on 7 April 2017
I'm absolutely fuming, I wish I could give this zero stars. Printed with no page numbers, what kind of crap is that??? Never in my life have I seen a book with no page numbers. And it cuts off randomly, meaning clearly the last few pages haven't been printed. They're just missing!? DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK. I've attached a photo of the last page, clearly cuts off prematurely.
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on 10 August 2017
Very disappointing and slightly strange as no title pages, no numbers on pages, which I can cope with, but main problem is that half of the book missing, stops roughly half way through! Returned book with these comments to be posted another identical copy. Meeting of my reading group in next couple of days and have only been able to read half a book. If you are buying, please us a publishing house that you recognise. Even more bizarrely, why a photo of a motorised boat on the cover?!!
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on 27 March 2017
A very enjoyable story but unfortunately some parts of the tape were not always too audible.
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on 17 February 2017
This was the early days of the novel as such and would have benefitted from the ministrations of an experienced publisher.
Robinson Crusoe can be read on several levels butI found most interesting the social interaction with his peers. Curiously, he merely mentions in passing that he is a slave owner and yet has a great admiration for the intelligence of Friday.
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on 14 August 2017
I obviously didn't read the blurb, this is a book with words of only one syllable...quite obviously not what I wanted. Hugely disappointed.
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on 29 April 2016
Fantastic story just a bit disappointed at free audio advert I didn't find it as simple as I was led to believe to link it all up. Maybe just me.
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