What would you do if you open your eyes in the morning only to realise that you have reached an isolated, uninhabited island?
The mid-seventeenth century novel Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe is, in my opinion, a unique, descriptive, thrilling, adventurous and gripping fictional autobiography. Written in 1719, the novel is based on the true experiences of a marooned sailor Alexander Selkirk. The novel mainly focuses on the protagonist Robinson Crusoe, a young Englishman who left his native place, family and acquaintances in search of adventures calamities and challenges. It is this decision that leads him to a world of adventures.
Crusoe is a defiant son and without any consideration of the circumstances or consequences, he leaves his home and goes on a voyage in August 1651 where he encounters a shipwreck by a dreadful storm. Yet again, he sets off for another odyssey because of his strong aspirations, but some pirates take over his ship enslave him. He appreciably manages to escape from slavery two years later.
On another occasion, again, while on the sea, he is shipwrecked and becomes the only survivor. He reaches a deserted island but wasn’t from yellowbellied peoples. Overcoming his fear, he makes the most of the salvages as he begins to grow crops, make bread, domesticate livestock, raise goats and make a canoe for himself with high strong fences. And last, but not least, he gets himself armed for self-defence.
He arrives on the island on September 30, 1659, and that day onward, he used to make a clear mark on his calendar every day to track time. Later, he encounters ferocious savage cannibals, among whom he makes a trustful friend ‘Friday’. On the island, he becomes religious and so optimistic that he thinks of himself as the king of the island.
Crusoe can be described as a brave, gallant, adventurous, ambitious, civilised, powerful, self-assured and self-reliant man. This is the reason why I believe this novel is so fascinating and gripping. It fully rings with adventures. The reader may be immensely impressed with the way Crusoe expresses his experiences — which is so spectacular and eye-catching way.
One aspect I found a little disappointing was that Crusoe becomes so religious that he fears the consequences of defying his father, but he expresses none of his emotions about leaving forth. Moreover, he used to make a mark every day to remember the dates, informing all his events. But he never tells us his meeting date with his friend ‘Friday’. Furthermore, the narrator uses a rhetorical grandeur, instead of a dramatic style.
All in all, I was left unmoved by this novel of isolation and I would highly recommend this book to adventure-loving hearts. And I challenge you that, once you start flipping through the pages, you will lose yourself in the wave of the book.