Elaine's Reviews > The Plague Tales

The Plague Tales by Ann Benson
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's review
Dec 04, 2008

liked it

Not great fiction, but an enjoyable read none-the-less. (Wish I could give this 3.5 stars.)

The book alternates chapters between a post-epidemic 1980s/90s in which our former surgeon/now medical archeologist-in-training heroine inadvertently looses an ancient strain of bubonic plagues on London; and our hero, the Jew-in-disguise doctor who is tasked with keeping the Plague from the royal family during the original outbreaks in the 14th C. But wait, reader, there is a connection between the two stories that creates part of the mystery and definitely some of the fun of this novel.

Lots of predictable stuff, but the characters are interesting and the plots move along at a nice brisk pace. The historical chapters hint intriguingly at the devastating economic and social impacts of the plague. (Some scholars argue that the rise of the middle class was largely due to the changes in landholding and tenant farming as a result of the plague-created labor shortages.)

Worth picking up.

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message 1: by Louise (last edited Nov 06, 2008 10:44AM) (new)

Louise Babirak Have wanted to read this one for a while! it looks great. We can discuss when i see you next!


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