Martin's Reviews > The Decameron

The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio
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's review
Jul 29, 2012

really liked it
Read in June, 2012

I was introduced to The Decameron through a required reading list and only read the selected stories as per the syllabus. I can't wait to read the whole thing, cover to cover, all 802 pages! The Decameron is comprised of 100 stories of love, loss, betrayal, wit, alliance and the erotic. Yes, I said "erotic" - even a bit shocking at times.

A group of seven noble Florentine women are in the church of Santa Maria Novella trying to figure out how they can get out of town during the Black Plague. Three young men enter the church. The leader of the female pack know one of the men so she asks them to accompany them to one of their country homes because women are not capable of travelling alone. They agree to accompany the noble women, obviously so that they too can escape Black Plagued Florence. They safely arrive at the country house and thus begins the story telling. To pass the time and to keep themselves entertained, everyone in the group tells one story per day. They tell stories of fortune, will, happy love, sad love, fast-talkers, pranksters and, of course, virtues.

Although Boccaccio wrote The Decameron in the 14th century, it is very readable and quite enjoyable. I wish modern short story writers would take a few tips from him and write something that is really worth reading.

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