This is the spirited story of a survivor whose racy anecdotes and shady dealings only underline her essential warmth and goodness. But there is nothing sentimental about Moll, who presents herself warts and all. Though her adventures take her abroad, she remains the vivid creation of London.
Moll Flanders, pickpocket and prostitute–a mercantile genius trading in the oldest human commodity–has been for the past three centuries an enduring representative of reckless vitality combined with unshakable inner virtue. Daniel Defoe manages his story with such skill that our affection for his heroine increases with each astonishing sin she commits.
Moll’s adventures–possibly taken by Defoe from the story of some real criminal he met in Newgate, who “five times a wife, twelve year a thief, eight year a transported felon, at last grew rich, lived honest and died a penitent”–is told with the directness of narrative and reality of incident in which Defoe, often called the father of the novel, has never been equaled.
(Book Jacket Status: Not Jacketed)
Praise for Moll Flanders…
“The brilliance of Moll Flanders, and of the best of Defoe’s other novels, is that they dramatize the uncertainty that goes with the opportunism, and show us a world in which, if you can make yourself, you can lose yourself too.” –from the Introduction by John Mullan