Customer Reviews for

The Seven Basic Plots: Why We Tell Stories

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2007

    A reviewer

    This book should truly be considered as the definitive reference guide for all aspects of the plot element in fiction. Using a vast selection of Western classic works as examples, Christopher Booker thoroughly examines the art of storytelling and reveals the seven basic plot structures as they appear in all literature: Overcoming the Monster, Rags to Riches, Voyage and Return, The Quest, Comedy, Tragedy, and Rebirth. Each type of plot is not only given a thorough, exhaustive treatment, but is also presented to the reader using everyday terminology (e.g., light/dark figures, above the line/below the line), which make this book very accessible as well as informative. This book would be a remarkable achievement if it only discussed these plot structures. Christopher Booker, however, has provided readers so much more. Using a Jungian framework, he expands his investigation of plots into a historical and psychological examination of storytelling itself. He presents readers with a complete philosophy, with stunning insights into why humanity should conceive of stories at all, and how our individual egos and humanity's inherent 'separation from nature' provide a plausible explanation. Anyone who has enjoyed the works of Carl Jung and Joseph Campbell will be captivated by the second half of this book. The writing itself, although it could be more concise (the ideas he presents seem somewhat repetitive at times) is very 'conversational' in its tone and is truly a pleasure to read. This book, including the research and required reading necessary for its creation, took Christopher Booker over 30 years to complete! The Seven Basic Plots was a real labor of love for its author, and we readers are lucky to have it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted July 24, 2010

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    Posted January 13, 2010

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