A Journal of the Plague Year is a novel by Daniel Defoe, first published in March 1722.
The novel is a fictionalized account of one man's experiences of the year 1665, in which the Great Plague struck the city of London. The book is told roughly chronologically, though without sections or chapter headings.
In the book, Defoe goes to great pains to achieve an effect of verisimilitude, identifying specific neighborhoods, streets, and even houses in which events took place. Additionally, it provides tables of casualty figures and discusses the credibility of various accounts and anecdotes received by the narrator.
The novel often is compared to the actual, contemporary accounts of the plague in the diary of Samuel Pepys. Defoe's account, although fictionalized, is far more systematic and detailed than Pepys's first-person account.
Daniel Defoe (c. 1660-1731), was an English trader, writer, journalist and spy, now most famous for his novel Robinson Crusoe. Defoe is notable for being one of the earliest proponents of the novel, as he helped to popularize the form in Britain, and, along with others such as Samuel Richardson, is among the founders of the English novel. A prolific and versatile writer, he wrote more than 500 books, pamphlets and journals on various topics (including politics, crime, religion, marriage, psychology and the supernatural).