I find writing of this era sometimes difficult to read. In Vicar, the key character was a weak, religious individual who wished to do good and help his parishioners. However, he doesn't strike me as being very bright as perhaps the author intended. When he runs afoul of a parishioner who disgraces his daughter we begin to see more personality development. The vicar loves his family unconditionally and tries to shelter them from the evil of the world. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. We read the details about the parishioner and the vicar. The conflicts escalate until the vicar and his son land in jail. What happens next is a bit sappy and inappropriate in my view but the story was interesting for its capsule of life during the era.
Oliver Goldsmith's hugely successful novel of 1766 remained for generations one of the most highly regarded and beloved works of eighteenth-century fiction. It depicts the fall and rise of the Primrose family, presided over by the benevolent vicar, the narrator of a fairy-tale plot of impersonation and deception, the abduction of a beautiful heroine and the machinations of an aristocratic villain. By turns comic and sentimental, the novel's popularity owes much to its recognizable depiction of domestic life and loving family relationships.
New to this edition is an introduction by Robert L. Mack that examines the reasons for the novels enduring popularity, as well as the critical debates over whether it is a straightforward novel of sentiment or a satire on the social and economic inequalities of the period and the very literary conventions and morality it seems to embody. This edition also includes a new, up-to-date bibliography and expanded notes, and contains reprints of Arthur Friedman's authoritative Oxford English Novels text of the corrected first edition of 1766.
Witty and full of irmony--A great little classic. This was the author's only book.