Study Guide

Year of Wonders What's Up With the Title?

By Geraldine Brooks

What's Up With the Title?

This title is something else. It's more ironic than the crowd at an Animal Collective concert.

That's because few people whose town has been destroyed by the Black Plague would describe that experience as wonderful. More like horrible. Awful. Horrendous. A worse experience than Batman v Superman.

Despite these circumstances, the year actually is wonderful for Anna Frith. True, she suffers unthinkable tragedies on a near-daily basis. Despite that, she grows immensely over the course of the year, finding her calling as a healer and becoming a feminist before feminists were a thing. It won't undo the pain, but it might just make it worth it.

The title also references the idea of the annus mirabilis, which is a Latin term that refers to a year that is exceptional in some way. Well, we think this one certainly fits the bill. Check out "What's Up With the Epigraph?" for more insight into that concept.