The Flood by Emile Zola ( Book Review # 4 )

Our country   is not immune from any strong tropical storms since  it is located  near the  Pacific Ocean  where  typhoons  that usually hit  the eastern parts of Asia   develop.  In  October 2013, the world was appalled to hear the news that the super typhoon Yolanda, Haiyan for its international name,  completely devastated and wreaked   wide havoc  all over the southeastern  region of our country. Thousands of lives  were lost and  billion pesos worth of properties was destroyed. Thereupon, many countries from all over the world   expressed sympathies by donating billion dollars and offering solemn prayers. Grossly   disappointing, concerned critics  from different civil society have been vociferating  that  the  large amount of money must have been stolen by the corrupt government officials because until now the  areas affected have not been  rendered  full assistance and services.



This horrible, ghastly disaster is no longer new to us Filipinos. In fact, many typhoons,  although not stronger than  Yolanda, have   dashed against our hopes and left  unhealed  wounds in our hearts because of the aftermaths they brought about. One of these  is flooding.

The residents in Metro Manila will never forget the typhoon Ondoy in 2009. One of the scenes indelible in our minds  that was  broadcast on TV  was  this:


Almost all  the cities in the National  Capital Region were paralyzed  by this. Many people were stranded and  not able to go home from their work  nor meet their families.


Our family is fortunate that our city is not prone to this kind of disaster because  the city is mountainous. So, I am glad that I have never gone through this kind of experience  yet. Gee whiz!  I do not want to  get sick of post-traumatic stress  disorder. However, I  am still worried that our city may  sink as do other adjacent cities in the next generation since the  global warming is now at the eleventh hour.

emile-zola-novella-the-flood-mediumThe  Flood   is a true story. Emile Zola drew the inspiration from the flood happened  in Toulouse , France.

It appears that Zola knew how  it feels to be a victim of flooding. He must have  been one of the victims at that time  that he was able to put his  suppressed feelings into  such a masterpiece. That is why the story is well written.  The scenes are so perfectly depicted that they  sent shivers  up and down my spine .   Besides, the writing style is traditional, which I like in classics. However, the first plot  vividly depicted  prior to the flood sounds to be slapdash as though I was left hanging , for I  had wanted to keep glowered and bask in a happy typical of a family as well as the optimistic spirit among the characters- the  real situation experienced by the victims  before  the disaster . Furthermore, the story   does not tell where the  flood originates . Just it happens when someone shouts, “ The Garonne! The Garonne! “

On the other hand, I appreciated the ending. As  how a disaster begins,  it will run its due course when the  sky clears and the water calms down , a vast scenery of death will open to you- a nightmarish reality of life.

We cannot deny  the fact that  force of the  Nature is so powerful that the face of the Earth could almost be exterminated; that however means of  effort we make , this so-called natural phenomena is uncontrollable.  For some,  it could be an act of God . Be that as it may, but we must always keep in mind that ,  somehow,  to be in good harmony with the Nature is to be MORE RESPONSIBLE for it. Sadly,  we  still fall  ourselves into the abyss of  avarice and ignorance.

Think about our grandchildren in the future.


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