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Lord of the Flies by William Golding

What it's about:
The classic, startling, and perennially bestselling portrait of human nature, a tale of a group of English school boys who are left stranded on an unpopulated island, and who must confront not only the defects of their society but the defects of their own natures.

My Thoughts:
I had never read this book before and I know almost everyone else in the world has. I didn't want to feel like I was missing out on a great book so I decided to pick it up. I was hoping for a really good epic "Lost on an Island" novel. However I hate to say it but..I couldn't stand this book. Now I admit that I didn't know much about this book before hand so maybe it was my fault but it just wasn't good in my opinion. The writing was confusing and way too "jumpy", I couldn't keep up with the characters and half the time I forgot who was who (probably because I just didn't care enough) and to top it all off, I felt that it was the same plot points repeated about ten times to make up the book. So yeah, I didn't like it and I don't really recommend it.

I am interested in hearing other people's thoughts on it though and why you feel the way you do about it.
Number of Pages: 202
Stars: 1


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 11th, 2011 06:18 pm (UTC)
I love this book because of the amount of thought that went into. To me it feels like Golding never wasted a line, there was always something in between the lines. Also I'm a big dork for 'little details', so I love the subtle things such as the butterflies and the flies.

Jul. 11th, 2011 06:25 pm (UTC)
My review: They needed the Dharma Initiative
”You should stick a pig,” said Ralph fiercely. “They always talk about sticking a pig.”
“You cut a pig’s throat to let the blood out,” said Jack. “Otherwise you can’t eat the meat.”
“Why didn’t you--?”
They knew very well why he hadn’t; because of the enormity of the knife descending and cutting into living flesh; because of the unbearable blood.
“I was going to”, said Jack. He was ahead of them, and they could not see his face. “I was choosing a place. Next time--!”
He snatched his knife out of the sheath and slammed it into a tree trunk. Next time there would be no mercy.”

I reread this book (the original 1954 edition, not the new one with the chainsaw massacre) because my daughter's school is using it as a springboard into its Western Civilization class, as sort of an Introduction to the whole topic. My first reading was years ago, and I was surprised to find it mercifully so much shorter than I had remembered. It is not a pleasant book.

I tend to see so many “civilization” books through the filters of what’s going on in the world right now. I see Piggy as the Democrats and other intelligent members of society, and Jack and Roger as the Republican politicians, trying to make the entire nation into that little island where conch shells and meetings are for elitist wusses, and the lowest common denominator is coming to make you into the blood sacrifice for their warped God who justifies all evil and creating EPIC FAILURE as far as your sphere of influence extends.

It amazes me that the same man’s mind can come up with both The Princess Bride and this dark tale, which was universally hailed as the masterpiece of its post-WWII time, and which makes me want to sharpen a stick on at least one end, in preparation for the day that the police officers in war paint come to round up the intelligent people for crimes against the American Way.

Word is, after it was all over, Jack was reunited with his abusive, alcoholic father, and, having discovered an aptitude for poking holes in people, decided to become a surgeon...
Jul. 11th, 2011 06:46 pm (UTC)
Re: My review: They needed the Dharma Initiative
Simon is Jesus. The story is The Fall of Man, the Temptation of Satan and execution of Christ--only there actually is no Satan. The evil is our own.

I guess that makes the Republicans evil, but that's not much of a surprise.
Jul. 11th, 2011 06:26 pm (UTC)

Oh, BTW, Golding didn't really write The Princess Bride; that was William GoldMAN. Sometimes in my original reviews I throw in stuff like that just to see if anyone's paying attention.
Jul. 11th, 2011 11:13 pm (UTC)
I was just about to correct you. :p
Jul. 12th, 2011 12:15 am (UTC)
I generally enjoy your reviews, but I have to ask, please stop doing this. It's really, really irritating to me, personally - and it comes off as very "PAY ATTENTION TO MEEEEEEE," rather than humorous or charming.

I mean, think of it in context of an in-person conversation - wouldn't you HATE talking to someone who did this all the time?

I'm certainly not angry or upset, by the way - I just find this an annoying thing to have to read for.
Jul. 12th, 2011 03:27 am (UTC)

But a blog post isn't an in-person conversation, is it now?

And also, my family does do that during dinner table discussions and pillow talk all the gorram time, when it's obvious it's a joke. "Michael Keaton? Yes, I remember I used to watch him on Family Ties when I was a kid..."

Oh, well...it's been a while since I've been Johnny No-Comments on my bookposts and I'm hardly ever corrected on the hidden whoppers. Not sure if that means people are paying more attention or less, but maybe I'll give it a rest for a while.
Jul. 12th, 2011 03:58 am (UTC)
I think this actually works worse in blog context than in person, because there aren't any tone markers to show where the joke is.

I suspect it's about 60/40 - people skim for what interests them/people don't bring it up because they don't want to be the "correcty" type. That's pretty much a pure guess, though.
Jul. 11th, 2011 07:02 pm (UTC)
I didn't like this book a whole lot either. That may be because I had just finished a high-detailed book before it and I wasn't interested in reading an entire chapter describing an island, or that it was a required reading which magically turns great books into terrible ones (I was lucky because most of the books that ended up as required readings I read previously --not so with Lord of the Flies).

However, I think disliking a book doesn't automatically mean you don't appreciate it. Although I don't like it, I understand how it was groundbreaking and well done. The idea that children are not perfect angels, or the civilization is only thing keeping us from becoming "savages" is an interesting, and controversial (especially at the publishing time) idea. I have a lot of respect for this book and William Golding. But vice versa, just because it's an important book doesn't mean I have to like it. (Or at least I tell myself that to feel better about not getting the hype.)
Jul. 11th, 2011 07:19 pm (UTC)
I don't think it was civilization preventing us from being savages--once off the island, the kids went back to a world still engaged in WWII.
Jul. 11th, 2011 11:34 pm (UTC)
I absolutely hated this book. First of all because it was required reading. Secondly, it is because the damned thing has little to no basis in the reality of what could or would happen. Add the redundancy issues you already mentioned and it's among my least favorite books EVER.

As for the savagery; civilization has no bearing on our ability to be nakedly savage in our response to certain stimuli. It's a perpetuated myth that this book puts forth as a truism.

Oh and the Biblical symbolism just annoyed me. I don't need religious tropes.
Jul. 12th, 2011 06:17 am (UTC)
It's been a while since I read the book, but I don't think the author is claiming that civilization prevents us from being savage--after all, the 'civilization' the boys are returning to at the end is in the middle of WWII.
Jul. 12th, 2011 06:00 am (UTC)
This is one of my favorite novels. I've read it three times and never tired of it. Hope you can give it another try. :)
Jul. 13th, 2011 06:38 am (UTC)
Sigh. To each their own.

This is definitely one of my favorite novels. I read it when I was younger, eighth grade maybe, so it was before anyone really had the chance to build the hype up for me. I find something new to love each time i re-read it.

did you find that you expected more of the book because of the hype surrounding it? I always ponder people's personal preferences (alliteration fully intended), and just think about how we could possibly interpret a book totally differently if we had read it earlier/later or were in a different mindset of stage in life and blah blah blah. I think back on books I didn't like so much and wonder if I could've gotten more out of them if circumstances had been different.

I will read anything, give anything a go. Would you suggest a favorite?
Jul. 13th, 2011 06:39 am (UTC)
Also, I always ALWAYS love the cover art for any edition of Lord of The Flies. So awesome!
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )

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