From the book cover: William Golding's first novel, Lord of the Flies, was published in 1954. It is now internationally recognized as a twentieth-century classic, one of the most celebrated and widely read works of modern fiction.
A plane crashes on a desert island and the only survivors, a group of schoolboys, assemble on the beach and wait to be rescued. By day they inhabit a land of bright fantastic birds and dark blue seas, but at night their dreams are haunted by the image of a terrifying beast. As the boys' delicate sense of order fades, so their childish fears are transformed into something more primitive, and their behavior starts to take on a murderous, savage significance.
My take: I have a new habit. I have taken to checking out the Goodreads reviews on books before starting a book. Apparently, you either love LOVE it or you end up hating it. At least, according to those reviews that caught my attention. But upon finishing the book yesterday, my reaction was somewhere in the middle.
Let me explain. The story, no doubt, is brilliant. I loved the story line. Yes, the entire story and the characters that are brought out in the form of Ralph, Piggy, Jack, Roger or the twins reflect people that we see around us. Ralph is the leader, who believes in law and order. Piggy is perhaps the most vulnerable among the boys, who keeps making fun of him as he is on the heavier side.
Jack, is the hunter and clearly the leader who will go for what he wants at any cost. The boys are divided into littluns (kids who are around 6 years) and the biguns (who are the older boys). Though initially, they form rules and find a conch which is blown to call everyone together, it soon gives way to chaos and terror.
Everything in the book can be taken as a metaphor, be it the conch, the pig's head that is called "Lord of the Flies" by Simon in his hallucinations, or the beast. The rumors about a beast soon turns the boys into savages. But Golding portrays it brilliantly when he says that the beast is inside each one of us.
The story in itself was chilling. But the narration, didn't really work for me. Yes, it's a classic, so you can't really expect things to be fast paced. The entire book is the story of the boys as they are trapped on the island and their desperate measures to survive. Yes, towards the end, some of them portrays a blood lust that will send chills down your spine.
I would rate this one a three on five. I loved the plot and the characterization. The writing not so much. I felt my attention waning as the book progressed.
A Stephen King fan? You must definitely read this. This is what King had to say about this book "As exciting, relevant, and thought-provoking now as it was when Golding published it in 1954." Couldn't agree more with that. A must read for all lovers of classics and English literature.
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