Thursday, December 16, 2010

Classic Review - Animal Farm by George Orwell (4/5 stars)

Animal FarmReading level: Adult/Young Adult
Genre: Satire/Political
Size:  139 pages
Publisher: Signet
Release Date: April 1st, 1996 (Originally in 1945)
ISBN-13: 9780451526342
Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone
Source: Swapped through
Rating: 4/5 stars
This book has been on my "to read" list for a while.  A satire of Orwell's opinion on totalitarianism, particularly on Stalin's rule, it was an interesting read.

When the animals at the Manor Farm decide to have a rebellion and overthrow the humans things are good for a while.  But when a stubborn pig named Napoleon takes over, things take a turn for the worse.  The animals are turned into the slaves of the pigs, yet are constantly reminded how things are better for them now then under oppressive human rule.

This was a very quick read and also entertaining.  It was actually very hard to put down, which surprised me.  I was totally concerned about what was going to happen to the animals under Napoleon's rule.  This is a very good read and points out a lot of problems with past and modern political systems.  It details the evil of being politically ignorant in a humorous but very effective way.  I was impressed with how convincing Napoleon's arguments to the animals were, from the outside it looks silly, but from the animals' perspective Napoleon seemed more reasonable than he should have.

This book teaches something that I think a lot of us are aware of from history, but it does it in a wonderfully engaging and humorous way.  I was surprised at how easy to read and well-written this book was; it is a book that has aged well and will apply pretty much forever.

Overall I am glad I read it.  I recommend that everyone pick up this book and give it a read through.  It is a quick read and is something that will stick with you; a great cautionary tale about how government can lull the populace into submission while taking advantage of them.

Animal Farm 

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