Animal Farm by George Orwell
Book of the Month
Animal Farm by George Orwell was first published in 1945 and will be celebrating its seventieth birthday next year. It is still a keen area of debate whether it remains relevant for readers of this generation - I certainly believe it is, and the fact that it is still studied as part of the United Kingdom’s English Literature curriculum would add further credence to this opinion. I re-read the novella last night and found its themes and messages just as powerful, moving and relevant as they must have been seven decades ago.
George Orwell was – and still is - one of Great Britain’s most famous writers and it was Animal Farm, and the dystopian nightmare Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) which first brought him worldwide respect. Animal Farm is set in a farmyard where the animals decide to seize the farmer's land and create a co-operative that reaps the benefits of their combined labours. However, some animals see a bigger share of the rewards than others, and the animals start to question their supposed utopia. Little by little, the rules begin to mysteriously change, and the pigs seem to gain power little by little, making the animals question what society they were striving for in the first place and whether their new-found freedom is as liberating as they might have hoped.
Animal Farm is one of the greatest socio-political works of all time but there is no need for the reader to pick-up on - or understand - any of the allusions to Lenin, Marx, Trotsky or Stalin as the story can be enjoyed as the simple, moving and enlightening parable it essentially is, a story that clearly shows humankind at its best and very worst. For me, it highlights the demons within every human – jealousy, greed, laziness and cruelty born of fear.
The parable successfully shows how the dream that communism in theory could be so easily turns into the nightmare that totalitarianism again and again has proven to be. I have always found anthropomorphism within the animal kingdom to provide an excellent framework within on which to build very serious themes – William Horwood’s Duncton Wood deals with religious intolerance, Watership Down deals with the never-ending struggle between tyranny and freedom. And for some reason, a loyal horse betrayed can become one of the most tragic and sympathetic figures in literature.
Animal Farm is moving, bitter and a warning from history – one of which will of course be ignored, for that is what humans excel at, repeating the errors and misjudgements of the past. It will only take 2-3 hours to read from cover to cover and as I believe it can now be sourced legitimately for free from sources like Project Gutenberg it is a book that anyone could and should read.
This Animal Farm book review was written by Floresiensis
Have you read Animal Farm?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Animal Farm reader reviews
Samip from Nepal
This book is the exact reflection of the political system throughout the world. This is what the politics really is..... all about obtaining power. Mostly in context of the developing country like ours this is the case. We ignorant people are easily deceived by the sweet talks of the politicians. By listening to them we believe that maybe this time actual progress might take place, maybe this time the people might actually be benefited but no ..... each time they back off from their promises and we feel like jokers for actually believing them . All they care for is power. All they want is personal benefit. They have no concern for public interest. For power they can do anything. Walking over the few corpses and injuries will also not matter to them and this book shows it.
Mupela from Zambia
I honestly think he wrote into the future meaning our world today we are being sweet talked into believing the false ideas set by many leaders his book is an eye opener
Elisa White from US
The book Animal Farm an engaging and educational must read. I thought it was very interesting how he portrayed the the cycle of revolution turning into tyranny. He describes how easily good intentions can be subverted into tyranny. This book indirectly describes communism and the government and how you can never make everyone happy. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. Orwell's writing is pessimistic and visual. I recommend this book.
Tavish from India
Sweta from India
The best book I have ever read.
Karim from Ireland
Its a really good book. It is a perfect book for a class to read together. When I read it it was amazing.
Suranjith from Sri Lanka
Anon from UK
Scary in view of the situation we find ourselves in now
Kabiito from Uganda
Animal farm is a book recommended for everyone at school and in society because it is a true reflection(The absolutism of power, greed, subjugation, intimidation and the simplicity of the masses) of what actually happens in the socio_political spheres of life.
Harri from UK
Good book for teens not so much for younger children.
Adam from England
It is very confusing as a child to read and hard to read in the deadline for kids doing the curricular activities :(
Isba from Pakistan
The best piece of literature.
RaphaŽl from France
A brilliant and timeless analyse of the mechanics of bureaucracy, ultimate betrayal of the hopes of the people. Let's pray it remains in the curriculum, for this story talks about power and control in general, not only in a communist system. The worst we could do against this book is to keep on saying "it is only about totalitarianism and the history of the USSR"... Not only, not only.
8.7/10 from 14 reviews
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
Fiver could sense danger. Something terrible was going to happen to the warren - he felt sure of it. So did his brother Hazel, for Fiver's sixth sense was never wrong. ...
He was a stringy mongrel, wandering the streets of the city, driven by a ravenous hunger and hunting a quarry he could not define. But he was something more. Somewhere in t...
Diana Wynne Jones
A powerful being fights for his life within the body of a humble, earthbound puppy. Sirius, immortal Lord of the Dog Star and infamous for his quick temper, cannot believe ...
Joan D Vinge
Captain Etienne Navarre is a man on whose shoulders lie a cruel curse. Punished for loving each other, Navarre must become a wolf by night whilst his lover, Lady Isabeau, t...
Rosemary Van Deuren
Blood versus fear. Folklore versus mysticism. Animal versus man. In the world of the rabbits, she is hailed as a saviour. In the world of men, a holy man wants her dead. Sh...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
Paris was supposed to save Hallie. Now... well, let’s just say Paris has other ideas. There’s a strange woman called The Chronometrist who will not leave her alone. Garbled warnings from bizarre creatures keep her up at night. And there’s a time portal in the keg room of the bar where she works. Soon, Hallie is tumbling through...
A corrupted city. A dark dream of power. Luke is a prisoner, condemned for a murder he didn’t commit. Abi is a fugitive, desperate to free him before magic breaks his...
The Fifth Empire of Man
Rob J Hayes
The Pirate Isles are united under Drake Morrass’ flag, but the war has only just begun. There’s still a long way to go before he’s able to call himself Ki...
Ian C Esslemont
After the disappointments of Li Heng, Dancer and Kellanved wash up on a small insignificant island named Malaz. Immediately, of course, Kellanved plans to take it over. To ...
Age of Swords
Michael J Sullivan
Raithe, the God Killer, may have started the rebellion by killing a Fhrey, but long-standing enmities dividing the Rhunes make it all but impossible to unite against the co...
A Time of Dread
The Ben-Elim, a race of warrior angels, once vanquished a mighty demon horde. Now they rule the Banished lands. But their dominion is brutally enforced and their ancient en...
The Last Dog on Earth
Adrian J Walker
Every dog has its day... And for Lineker, a happy go lucky mongrel from Peckham, the day the world ends is his: finally a chance to prove to his owner just how loyal he can...