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Island [Kindle Edition]

Aldous Huxley , David Bradshaw
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £9.99
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Book Description


For over a hundred years the Pacific island of Pala has been the scene of a unique experiment in civilisation. Its inhabitants live in a society where western science has been brought together with eastern philosophy and humanism to create a paradise on earth. When cynical journalist, Will Farnaby, arrives to search for information about potential oil reserves on Pala, he quickly falls in love with the way of life on the island. Soon the need to complete his mission becomes an intolerable burden. In counterpoint to Brave New World and Ape and Essence, in Island Huxley gives us his vision of utopia.

Product Description


'One of the truly great philosophical novels' -- The Times

The Times

'One of the truly great philosophical novels'

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 617 KB
  • Print Length: 372 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital; Re-issue edition (15 July 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0031RS72C
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #70,715 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Huxley's Philosophy is Perennial 15 Mar. 2008
By A Kant
This is the antithesis to Brave New World and a deeper exploration of the naturalistic vision that Huxley left us with, at the climax of his stunning novel 30 years earlier. It is a thing of beauty. I doubt anyone could read this book wihtout feeling a little loathing at technological and industrial marvels we are privileged with. You will feel compelled to set aside some time for the simple things in life and forget about the ones that involve money, without feeling guilty.

It seems incredible that Brave new world is nearly 80 years old and Island, born with the Hippy era, almost 50. To me, these works ring truer today than any other utopian works. It is Huxley's grasp of the human psyche that makes us believe such societies could endure. He shows us not how we could be forced to exist within them them, but whatever your political stance, why you might be happier if you did so. Despite his failing eyesight, Huxley saw a lot of things coming and wrote his books HD-ready!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Island - Do not hesitate, read it!! 15 Oct. 2009
I was assigned this novel to read for University, as part of a module based on 1960s literature.
The book was amazing; although it's not Huxley's most famous novel, it doesn't mean that it's not wonderfully written! He is an awesome author!
The novel is about a man who works for an oil-company and has been sent from Britain to persuade the peoples of an isolated island that they should allow this corporation to use their oil. When the protagonist (I forget his name) arrives on the island he finds that they are living a 'strange' utopian existence; initially he mocks their way of life, but ultimately he realises that it is capitalism that is flawed and not the communism-based lifestyle the people of Pala favour.
By the time you have finished reading this novel, you will know a lot more about Buddhism and Communism! I REALLY enjoyed this text, which is why I have taken the trouble to write this review!
I don't want to spoil the ending but I will say that it isn't your conventional happy ending, but you won't want it any other way!! :)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fresh fresh fresh... 3 Jun. 1999
By A Customer
For me, the most appealing feature of this work was the way Huxley combines great society-changes with personal development and joy. Too often people want to make the world better by being a pure and holy human being, which is off course impossible. In Huxleys Utopia society is completely adjusted to the best of human nature, but it's still human nature. This is what makes the whole so realistic and valuable. The obvious question now is off course: Why don't we put his ideas into action? In answering this I must agree with another reviewer, who poses that people in Pala are too earnest, too occupied with their happiness. Maybe Huxley forgot the part of human nature we call 'laziness'. Another possibility is that we're simply too stupid a race to put such obvious guidelines to happiness beside us. When i walk down a library or book shop i'm always having difficulties finding books that describe something positive. It seems we are animals that enjoy suffering as well as complaining about it. Untill we can put this drive for self-pity and misery aside, we're not ready for Pala. I can't help but wondering if we will ever be... .
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44 of 47 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
I read 1984 and brave new world, and as I am sure was the case for most people, my perspectives on society, science, and progress were altered, irreversably, or so I thought. These great dystopian novels coloured and darkened my perception of our modern landscape of cctv, GM foods and shrink wrapped pre-proccessed art. Then I read Island and had my optimism reaffirmed. Island shows us that a society based on anarchist principles could conceivably be a better one than our own, without reading like psuedo philosophical new age toss. Huxley is beautifully persuesive in his writing, and manages seamlessly, to provide coherrent, intellegent arguments without ever fracturing the dramatic and engrossing narrative. I think everyone will connect with the main character's periodic visions of his fellow men as maggots, and even the seemingly pessimistic ending leaves you hopeful.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THIS REVIEW DOES NOT GIVE AWAY PLOTS!! 23 July 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Island can be read in four ways; as a poor novel, a thread-bare utopian manifesto, a (borderline)pseudo-intellectual essay on humanity or (as I did) a thought provoking philosophical novel. Much like HG wells - 'A Modern Utopia', Island takes you on a journey through a utopia and allows you to contemplate on its merits.

I do not know if Huxley was trying to convince me of this Utopia's ideals or not. I naturally read it as a invitation to question everything. If you approach reading the book in this manner, you will finish Island much more enlightened than you started.

It does have a plot and several characters, that said I don't believe Huxley is a great story teller and so, I would warn you away if you are looking for a fully formed, fleshed out novel. However, in my opinon this does not take away from the book. If you are looking for escapsim, stick to a thriller. This book won't make you look out the window, it will make you look in the mirror.

Island is the philosophical sister to the sociological Brave New world, despite sharing some qualities, Island is not about 'Them', it is about 'You'.

As thought provoking as anything I've read from Plato all the way to Orwell.

One of the most important books I've ever read.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Some interesting ideas
Read this novel years ago and still find it interesting.
Published 6 days ago by Linda Deans
5.0 out of 5 stars A Huxley classic
Since it was recommended by a colleague that I read Brave New World, I'm a big Huxley fan now and this is a must to read.
Published 2 months ago by Samuel Wittwer
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice story. Well written.
Bought on recommendation. Good story.
Published 3 months ago by Mary M
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 4 months ago by A.Bertolini
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent book..... Brave new world was my fab but this is class ahead of his time .....
Published 4 months ago by mtj shanagher
5.0 out of 5 stars I bought this as a present for my son, ...
I bought this as a present for my son, who wanted it, so can't really comment on it myself, but it was well received by him.
Published 4 months ago by G
5.0 out of 5 stars Reality and hope collide
Everyone - and that includes every young child who has not yet been through the education system - should read this.
Published 4 months ago by Bennettskaya
4.0 out of 5 stars A cult novel
Beautifully written treatise on social experiments. Makes a lot of sense without being too idealistic. Plot is thin but takes the form of several dialogues. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Huxley's 2nd best book after Brave new world
Published 5 months ago by Spod
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
xmas present
Published 5 months ago by andy powell
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