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Nineteen Eighty-Four (Penguin Modern Classics)
Format: Mass Market Paperback|Change
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on 24 August 2017
This book gets more chilling each time I read it. Dashcams so we can report each others misdemeanours, erasing history, constant surveillance... it's all coming true...I recommend you follow it up with something light and fluffy.
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on 27 May 2018
So much to learn from this book. Prompted to leave a rating when I haven't finished it yet, however I can say that so far I'm blown away by the detail applied in prophetically describing the world as some totalitarian dungeon. And the effects of specious propaganda and the deletion of language on the population has been expressed through a remarkable understanding of social dynamics, revealing the sanctimonious, unctuous actuality of certain politicians, corporate big shots and liberals today.
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on 19 June 2015
A classic originally written in the 1940s with a futuristic outlook on government control and Big Brother.
Orwell imagined the events in his book to happen by 1984 and, whilst we still haven't reached that level of Big Brother just yet, it's not too hard to imagine it happening soon. The story of Winston Smith is brilliantly told, but it is the middle part of the book that I absolutely adored. A book within a book, it described, outlined and brilliantly explained numerous paradoxes and conflicting statements, such as "War Is Peace", that will have you questioning your own views and opinions.
Overall, a good story with deep meaning.
3 people found this helpful
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VINE VOICEon 28 March 2011
A dystopian society set in the future (well, technically the past, but it was the future when it was written, obviously) where Big Brother watches and controls everything you do etc, I'm pretty sure the majority of people know what 1984 is about.

I found the first half of the book, where the relationship between Julia and Winston begins, slightly contrived. I wasn't believing that in the society that Orwell has created, that such a relationship could've existed. Especially numerous relationships like this that one person could've had without being caught. But, I guess that the whole relationship was merely figurative and not literal. They didn't actually love each other, it was a coming together through common ideals, it was their small way of rebelling against the system.. so I guess it doesn't really matter that it was somewhat contrived. Also, they appeared far too naive when first meeting O'Brien.

That said, I really enjoyed reading this and the second part of the book and onwards in particular was excellent. I only wish that there was more of Goldstein's book to read, as that was fascinating. And the conversations between O'Brien and Winston were also exceptionally crafted, although after reading Darkness At Noon, I can't help feeling that perhaps it was a little more than just inspired by Arthur Koestler's book. Still enjoyed it, though. The bit about the party breaking you down both physically and mentally, and then rebuilding you, was chilling. As was the "if you want an image of the future, imagine a human face being repeatedly stomped on, for ever" bit.

Just to go back to my point about Koestler's Darkness At Noon seemingly being quite influential on 1984, so was a lot of We by Yevgeny Zamyatin. Especially for the first part of 1984, anyway. I don't think 1984 particularly eclipsed either of those books, but it was still brilliant in its own way and one of the best books I have ever read.
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on 9 July 2015
This classic depiction of a dystopian future (or an alternate dystopian timeline seeing as this book is now set just over three decades ago), is an undeniable masterpiece. However, it isn't necessarily a very good story.
The political ideas in this book are astounding, thought-provoking and completely horrifying, and in terms of this 1984 is a flawless piece of writing, but in terms of the actual narrative, this novel can feel quite stale and lacks progression.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as the protagonist is simply a plot-device used to explore Orwell’s political ideas, which in themselves are interesting enough to keep the book enjoyable (and i use "enjoyable" for want of a better word, because this books can be pretty disturbing in places). But if it’s a strong story you’re after, this might not be the book for you.
It is one of the most depressing books ever written. Unlike other dystopias 1984 is completely devoid of any sense of hope or progression to a better society. Much like the main character, you will feel trapped in a bleak world that is sure to leave you emotionally dead by the time you read the final sentence.
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on 8 June 2012
This novel by George Orwell describes how the world is ruled by three superpowers and is centered in what was called the United Kingdom before the revolution.
The old United Kingdom is now controlled and led by big brother in 1984 this is not one person but the inner party. every one must believe in the doctrines of that party to disbelieve is punishable by death, big brother watches you everywhere using TV monitors which cannot be turned off these monitors are even in the home, they watch for signs of dissidence even body language is scrutinised.
The authority's even look for thought crime, where thoughts against the inner party can be punished severely.
I enjoyed the book but some parts I felt were a little hard to swallow just a little to far fetched.
Its also interesting that many of the passages bore a direct relationship to the authors other famous book the Animal Farm I would recommend you read the farm first.
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on 21 August 2017
This is one of those books that you hear people say 'You should read at least once in your life'
And I would say it's true. I did however find it quite hard to get into at first, But I kept reading and I'm glad I did. There are reasons this book has been banned on and off since its publication. It's haunting, eerie and very profound and it will leave you questioning the type of world we live in.... or could possibly live in.
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on 16 June 2018
Suddenly realised that I had never read this book, the origin of so many of our current phrases. What a mindblow (to use ambivalent Oldspeak) to find how true it is to much of our everyday lives. Even typing this on a Kindle, the words it expects me to use are suggested. Is it coincidence that when I tried to key "oldspeak" the machine instantly changed it to either Kindle or my own name?!
Now here we are in the Ingsoc of Brexit, and my representative at Westminster is a good example of a doubleplusgood duckspeaker for the Party .....
CAN they get inside my head?
I am trying hard not to think of my worst fear. But perhaps I'm already in it.
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on 8 June 2013
I've just finished reading this book and felt compelled to write a review for anybody who might be sitting on the fence.
As the title suggests, this piece is truly astounding. It's both a brilliant book as well as being incredibly insightful. It manages to demonstrate the inner workings of a totalitarian state with the types of technology we have today and really opened my eyes as to the sorts of tactics that can be employed in these scenarios. Not only this but it managed to teach me about quite a few concepts that otherwise would have remained a mystery. Although this book can be slightly daunting in of the lexical complexity that is often utilised by this book, I found it a really useful way for myself to gain a deeper grasp of the English language which I am really grateful for.
Overall this book pretty much has the whole package. It has a brilliant story and teaches you a fair bit about governmental structure, which is far more interesting than it sounds. I can't recommend this book enough, just buy it and throw yourself into this awesome story.
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on 14 July 2016
I bought this for my son, as he is trying to get through a few classic books. I can remember it from reading it at school and it is a brilliant book, one we should all have on our shelf. my son loves reading and is very keen to start it.
this was my second attempt at buying it, I bought the Spanish version by mistake to begin with, but luckily we have a Spanish friend who can read that, haha.
a classic story.
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