Book Review: Animal Farm


         Orwell keeps scaring me and yet I still keep coming back. Hey, I  always was that girl up for a good scare. Usually, they'd come from y'know monsters and not very real and very likely scenarios told through a bunch of power hungry pigs.

This is at least one of the less scary covers.
                  In case you're not familiar with the premise: 
         A farm is taken over by its overworked, mistreated animals. With flaming idealism and stirring slogans, they set out to create a paradise of progress, justice, and equality. Thus the stage is set for one of the most telling satiric fables ever penned –a razor-edged fairy tale for grown-ups that records the evolution from revolution against tyranny to a totalitarianism just as terrible.
         When Animal Farm was first published, Stalinist Russia was seen as its target. Today it is devastatingly clear that wherever and whenever freedom is attacked, under whatever banner, the cutting clarity and savage comedy of George Orwell’s masterpiece have a meaning and message still ferociously fresh.

George Orwell
             I just adore Orwell's writing. I know I said this to death in my video and in my 1984 review but he never ceases to amaze me by his normalcy. His flowing pace just takes you from the first word. Orwell's ability to highlight and showcase complex issues such as the rise of fascism and USSR-style of communism in such finite detail with only about 150 pages is some type of sorcery, I swear. I spent an enormous amount of time in the video of this review praising Orwell so if you'd like to hear more about that, you can click that link or scroll to the bottom of the post to watch me ramble.
             Like I stated, the story's pacing canon-shot us into the plot from the first word, which was utterly appreciated. It's mentioned over and over again in the advertising for this book that this is a fairytale aimed at adults and if you're a fan of original fairytales you know they don't pussyfoot around getting straight to the action. The concept of telling such a harsh and very real story in such a way really shows how far and little we've come. Not to sound insulting to Orwell, who's a master genius, just that in mythology and folklore we've always done this.
            In high school, my senior project was on why we tell stories and how that affects how we tell/sell stories in the modern age. During my project as I researched the history of storytelling and publishing, I was also taking a mythology and folklore elective that saved my butt but also was one of my favorite subjects in school. Due to the fact of how simple our ancestors but their complex thoughts. How they interpreted their gods and the actions of the world. How they told the falling and rising of empires and kingdoms. How they kept their children safe by telling them grotesque horror stories right before bed so that they wouldn't leave the house.
           This is what I mean when I say how far and little we've come. It's really beautiful that in our modern age we have a story this simple putting out these complex government regiments and rules that brought down nations and sent the world into war. However, instead of peering into a history book and facing the harsh realities of our nearest ancestors had to face and the ramifications we still face to this day, we're told this story through animals.
           All of that being said, I think this is why the book was such an easy read for me during this weird reading slump I've found myself in as of late. Being the history enthusiast that I am, I knew from right off the bat where the story was going yet I was still encaptivated and devoured the book within just about a day. It was pretty early on that I suspected Napolean but I don't think that's really a good pig to stake my pride in as he's literally the villain/antagonist of the story so that's kind of the point of him, but hey! I did call it by page 26!
Why does this sound so familiar?
          Like with 1984 I found myself in a morose state of being able to identify with this story so clearly. The mantra of  "Two feet bad, four feet good." changing to "Four feet good, two feet better" (I think that's how it went) along with the changing of the barn wall rules fell way too close to home. Nowadays that's every day's news cycle where nothing is everything and everything nothing. The Wonderland of our time has begun and honestly, I didn't ask for. I don't want to be able to relate to dystopia and depictions of governments taking advantage of their power over their people. I always want to empathize with those causes but I never wanted to understand fully to how it begins.
          Unfortunately,  I feel as if we're halfway through the downward spiral that took the non-pigs in Animal Farm down. Before 2016 it felt as if we were climbing up and out of that spiral of oppression and lack of progress that America loves to hold on to for dear life because God forbid we change. That we were finally reaching a point of fully communicating our grievances. That action was being taken to help right those wrongs that have plagued every generation of this country. Which will continue to do so unless we look our past in the face and understand how it's been engraved into almost all aspects of our society. That it's not just in the past because the past's consequences were never addressed and were never righted.
          However, now, in June 2018, it rather feels were just spinning faster and faster down that spiral and embracing all our atrocities with open arms and well done's rather than condemning them and becoming a better nation for everyone, not just a select few. I feel we're just at the point of being fully under Napolean's rule in Animal Farm where it's almost too late to turn back and see what normalcy used to be. Then again, I don't think it's ever too late for anything, not really.  As long as there are Benjamin's out there who finally wake and see what it is that's really happened and are willing to do something about it, there's hope. They'll be a lot of hurt and fear but there's always a chance for better things to come. To make better things come.
         Gee, Orwell always brings out The Greatest Dictator speech in me. Maybe that's why 70 years later he's still inspiring others.


Favorite Quotes:

              "...But he was still a majestic looking pig."- pg 4, just change the pronoun to she and there's my epithet.
             "None of you have seen a dead donkey."-pg 30,  Well, hot DAMN Benjamin that came out of nowhere and fast! I'm scared and now I have to think about dead donkeys and that's just making me sad ☹.

Animal FarmAnimal Farm by George Orwell
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First thought: I'm speechless!
Second thought: I'm completely amazed, once again, by the talents of George Orwell, but GAH! He deserves all the praise he still gets for his works! His ability to tell such complex issues through just a simple and easy to read story is astounding.
Third thought: I highly recommend this book though it's very easy and terrifying when you start related to just about every chapter. 10/10 all the gold stars.
Fourth thought: My secret hope is that all the animals eventually just said "Lol bye porkers," and left, but that probably didn't happen :'(

View all my reviews

         If you haven't read Animal Farm go on over to Goodreads to find your copy!

Until Next Time,


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