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Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Lord of the Flies (1954)

by William Golding

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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28,739None31 (3.75)1 / 687
1001 (117) 1001 books (112) 20th century (278) adventure (260) allegory (131) boys (149) British (232) British literature (230) children (157) classic (1,027) Classic Literature (89) classics (678) coming of age (105) dystopia (477) English (116) English literature (195) fiction (2,942) human nature (125) island (157) literature (512) Nobel Prize (91) novel (456) own (100) read (466) school (97) society (99) survival (400) to-read (165) YA (97) young adult (229)
1950s (9)
1960s (152)
Unread books (1,034)
  1. 143
    Battle Royale by Koushun Takami (JGKC, Panairjdde)
    Panairjdde: Two books that explore the survival instinct of people, even at youg age, as fueled by fear and lust for violence
  2. 136
    The Giver by Lois Lowry (FFortuna)
  3. 50
    High-Rise by J. G. Ballard (bertilak)
    bertilak: Two books about 'civilized' people becoming tribal and violent. However, Ballard is a disinterested diagnostician and Golding is a moralist.
  4. 41
    A High Wind in Jamaica by Richard Hughes (pitjrw)
    pitjrw: Similar outlook on youth but a lot funnier and great description of a hurricane that plays the same role as the nuclear holacaust in Lord.
  5. 30
    Friday and Robinson: life on Esperanza Island by Michel Tournier (yokai)
  6. 63
    The Cement Garden by Ian McEwan (KayCliff)
  7. 20
    Nip the Buds, Shoot the Kids by Kenzaburō Ōe (JuliaMaria)
    JuliaMaria: Kinder auf sich allein gestellt - was sagt es über die Gesellschaft aus?
  8. 20
    Animal Farm by George Orwell (literarybuff)
    literarybuff: Both of these books are allegories that make the reader question whether or not there really are differences between animal nature and human nature.
  9. 64
    The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks (villanova)
  10. 20
    The Only Ones by Aaron Starmer (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: A world without adults with some differences and similarities.
  11. 31
    Under the Dome by Stephen King (sturlington)
    sturlington: Under the Dome is an adult version of Lord of the Flies.
  12. 10
    Tunnel in the Sky by Robert A. Heinlein (sandstone78)
    sandstone78: A more optimistic view of young people in a society of their own- I read this on my own from the school library a few years before Lord of the Flies was required reading, and it seemed much more reasonable to me.
  13. 32
    The Beach by Alex Garland (booklove2, mcenroeucsb)
    booklove2: The Beach is like Lord of the Flies for adults, starring adults.
  14. 21
    Robinson Crusoe [Norton Critical Edition] by Daniel Defoe (one-horse.library)
  15. 11
    Savages by Shirley Conran (shesinplainview)
  16. 11
    After the Rain by John Bowen (edwinbcn)
  17. 11
    The Drifting Classroom, Vol. 1 by Kazuo Umezu (scotchpenicillin)
    scotchpenicillin: Comment des enfants confontés à une situation extraordinaire re-construisent un semblant de société...
  18. 00
    I'm the King of the Castle by Susan Hill (KayCliff)
  19. 00
    Orphan Island by Rose Macaulay (KayCliff)
  20. 12
    Nothing by Janne Teller (meggyweg, meggyweg)

(see all 27 recommendations)


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English (392)  Italian (7)  Dutch (6)  Finnish (6)  French (6)  Spanish (4)  German (3)  Swedish (1)  Hebrew (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (427)
Showing 1-5 of 392 (next | show all)
Great introduction by Stephen King ( )
  ClubStephenKing | Apr 11, 2014 |
Contains an exclusive introduction by Stephen King ! ( )
  ClubStephenKing | Apr 11, 2014 |
This one was an interesting look at a group of boys who survived what I can only presume was a plane crash on a remote island somewhere in the Pacific during what I believe was WW2 time frame. We don't know exactly how long they were marooned, but they develop a tiered society by electing Ralph the chief, & Jack the leader of the hunters. Over time, they devolve into savagery, closer to the animal state than the human one. The society breaks up when Ralph & Jack come to blows, & Jack starts his own tribe on the opposite end of the island. Ralph becomes an outcast after Piggy's death & Simon's, when Jack & the tribe actually hunt Ralph! It's a story chock full of all kinds of symbolism & metaphors. It's pretty stark, & pretty sad, but it was interesting. ( )
  Lisa.Johnson.James | Apr 11, 2014 |
Lord of the Flies by William Golding is an excellent classic that is still read by kids and adults of all ages. William Golding attempted to describe what human nature is like and at the end, everyone is evil at the end. This book is very interesting because the boys who are from England which symbolizes that they are all prim and proper end up becoming savages at the end no matter what. One of the more interesting things I would say is that the young innocent chorus boys in the beginning book would produce the antagonist in this book. The one boy we pity greatly on is a boy we actually don't learn the name of but is referred to as Piggy in the book which I would think is very hurtful. He also dies in a horrific way at the end which just adds to the pity as he would be the closest to a pacifist this book has. The littlest things in this book actually stand for or symbolize much greater things and if you pay attention, you can catch most of them. Even the pig skull on the stick stands for the "enemy" that all the boys are scared of in the story and it kind of represents what the boys have come to after just a couple of days. Their carelessness also causes the death of young children near the beginning of the book which sadly none of the boys have much of a reaction to. One name you will never forget after reading this book is Simon who may be considered timid but he is also wise and may be considered prophetic. He is the only other boy except Piggy who understands who the real beast is. Later looking at the pig skull causes him to hallucinate and at the end causes his demise because sadly all the other boys end up killing him. After reading all of this you would expect all of these boys to die out shortly but somehow they are saved in the nick of time. To find out how, you should read this wonderful classic.
  TomasJefferson | Apr 10, 2014 |
A classic. ( )
  JK135 | Apr 9, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 392 (next | show all)
There is no blinking the fact that this English schoolmaster turned novelist understands growing boys to the heart; one must go back to"High Wind in Jamaica" to find a comparable tour de force. The uneasy conviction persists that he despises the child who is father to the man-and the man as well. Homo sapiens needs all the friends he can find these days, in and out of novels.
added by Shortride | editThe New York Times, William du Bois (pay site) (Oct 21, 1955)
"Lord of the Flies" is an allegory on human society today, the novel's primary implication being that what we have come to call civilization is, at best, skin deep. With undertones of "1984" and "High Wind in Jamaica," this brilliant work is a frightening parody on man's return (in a few weeks) to that state of darkness from which it took him thousands of years to return. Fully to succeed, a fantasy must approach very close to reality. "Lord of the Flies" does. It must also be superbly written. It is.
added by Shortride | editThe New York Times Book Review, James Stern (pay site) (Oct 23, 1954)

» Add other authors (42 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
William Goldingprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Déry, TiborTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Epstein, E. L.Afterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jessurun d'Oliveira, H.U.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Perkki, JuhanaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For my mother and father
First words
The boy with fair hair lowered himself down the last few feet of rock and began to pick his way toward the lagoon.
His voice rose under the black smoke before the burning wreckage of the island; and infected by that emotion, the other little boys began to shake and sob too. And in the middle of them, with filthy body, matted hair, and unwiped nose, Ralph wept for the end of innocence, the darkness of man's heart, and the fall through the air of the true, wise friend called Piggy.
Maybe there is a beast - maybe it's only us.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
When Lord of the Flies appeared in 1954 it received unprecedented reviews for a first novel. Critics used such phrases as "beautifully written, tragic and provocative...vivid and enthralling...this beautiful and desperate book...completely convincing and often very frightening...its progress is magnificent...like a fragment of nightmare...a dizzy climax of terror...the terrible spell of this book..." E.M. Forster chose it as the Outstanding Novel of the Year. Time and Tide touched upon perhaps the most important facet of this book when it said, "It is not only a first-rate adventure story but a parable of our times," and articles on this and subsequent Golding novels have stressed these twin aspects of Golding: a consummate control of the novel form, and a superb all-encompassing vision of reality which communicates itself with a power reminiscent of Conrad.
Haiku summary
Diverging lenses
To start a fire? Golding knew
Nothing of optics.

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0399501487, Mass Market Paperback)

William Golding's classic tale about a group of English schoolboys who are plane-wrecked on a deserted island is just as chilling and relevant today as when it was first published in 1954. At first, the stranded boys cooperate, attempting to gather food, make shelters, and maintain signal fires. Overseeing their efforts are Ralph, "the boy with fair hair," and Piggy, Ralph's chubby, wisdom-dispensing sidekick whose thick spectacles come in handy for lighting fires. Although Ralph tries to impose order and delegate responsibility, there are many in their number who would rather swim, play, or hunt the island's wild pig population. Soon Ralph's rules are being ignored or challenged outright. His fiercest antagonist is Jack, the redheaded leader of the pig hunters, who manages to lure away many of the boys to join his band of painted savages. The situation deteriorates as the trappings of civilization continue to fall away, until Ralph discovers that instead of being hunters, he and Piggy have become the hunted: "He forgot his words, his hunger and thirst, and became fear; hopeless fear on flying feet." Golding's gripping novel explores the boundary between human reason and animal instinct, all on the brutal playing field of adolescent competition. --Jennifer Hubert

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:38:36 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

A fable of ship-wrecked children turning to primitive savagery that portrays the collapse of social order into chaos.

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