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Which Book To Read Next? (Theme: Dystopia)

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by BassGod, Apr 28, 2006.

  1. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    I'm very interested in the theme of dystopia, and dystopian society (and related topics). I know there are many novels based on the subject. Through the magic of Wikipedia, I've come up with a list of a few that sound interesting to me. Basically I wanna know your opinions on them, which ones are good, which ones to avoid, etc.

    The List:

    - A Clockwork Orange
    - Logan's Run
    - Player Piano
    - Brave New World
    - Animal Farm
    - Nineteen Eighty-Four
    - Fahrenheit 451
    - Anthem

    That's about it. The only books I've read that can be classified as dystopian are 'Lord of the Flies' (which I didn't like) and 'The Giver'. I didn't like the latter when I first read it (in grade seven) but looking back, it was actually quite a good book.

    Any thoughts/other reccomendations?


    P.S. As an interesting note, Rush's epic '2112' was what got me interested in the subject.
  2. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    Add to that list 'The Handmaid's Tale' by Margaret Atwood.

  3. From that list, I recommend A Clockwork Orange. Orwell's stuff and Brave New World are seminal works and well worth reading as well. The others I don't know, although I've heard great things of Margaret Atwood.
  4. Ericman197


    Feb 23, 2004
    Clockwork Orange and 1984 bro
  5. d8g3jdh

    d8g3jdh Guest

    Aug 9, 2005
    Clockwork Orange is the best on that list, followed by Brave New World, then 1984 and Animal Farm. I heard mixed reviews about Farenheit 451. Haven't heard of the rest.

    BUT, if you want a book that will challenge you like you've never been challenged before, a book that will leave your head spinning, a book that could be read 50 times and still miss some of the allegory and double meanings, a book that is probably the best book on the dystopian subject (at least as good as Clockwork Orange), then check out Riddley Walker by Russell Hoban. This book has so many layers that the amount of thinking and insight you can do is endless. Provided you're up for a challenge, I absolutely recommend it as #1.
  6. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    farenheit 451 is an easy read. It's not that long. I have not read Clockwork Orange, but I did like the movie. It would be worth a read.
  7. Visirale


    Mar 23, 2003
    I'd take Brave New World over 1984 any day of the week.
  8. Well, from those list, as others mentioned, a clockwork orange, brace new world, and 1984 would be important works, also, they each have a different dystopia,
    in brave new world technology has transformed society mostly
    in 1984 a fascist/communist(elements of both) totalitarian system has taken over the world, more politically and socially involved
    clockwork orange....can't remember:rolleyes: should pick upt that book again soon

    I kind of like the french book Malevil by robert merle too, it tells the story of a group of french who survive the impact of this huge atom bomb over france. This sounds canny, but the focus is on intragroup and intergroup(there are more survivors) relations, it is really well written and a gripping story, but well you know, it's in french and I don't know if it's translated.
    als animal farm is maybe a shorter and easier read, and is written very clearly
  9. Eric Cioe

    Eric Cioe

    Jun 4, 2001
    Missoula, MT
    I'll just weigh in on Anthem.

    Anthem is a wonderful book, but once you read it, you're tempted to turn into the main character. This is a problem with all of Ayn Rand's fiction - as soon as you read it, you think in your head, "why I can't I be like that?" When you read something else that is based on personal ethics, you'll go back to normal (hopefully). Otherwise, you'll probably go out and become a card-carrying member of The Objectivist Club. Yikes.

    Read Anthem - it is a great, great book. Three hours, tops. Hell, you could read that and Animal Farm in the same day.
  10. smperry

    smperry Administrator Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    Endorsing Artist: Martin Keith Guitars
  11. canopener


    Sep 15, 2003
    Isle of Lucy
    The Lottery
  12. Brave New World was a good book, as was Animal Farm. Ill be reading 1984 soon, as Ive heard that is a good book as well.
  13. d8g3jdh

    d8g3jdh Guest

    Aug 9, 2005
    I reiterate: Riddley Walker.
  14. Tom Crofts

    Tom Crofts

    Mar 15, 2001
    Watch metropolis too.
  15. smperry

    smperry Administrator Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    Endorsing Artist: Martin Keith Guitars
    It's crazy...the same guy wrote Bread and Jam for Frances.

  16. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    I looked, but alas it could not be found. My local Chapters was also out of A Clockwork Orange.

    So I bought Nineteen Eighty-Four. On a slightly unrelated note, I also bought The Divine Comedy, which should be a good read.

    I'll look for the above mentioned next time, and I'll probably end up buying Anthem too. So thanks for the help, but continue discussing. I'm really starting to like this whole "literature" thing. ;)

  17. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    Didn't see this... Three hours tops, eh? Are you a speed-reader? I'm pretty fast but I've never finished a novel in three hours. 'For Whom The Bell Tolls' took me three days!

    Nontheless, it shall be read.

  18. d8g3jdh

    d8g3jdh Guest

    Aug 9, 2005
    You might need to get Riddley of Amazon, it's kinda rare. As Marshall said, this was his first novel. Before that he wrote kids' books. Trust me, it';s worth the look though.

    You got the Divine Comedy? Wicked! I'm writing an essay on it, or the inferno anyways. It's pretty heavy. Good though. What translation did you get?
  19. Eric Cioe

    Eric Cioe

    Jun 4, 2001
    Missoula, MT
    Dude, Anthem is about 110 pages long. The book reads itself.

    As far as the Divine Comedy, I love Inferno. The others are good, but Inferno is something else. I ended up winning $1k from an essay I wrote about it (specifically, the concept of justice as far as it relates to the "eye for eye, tooth for tooth" conception in Exodus) while I was in high school. I took an Italian class here (University of Chicago) called Italian through Dante. We basically spent a quarter (10 weeks) translating the first canto.

    I forget the translator, but whoever did "Everyman's Library" version of it did a really good job.
  20. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    Cool. Actually, I might just buy Anthem and read it before I start the others. An appetizer of sorts.

    I can't wait to begin The Divine Comedy, as poetry interests me greatly. I mainly bought it for the Inferno section, but I will no doubt be reading the others. Actually, the version I bought contains Inferno, Purgatory, Paradise, as well as another work of Dante's, whose name I can't recall.


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