I’m not going to lie, I was a little scared to read this haunting tale. From just reading the back synopsis of the book, I wasn’t even sure that I was going to like it.
Sometimes, I really love it when I’m wrong. Yes, this book is a bit crazy and haunting, but it’s one of my new favorite novels. I love the way Orwell writes, his cadence, the way he keeps me captivated and wanting to turn pages, the words he chooses. It’s probably one of first books to do this outside of Harry Potter and Chronicles of Narnia.
Here’s some great quotes:
Now that he had recognized himself as a dead man it became important to stay alive as long as possible.
The heresy of heresies was common sense. And what was terrifying was not that they would kill you for thinking otherwise, but that they might be right.
No emotion was pure, because everything was mixed up with fear and hatred.
History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.
The terrible thing that the party had done was to persuade you that mere impulses, mere feelings were of no account, while at the same time robbing you of all power over the material world.
They can’t get inside you. If you can feel that staying human is worthwhile, even when it can’t have any result whatever, you’ve beaten them.
There Brotherhood cannot be wiped out because it is not an organization in the ordinary sense. Nothing holds it together except an idea which is indestructible.
The best books, he perceived, are those that tell you what you already know already.
There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad.
“She’s beautiful,” he murmured. “She’s a meter across the hips easily,” said Julia “That is her style of beauty,” said Winston.
The birds sang, the proles sang, the Party did not sing. All round the world, in London and New York, in Africa and Brazil and in the mysterious, forbidden lands beyond the frontiers, in the streets of Paris and Berlin, in the villages of the endless Russian plain, in the bazaars of China and Japan – everywhere stood the same solid unconquerable figure, made monstrous by work and childbearing toiling from birth to death and still singing.
Perhaps one did not want to be loved so much as to be understood.
And yet he knew, he knew, that he was in the right. The belief that nothing exists outside your own mind – surely there must be some way of demonstrating that it was false.
Stupidity was as necessary as intelligence, and as difficult to attain.
To die hating them, that was freedom.
It’s just a great novel. I am looking forward to reading more Orwell.