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Average Customer Review:
Number of Reviews:1201
5 of 70 people found the following review helpful:
Nice try George, May 13, 2004
1984 is a fictional novel by George Orwell. The book is a story of Orwell's prediction of the world in the future (1984). In this story, we are taken to a society that is governed by an oppressive force known as "The Party," and an intangable ruler known only as "Big Brother." The main character, Winston Smith, spends his time throughout the novel trying to overthrow The Party and Big Brother, while running from the "Thought Police," a justice department that monitors the thoughts of citizens of Oceana, the predicted future state of London, England. Winston fails in his attempts. He is captured, set up by people whom he believed to be on his side, and is later brainwashed into loving and following Big Brother. Great attitude George. I truly believe that Orwell's sole purpose for writing this novel was to encourage anarchy, and to convince his readers to be subordinate to authority. Though society and government are not perfect, they are not as evil and as oppressive as Orwell made them out to be. He creates a negative Utopia in hopes to make people hate their leaders and to disagree with any form of government. It is because of people like Orwell that our nation, as well as other nations, are so dramatically torn by the opinions of citizens towards their leaders, and their leader's decisions. Also, at the end of this novel, Orwell leaves readers with a sense of hopelessness, by allowing his main character to be manipulated, tortured, and brainwashed into following what Orwell inderectly refers to as government. Let's try to be a little more optomistic, and work on a happier ending, shall we?
4 of 56 people found the following review helpful:
Not as good as Harry Potter, says I, April 23, 2004
While cultural pundits try to convince you that some literature is better than other literature, the truth is that all art is relative to individial tastes. Thus, it doesn't make any sense to think that a novel like this one is really any better than say, Michael Crichton or Stephen King. Aesthetic standards can't be grounded. Thus, don't listen to anyone who tries to distinguish between "serious" works of literature like this one and allegedly "lesser" novels. The distinction is entirely illusory, because no novels are "better" than any others, and the concept of a "great novel" is an intellectual hoax. This book isn't as good as Harry Potter in MY opinion, and no one can refute me. Tastes are relative!
2 of 41 people found the following review helpful:
Nineteen Eighty Flub, November 20, 2003
I recently took up the hobby of reading "classics" instead of teenage dramas or mysterys. 1984 was second on my list. But now I'm left wondering why is this book a classic? This book was descriptively crude with its love affair and prostitute, redundant with its thoughts and routine, and overall dull. I admit that this book did have a good message and was thoroughly enforced from the beginning to end. However, thats all that happened. It was just thoughts of a sad man with perverse and suspicouis thoughts. The main character constantly dwelled on how horrible everything was and eventually how he was going to fight against it. But never did, unless you count having an affair and writing in a journal or buying an old paperweight. At times the story would pick up, and just as quickly as it picked up it drastically fell back into the continuous complaints of Winston. 1984 is well written. I guess, there were quantities of complex words tied in with a new language created within the book (Newsspeak). Keep your dictionary handy. The chararcters also lacks personality. They were so 2 deminsional. Overall it was impossibly hard to follow, and paragraphs could be skipped and you wouldnt miss a thing. Not to mention that tragic ending. No steps were made toward anything! It stops about were it left off except Winston loves BB and loves his torturor. This book was an overrated classic and a big fat FLUB!
0 of 50 people found the following review helpful:
This is the worst book i have ever read!!!!, September 29, 2003
Reviewer: Caitlyn (Atlanta, GA USA)
1984 is the worst book I have ever read. I would advise anyone who is thinking about reading this book to reconcider! George Orwell is not a bad writer, however, this book he does not do evry well on, as some of his others. Prehaps he was getting old and lost his touch. Animal Farm was okay, but 1984 was horrible. It took him forever, it seemed like, to get into the accual book. If someone were to take out all of the useless part of 1984, it would be half as long. Why would he wirte so much about nothing? I havent ever meet someone who could wirte such a boring book about the goverment. I have meet many people who have loved this book, but i dispised it. I am not at all intrested in the goverment. This may be part of the reason that I didnt like it. I would advise you not to read this book.
1 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
Slow, Boring, and Depressing, October 10, 2005
Reviewer: Deadguy (Peoria, IL)
I was depressed for a week after I finished completing this novel. The torture that the protagonist endures is just too much to digest. I can only be thankful that this terrifying vision hasn't come to fruition...yet.
2 of 68 people found the following review helpful:
DON'T READ THIS BOOK, September 23, 2003
Reviewer: Sheri (greensboro, north carolina)
i give this book one star i had to read it for class and i know it's suposed to be a "classic" but god itis awful. first of all its NOTHING like the future is probly going to turn out. second of all every one says the aurthor george orwell is so trippy and wierd but i think he's just trying to cover up for the fact that HE CAN'T WRITE. please george do us all a faver and stop writing books.
0 of 37 people found the following review helpful:
"classic" does NOT mean good!!!, December 12, 2002
Reviewer: "secrective" (Detroit, MI)
If you havent been forced to read this book while in school, or hadnt had a chance to grab it at the library, run while you can. 1984 might have been scary 100 years ago, but not now. If you like reading about old people think they are beating the system by saving a PAPERWEIGHT, then by all means... The book has multiple plot holes as well. Beware the "government runs the world unchallenged, but still needs to brainwash old people" hole. Read something else instead... ANYTHING ELSE!
1 of 54 people found the following review helpful:
BORRRIIIIING!, April 30, 2001
I read this book in 8th grade. It was fairly easy to read and was not too hard, but it was by far the most boring and pointless piece of literature that I have ever read in my 15 years of life. I MUCH would have rather read a Case Note! If you are considering purchasing this book, I thouroughly discourage it. If you MUST read something by George Orwell, read Animal Farm. It is a pretty good book...
2 of 26 people found the following review helpful:
Monotony, August 29, 2000
Attempting to read this book is worse than watching the grass grow. At least the grass will become something you enjoy. The title and plotline of the story intrigued me to read it. Don't get me wrong, if well-written, this storyline could be very interesting. But even after just ten pages, the only thought going through my mind was "When will this guy shut up and tell the story???" The plot comes in a distant second to the narrator's monotone, seemingly unending monologue. If I could withstand this, I believe I would have enjoyed it. But forgive me for not having that kind of patience for hundreds of pages.
2 of 45 people found the following review helpful:
Another book to ruin peoples minds!, April 12, 2000
This book only plays with our mind.
0 of 4 people found the following review helpful:
1984, March 24, 2000
Reviewer: Michael (Williamsville, New York)
1984 is a very creative and well written book, Winston Smith the main character who is an insignifacant member of the ruling party in London in the nation of Oceania. Everywhere he goes he is video taped by cameras of the so called "Big Brother" party. This books talks about Winston on how he thinks what the "Big Brother" does is unfair. I enjoyed reading this book, it was very creative and well written. It makes me appreciate what I have in life. I also woundn't like the situation that Winston is put by being watch all the time. I reccommend this book to people who are willing to sit threw some boring parts and who love science fiction. Overall it was a good book, but I don't think Iam ever going to want to read this book again.
5 of 36 people found the following review helpful:
Garbage and other phrases..., January 28, 2000
Reviewer: Bryan (Colorado Springs, CO United States)
Give me a break. The writing was lousy, the concepts and ideas were questionable...sorry, but one star is pushing this book. Orwell underestimated the human animal and its tenacity in the face of oppression...his complete and utter takeover of society w/ "Big Brother" just wouldn't last, even if it could happen. People have oral histories...ones you cannot erradicate...just ask various peoples around the world who survived oppression despite attempts at stopping their stories and changing their cultures. Let Orwell's work die as a curiosity...
0 of 18 people found the following review helpful:
The Most Boring Book I Ever Read, July 26, 2001
I think 1984 is not very interesting. The words are difficult. I had no clue what was really going on. It would be less boring if it was shorter and broken down so it would be easier to understand. You might like this book if you are interested in predicting the future and you can read lots of difficult words and know what they mean. Keep your dictionary close!
0 of 20 people found the following review helpful:
I think this book is horrible, October 27, 1999
I have never read a bigger piece of garbage in my entire life. For the people who read and enjoyed this book...GET A LIFE!
0 of 13 people found the following review helpful:
1984 is a classic that doesn't deserve to be, September 22, 1999
While regarded as a "classic" by some literary scholars, 1984 is devoid of nearly every element of classical literature. The fall of Communism has erased nearly every trace of relevance this book may once have had. Its warnings of the evils of totalitarianism were overly alarmist by even Cold War standards and are even more so today. The absence of strong, 3-D characters makes even a man vs. society theme seem sorely lacking in depth . The only redeeming quality of this book may lie in providing future readers with an McCarthyist view of the evils of communism from the standpoint of a conservative 50s faux intellectual. If you're looking for a deeper, better-written, and tremendously more entertaining book, try Orwell's Animal Farm. Even walking, talking farm animals seem realistic compared to 1984.
3 of 24 people found the following review helpful:
George, Stick to Non-Fiction, May 7, 2000
Reviewer: Dan (Syracuse, New York)
This is the second time I've been forced to read this book for aclass, and I have to ask, "What's the point?" Maybe if you live in a country that's a monarchy, this book's worth reading, but this is *America*, ok? The whole reason we live in a democracy is so that we the people don't have to worry about things like this. Brave New World played up the science fiction aspect of it's "futuristic" setting ,and I thought that book worked much better. Orwell's lecturing on politics was ok one time around ("Animal Farm"), but this book gets so bogged down in a million issues that just don't matter ("double-speak?" Who cares how people choose to talk-- we should be able to talk to each other however we want) and gets lost. If you want to read Orwell when he actual has something to say, try The Road to Wigan Pier, which acutally is enlightening, not this preachy homily of something that never happened. It's 2000. 1984 was a bad movie with Michael J. Fox.
2 of 13 people found the following review helpful:
Even after 3 reads, still a superficial book, July 12, 1999
"1984" is hailed as the greatest novel of all time. I disagree. Had this been written at a different time, it would have been hailed differently. The fact remains, however, that this was the Cold War and everyone hated Communism. Thus anything that was against it, no matter how false or trivial, was inflated beyond belief. This wasn't limited to 1984; it was present in the case of Solzhenitsyn. Solzhenitsyn wrote a well-written anti-Soviet novel, therefore Solzhenitsyn was hailed as a hero of democracy, even though his subsequent books were mediocre. I do not believe that 1984 is a travesty because it lacks action. I believe that this book is a travesty because it is false. People say that this novel had an exquisitely crafted plot which readers such as myself are too daft to comprehend. They may be right. However, Orwell did not craft this exquisite plot. It was gleaned from Zamyatin's _We_, for starters. Secondly, this was the topic of the day. _Everyone_ was writing about how bad and evil communism was. _Everyone_ was taking pain to diffuse the utopian philosophies of the previous century. The societies of 1984 and Brave New World are very similar. 1984 and Animal Farm are the same book with the names changed. As I stated originally, the characters of the two novels are identical. Napoleon is Big Brother, or perhaps O'Brien, Boxer is Winston, Snowball is Goldstein, Squealer is Mr. Charrington, etc. Orwell plagiarized himself, Zamyatin, and countless other authors who wrote about the exact same thing. Orwell was not meaning to denegrate the theory of communism, becuase he was not familiar with the theory of communism. He was meaning to denegrate Russia and socialism and show them exactly the way the West portrayed them. It makes no difference that he was at some point a member of the Communist Party. If you read Richard Wright's _Black Boy_, you will see several Americans who were in the American Communist Party, yet didn't know the ideals they claimed to represent. They were in it for the fun. Ditto George Orwell. People say that Orwell had to understand a theory that was developed in his own country. I say: pfft. Firstly, many middle-class Americans today believe that excerpts from the Declaration of Independence are Communist propaganda meant to subvert American minds in the Cold War. (You know, the parts that say "all men are created equal"?) Secondly, communism was not developed in England and Karl Marx did not have sole rights to it. The ideas behind it were conceived in the epoch of Enlightenment by French philosophers. I do not say Orwell is retaliating against anything. That implies he had something against it. I believe he was simply playing upon the mood of the day to please the public. Say what they want to hear and add some sex in there to make it interesting and it will sell. People view him as God's prophet; I view him as a boring, unoriginal one-hit wonder who wanted to make a buck rehashing much-talked-of, much-written-of themes.
1 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
The Political Paranoids' "Gospel of Orwell", March 7, 1999
Orwell is one of the most overrated novelists of this century. He's nothing more nor less than a second-rate hack who profiteered by preying on the worst fears of modern man. Today, his book is the modern bible of the paranoid disgruntled white male and other conspiracy nutcases. Yet another fairy tale, albeit a grown-up one, warns us to LOOK OUT for that proverbial boogy man--Big Brother, in this case, being the latest in a long line of aliases he goes under. Perhaps Orwell's Newspeak should include these additions: "Propaganda is Truth"; "Truth is Absolute"; "Freedom springs from Fear"; "Extremism is Virtue." This book has never made anyone stop to think, but, instead, to fear and hate one more faceless abstraction. Contemporary paranoia gets a much more powerful portrayal in the works of Thomas Pynchon, such as "The Crying of Lot 49." At least IT has the virtue of being well written.
6 of 16 people found the following review helpful:
This edition is an embarrassment, September 15, 2002
Reviewer: Johnny (Colorado United States)
First off, this review is in reference to this particular edition not the story 1984. George Orwell's 1984 is a genuine masterpiece and my mind is just to feeble to adequately comment on it. Read it immediately, just remember to carefully avoid anything not written by Orwell. Okay, this edition starts with an About the Author blurd. It gives the usual. It goes on to say Orwell "hated totalitarianism" then "Orwell considered himself a socialist" and as an afterthought adds "although he was critical of communism." Critical? Somewhere in the subterfuge is "Orwell hated intellectuals" then plainly hints he was a massive intellectual and hypocrite himself. Then it gives the unnecessary details of his death "died at the age of 49 from a neglected lung condition." Here's my perception of the intro message/s both direct and not: 1 Orwell was a man of contradictions (a nutcase) to be trusted only so far [as it serves left wing arguments] 2 Orwell was a basically a communist 3 Orwell hates US style "totalitarianism" (laugh!) 4 in the rare case a student reads this book and realizes the actual message just remember Orwell was so incompetent he couldn't even take penicillin. Then at the end of the book is a completely unnecessary "Afterword". Or call it what it really is: Left Wing Damage Control. This little essay was the absolute most sickening form of literary parasitism. It was so unfathomably pompous I flipped to the end paragraphs to get <the> message. Predictably it ends by saying 1984 is far more relevant to the US (and west) than it is to Russia. "1984 can not be dismissed as Stalinist barbarism, for we in the West are equally guilty." Brilliant, even more so when you consider the worthless professor wrote this masterpiece in what was probably the American golden age. There is no excuse for such misleading "features". Seriously, was this published by an ivy league lobotomy tank? This is the version that would probably end up in the hands of students. What an abomination. With this edition as the standard its less tragic that 1984 is on a fraction of the reading lists as say (insert any black author's name here). The greatest censorship of this book is that it is more difficult than most required readings. Maybe that's why the so called experts seem to have not even read 1984. So until Hollywood makes the movie (HA!) [staring the great Anthony Hopkins as Winston, Liam Neeson as O'Brien and a mustached Ronald Reagan as Big Brother] students can get excellent marks by reading these two "features" and reciting the university intellectual sanctioned message. Such a doctrine would probably be much more wordy, grand and self glorifying than what appears to be their underlying message... IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.
0 of 15 people found the following review helpful:
George Go Home, June 22, 1998
George had a good idea, I'll give him that, otherwise the book fell short. Very short. For me the book took a downword turn during the time where Winston started having a love affair with some girl. This girl latter became a thought police inforcer, which surprised me none. I found the book to be a bore of a read and very predictable. My advise to all of you fair readers is to steer clear of this vile book. You will live longer because of it.
1 of 10 people found the following review helpful:
Only read this if you like getting depressed, May 2, 1998
This is a good example of the fact that pessimistic and shocking books often receive rave criticism while dynamically optimistic books are dubbed "unrealistic"... NO further comment.
0 of 11 people found the following review helpful:
George had a good idea but the book really stunk, February 19, 1998
At first I did like the book. Then it just started to suck right around the time when Winston was getting sexually involved with his girl friend. I hated the book so much that I forgot her name. The first hundred or so pages i liked, then it just got really boring. So II highly reccomend that you DO NOT READ THIS BOOK. And please for the love of God don't read that "Brave New World" book by Hoxley. It is twice as worse as 1984. To put it bluntly, DON'T READ ANY GEORGE ORWELL. Your just waisting your time.