Home Reviews Books Animal Farm by George Orwell: Book Review

Animal Farm by George Orwell: Book Review

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A flock of animals coming together to hear the elder Pig address them, sheep, horses and various animals gathered around to hear the speech, this all sounds like a scene right out of a cartoon or a fairytale. Animal Farm, may sound like a book along the lines of Winnie the Pooh, but will surprise you deeply because this apparent fairytale is a brilliant satire about communism! George Orwell, published Animal Farm On 17th August, 1945. It is an allegorical novel that is simple to read. Animal Farm has been decorated with awards such as Retro Hugo Award and has been chosen as one of the best 100 English-language novels.
The story starts with Old Major, a senior pig who is respected all through the farm calls a meeting. All the animals duly gather and he announces his time coming to an end, leaving them all with a dream wherein all the animals of England would be free to live without the tyranny of humans. Soon, the Major departs but the seeds of a revolt are sown within the animals. One fine day, when Mr. Jones, the owner of the farm forgets to feed his animals, all hell breaks loose and the animals chase him away, conquering the farm for good! 

After Major passes away, two young pigs called Napoleon and Snowball preside as rulers. They take the throne with promises of a better life for animals, freedom and more food.  The animals adopt “Beasts Of England” as their anthem and develop 7 Commandments of Animalism. The animals live in harmony, enjoying their newfound freedom and remaining self-sufficient for a while. What follows after then is a story that mocks communism; how it starts all innocently wide-eyed with the promise to uplift the down-trodden and how it crashes. How greed and corruption seeps in slowly, making a revolution hollow.

Though the entire book is a treasure, a few characters deserve a special mention. Moses , a pet raven who no one really trusts or believes in. Boxer,  a hard-working horse who toiled every minute with the slogan of “I will work harder” and “Napoleon is always right” in the hope that when his retirement comes, he can spend it in peace, enjoying the ample rations. The most interesting character would be Squealer,  a white pig who was the leader’s mouth-piece,  had the gift of gab and could convince the animals about anything he wanted to. He was believed to be able to turn black into white. Once Squealer spoke, all the animals forgot that every day was worse that the last and started believing in a better future. What started out as "Four legs good, two legs bad" ended up as "All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others"

All in all, the book is written wonderfully. The language is unbelievably simple and the story is narrated with great clarity. It is sprinkled with sarcasm and humour throughout. Animal Farm is one of the top recommended books for children, but that should not stop adults from grabbing a copy A.S.A.P. Also, it’s a very small book, so if bulky books scare you, this is the perfect book to read!

George Orwell
Rs. 99/-

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