Chosen by Jo
A dystopian novel set in Airstrip One, Oceania which is in a state of perpetual war and where free thought is considered a thought crime. The all-seeing Big Brother, rules with tyrannical power.
☁ “This is my second favourite book of all time. Its relatable characters living in an alternative reality of tyranny act as warnings about what is possible when free thought is no longer a basic human right. While it contains all the hallmarks of a great novel, it’s the potential for disaster and lost freedoms that make it also a personal story.
“I do love dystopian novels and it is interesting to see how Nineteen Eighty Four is the clear influence for many contemporary stories. I read this first as a teenager and since have re-read parts many times and found references to it in many facets of life. As such, I feel like I’ve grown up with this book. Every part of it, the locations, the characters, the emotional journey – the potential for what if – are etched on my mind.” – Rachel
☁ “It’s hard to know what to write about Nineteen Eighty Four that hasn’t already been written by people far more insightful than me! This was an unsettling read that has obviously resonated with readers over the years to the extent that concepts from the book are now part of our lingo – for example Big Brother.
Between this and Animal Farm George Orwell has contributed to far too much of my brain’s worrying. While I acknowledge the obviously amazing contribution these novels have made to society’s discourse I would have been better off having read neither of them – I think I will happily add “Ignorance is bliss” to the Ministry of Truth’s slogans.” – Suzy
Secker & Warburg