Kerry Nietz's Reviews > Brave New World

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
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Jan 12, 2016

really liked it

I somehow missed reading this book during my high school and college years, even though I read many of the other classic dystopian novels—namely “1984”, “Fahrenheit 451”, and “Logan’s Run”. I can’t say that I found “Brave New World” as immersive as those other novels, but it was easily as compelling. I wanted to know what would happen next. Especially when the “Savage” arrived on the scene. What affect would his presence have on Huxley’s “perfect” society?

Given when “Brave New World” was written, 1931, it is the earliest of them all, and surprisingly the most predictive, I think. At some level western society has become obsessed with pleasure and immediate gratification. Many of us use chemical means to keep us happy, or at least, numb. We are constantly conditioned to consume, and steered toward one ideological bent or another. We often secretly suspect that the only ones benefiting from all this conditioning are those that are in charge.

One thing I found interesting from the notes that follow the book was the talk about its reception, and how “Brave New World” was criticized for its obsession with sex. I would guess most of today’s readers wouldn’t be offended by that part at all. Many of them, like the characters in story, would find such an objection weird or even prudish by today’s standards. What I think those readers would be more uncomfortable with is the page or two of God-talk that comes at the end. From experience, I know that spiritual discussions even less specific could brand a book today “preachy” and therefore objectionable.
Ah, how far we’ve come.

Sadly, I think you nailed it Mr. Huxley. I enjoyed this book. I applaud its predictive power. And I like the preachy parts where the characters try to wrestle with truth. Good stuff. I recommend it.

Note: The HarperCollins eBook version had formatting issues that made reading a little troublesome, especially in the early chapters. There was no space between section changes, so it was difficult to tell when one character POV started and another began. Confusing!
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Reading Progress

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January 12, 2016 – Shelved
January 12, 2016 – Finished Reading

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