The Book Vipers discussion

This topic is about We
Group Read Archive > Group Translated Fiction Read - We - November 2016 - SPOILERS ALLOWED

Comments Showing 1-9 of 9 (9 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Jo (new)

Jo Weston (joster) | 1697 comments Mod
The discussion thread is now open. Spoilers are allowed on this thread. Don't read on if you haven't finished the book. Can you also unclick the 'Add to my update feed' people don't see your comments in their home screen. Things to consider:

1. Did you like the book?
2. Do you think that the author covers the subject adequately?
3. Do you like the tone and language of the book?
4. Was there any part of the book that was important or significant to you?
5. Have you learnt anything from the book?
6. Has reading this encouraged you to look for other books on the subject?

message 2: by Pamela (last edited Nov 02, 2016 02:31AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Pamela (bibliohound) | 359 comments Just finished this - I was struck by how much both Huxley and Orwell borrowed from this - the single state and the Benefactor are very like 1984 and the savages outside the wall (and the hairy hands) are like Brave New World. So I could admire the innovation and the originality of Zamyatin's ideas, and how they influenced others.

I liked the character of I-330, rebellious and enigmatic. I found the style difficult at times, as it was disjointed, but I did feel it reflected the confusion of D-503 as he discovers his 'soul'. Also Zamyatin captured well the insecurity of living in a totalitarian state if you do not conform totally - not knowing who can be trusted, worrying if your words will be misconstrued...

Also thought how the sky and weather changed to reflect D-503's feelings was very evocative and a simple but effective device.

This seems a book that I would need to read again to fully appreciate all the subtleties, but overall I enjoyed it.

Paul (halfmanhalfbook) | 5462 comments Mod
Thought this was ok in the end. As Pamela said, Orwell and Huxley shamelessly barred many hing from the text, but in my opinion made so much more of it. It was chilling at times, but the characters were flat; perhaps deliberately, I am not sure.

For me it is one of those that I am glad I have read it, but would rush to re read it. My review is heret

Catherine | 492 comments Mod
I didn't find this book chilling at all because in general people were happyish. Also I found Zamyatin's prose light and it made me envision a bright world as I was reading the book. I can see how much We influenced George Orwell. However, I found 1984 very scary and in addition Orwell's descriptions create a dark and heavy world which adds to the suffocating infiltration of big brother into all aspects of life.

message 5: by Joy (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joy Stephenson (joyfrankie) | 463 comments Finished this yesterday. I'm glad I've read it as it was interesting from a historical / literary point of view, putting 1984 in context. However it's not a book I think I'm likely to re-read. The atmosphere was less threatening than 1984, mainly because the narrator wasn't really rebelling against the system, which he largely supported, he had simply fallen in love with a rebel. I recall being devastated by the end of 1984 (read about 40 years ago) because Winston is aware of how he has betrayed Julia, whereas in We the narrator is not aware of his treachery due to his operation.
I did like the mathematical references, especially the recurrence of the problem of the square root of minus 1 (an imaginary number) throwing a spanner into the works of his concept of numbers being bound by strict rules.

Pink I just finished. For such a short book this took me several days to get through, as I found I'd read a few short chapters, then put it down again. I agree with most of the comments above, although I enjoyed it slightly more. I can see the similarities with Brave New World and 1984, which are two of my favourite books, so I expected to like this. I appreciated the simplicity of it, it wasn't too dark or disturbing and in some ways not a lot really happened, but I enjoyed the process of reading through D-503's journal as he struggled to discern what was the reality of his world. The ending was fitting for the story too and didn't disappoint.

Jason (jasondenness) | 1877 comments I'm about to start this one, been reading up on his life, he sure spent a lot of his time in prison.

Jason (jasondenness) | 1877 comments Not to shabby this one, the translation made reading tough at times. I think that it being a dystopian novel was only a small part of the book, I think the main part of the story was the awakening of D503, falling in love can be quite revolutionary at times.

Lisa (mrswhams) | 730 comments Mod
An excellent mini review, Jason... I was going to say the same! Enjoyed this but found it was a bit stilted in translation, the dialogue was hard work with all the ellipsis and incomplete sentences. The ideas were fascinating though. I can see how influential it was on Huxley and Orwell.

back to top