Lord of the Flies by William Golding – A Book Review
Lord of the Flies by William Golding is a very funny novel written about a group of British kids who spend the better part of the novel stranded on an unknown island. The novel centers on a small group of very young boys who are stranded on an island and their incredibly disastrous plan to run away from home. Their attempts to survive come dangerously close to disaster. There is a considerable amount of language that is used in this novel, and it may not be for everybody. However, if you are looking for a light-hearted, fun romp, then you will most certainly enjoy this entertaining children’s book.
Two boys, Jack and Tom, are the last remaining members of a pleasure craft that is supposed to take visitors to a world famous amusement park called Hatter’s Bird Sanctuary. On their last night before leaving, Jack and Tom decided that they will play a practical joke on the people at the park and sneak off to the beach where they plan to ambush a tourist, Ralph. But Ralph is more than just a tourist; he is the father of two children, Amy and Sam.
After making plans to ambush Ralph, Jack and Tom must travel through a giant marsh on the island. On the way, they encounter several runaway gorillas and a huge crocodile. The two children manage to hide behind a large tree, but are discovered by a giant hippo, Bitty, who wants to take them to his sanctuary, the top of a mountain. Although Sam and Jack hurry to get down to the beach, Bitty keeps them captive with a knife. He then proceeds to rape and kill them, much to the surprise of Ralph. Fortunately, a local hunter, Bobby, spots the scene and goes out to investigate.
When Bobby finds the bodies, he assumes that Sam and Jack killed each other. But soon after Bobby realizes the truth (the boys were just playing a practical joke on each other), Sam and Jack come across an injured piggy. Afterward, Sam and Jack run to Ralph’s house, where Ralph explains that the piggy was hit by a car as he and his friend tried to chase after a wild boar on the island. Ralph then goes on to tell Sam and Jack about the legend of the Lost Child, which involves the legend of a young child who drowns at sea and is magically transformed into a boy.
Afterward, Sam and Jack return to the beach, where they try to dig up the piggy. Unfortunately, Sam and Jack dig up too much ground at once and end up trapped underneath a waterfall. Fortunately, they are saved by a massive penguin who rescues them. As the credits roll, Ralph and a suddenly empowered Sam look upon the amazed faces of their friends and family. The credits then roll to the song “When You Lie Down” where Sam and Jack have finally managed to save the day.
On the island, Sam and Jack find ropes that seem to lead to a ruined ship on the island. Inside, they find old books, food containers, toys, and some bones. The bones are actually the bodies of some dead pigs that were buried there in the past. After discovering these bones, the two children decide to feed the pigs alive, but as luck would have it, a local bully strikes them and instead of killing them, he knocks them all to the ground, making them fall into a crevasse and sink to the bottom of the ocean.
Once they resurface, Sam and jack find themselves on the wrong side of a fence where a vicious crocodile is eating them out of hand. Fortunately, they are saved by two crocodile guards on the opposite side of the fence. From there, the adventure begins as Sam and Jack begin to struggle with a giant, who is after them, while the crocodiles continue to defend their cove from an approaching British army. Eventually, the crocodile gets his arm stuck in a noose trap and has to be pulled out of the water by Sam. Jack also manages to injure the giant, and the two flee from the island with Ralph.
The novel ends with the two children on the beach as the British army closes in on the island. As the fighting continues, Ralph makes his way to the top of a tall palm tree, where he is confronted by the last of the cannibals. As he attempts to attack the massive, roaring pig, Sam and Jack notice that the pig has sharp teeth, which easily rip through the iron bars protecting the village. Then, just as the battle appears to be finished, Ralph leaps to the ground, where he is overcome with sudden, powerful winds. In the meantime, Sam and Jack managed to make their way to the safety of their ship and escaped the island with Ralph, just as its darkness begins to envelop the world.