Brave New World by Aldous Huxley - Book Club Review

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Aldous Huxley's profoundly important classic of world literature, Brave New World is a searching vision of an unequal, technologically-advanced future where humans are genetically bred, socially indoctrinated, and pharmaceutically anesthetized to passively uphold an authoritarian ruling order--all at the cost of our freedom, full humanity, and perhaps also our souls. “A genius [who] who spent his life decrying the onward march of the Machine” (The New Yorker), Huxley was a man of incomparable talents: equally an artist, a spiritual seeker, and one of history’s keenest observers of human nature and civilization. Brave New World, his masterpiece, has enthralled and terrified millions of readers and retains its urgent relevance to this day as both a warning to be heeded as we head into tomorrow and as thought-provoking, satisfying work of literature. Written in the shadow of the rise of fascism during the 1930s, Brave New World likewise speaks to a 21st-century world dominated by mass-entertainment, technology, medicine and pharmaceuticals, the arts of persuasion, and the hidden influence of elites. (Goodreads)

Many find dystopian novels to be either silly or too depressing. However, I find them incredibly interesting and consider the sub-genre to be one of my favorites to read. Regardless, I found myself not entirely looking forward to picking up Brave New World. I spend most of my reading time with modern YA and the transition to classic adult novels can be a bit brutal due to the expanded vocabulary and just overall increased denseness. This usually means I take twice as long to read classic books. Brave New World was different though. I quickly breezed through it and found it difficult to put it down so I could get some sleep. I even had a dream where I was talking about the book to someone...which has never happened before.
As I often find myself doing when I read these types of books, I could not help but find similarities between our world now and the world created by Aldous Huxley. This gave the book a terrifying twist as there are definitely people who exist in our world today that have beliefs that could lead us to a fake utopia that is similar to the one presented in Brave New World. Ultimately, this book left me pondering on the things that make us human and what purpose we serve on this planet. I definitely recommend it to everyone, even if you do not like the genre.

Rating: 5/5
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Image and book summary via Goodreads.

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