William Golding’s amazing, spellbinding novel Lord of the Flies tracks the way a group of schoolboys descend from civilization into savagery. The boys are stranded on an island with no grownups, and while this seems like paradise at first, island life quickly turn sour.
William Golding successfully manages to portray the dystopian potential that lurks on the island, due to the darkness within the children themselves. Once allegiances have been made, the children think that they’re safe… but they’re not, as gradually the boys turn on each other. The fact that Golding’s characters are recognisable as “school yard” stereotypes makes the boys’ cruel behaviour towards each other seem shockingly sinister.
One character whose experience heightens the tragedy of the boys’ experience is Piggy. Golding sculpts Piggy into someone who all readers can relate to and recognise; everyone can recognise within Piggy a victim of bullying, or perhaps even spot their own vulnerability. Amid the mindless brutality on the island, Piggy is a character that we can easily sympathise with and relate to.
Overall, Lord of the Flies is a gripping, action-packed and well written book that forces you to consider whether humans are essentially good or evil.
Na’Imah Laurent Dixon