What I thought of A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess:
Perhaps a review is in order for A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess. I can’t say I really liked this novel that much. I find the main character/narrator someone of annoyance, but then again I guess he was supposed to be that way. He’s a kid, and a little devil at that. I do like that he changes in the end (seemingly). That makes him dynamic. Burgess mentioned that the American version of his novel excluded the last chapter in which the protagonist changes for the ‘better’. He doesn’t disclose the reason that the chapter was excluded. My guess is it was a publishing matter. That’s the ugly thing about publishing I guess. Maybe his editor thought it would be a better sell if that last chapter were excluded. Burgess makes a good point that it’s not a story if the character doesn’t change. That’s arguable, and I won’t get into it here. I’m a young one in the game of literature so I’ll stand back. I’ve got years to go before I get better at the whole thing, reading and writing.
The language in the novel is something difficult, and it gets annoying at times when you’re looking for a great description, partly because you have to remember what some of these made up words mean. It’s a slang, I guess you could call it, called Nadsat. I admit that it does get crafty in some of the descriptions, being that it extends beyond just replacing normal English nouns as Burgess uses the funky argot to replace adjectives as well. For most of the novel Nadsat was mostly replacing nouns, and that wasn’t enough. It was annoying most of the time, but I say again, crafty as well.
The level of violence was scary, and dark, and intended to be so. Every night was a night of adventure for the so called droogs of Alex (narrator/protagonist) and his friends. They go around destroying things and harming people to their own amusement for no reason at all really, and that’s an obvious point of the novel. It’s one of the characteristics of youth Burgess tries to point out: youth is like a bestial mode of the life cycle, lacking in higher purpose and thinking (maybe), or reasoning capability. Maybe that’s the best way I can word it. I’m not editing this thing, so, moving along. The descriptive violence was something memorable. I think I can speak that funky language slang now and make reference to it because it’s so violent and almost impossible to forget.
I gave it 3/5 on goodreads.