Going along with my idea of writing commentaries about stuff, I've also decided to start writing reviews about things as well. This first one is about the book, The Beach by Alex Garland.
At first it seemed that The Beach was just a ripoff of Lord of the Flies. But lately people have gotten pissed off at me because I say everything is a ripoff of something else, so I decided that maybe I should give this book a chance. I promptly retrieved the book from the fireplace and continued reading.
So basically there are several people on this island paradise. Most of them are travelers who had come there of their own volition. They seem to have created a very perfect society in which everyone does their part and lives happily. Their main struggle is trying to keep the island a secret and making sure they have a substantial amount of marijuana.
Oh, and did I mention the marijuana? On the other side of the island is a huge field of the stuff. So, or course, most everyone spends a lot of their time smoking, being high, or thinking about smoking and being high. I found this to be quite hilarious. And yet it was very necessary to give the right mood and flow of the book.
So anyway, eventually a part of the people on the island go a little insane and try to kill some people and only a few people survive. And why not? It has been shown time and time again that when a group of people are isolated for a long period of time, they will eventually kill each other, or possibly invent some new alternate use for radioactive elements. Either way most of them die.
I'm pretty sure that this book was meant to be viewed as more than just a bunch of stuff that happened. It could have represented society and that eventually we are all doomed. It could have also paralleled (not ripped off) Lord of the Flies, in that one interpretation stated that each character could represent a part of the human psyche. I'm not so sure that this is the case because the characters in The Beach seemed a little more three dimensional than those of Lord of the Flies.
Anyway, it was a great book no matter how you look at it. If you can get over all the f-words and all the pot-smoking doesn't bother you, I strongly recommend it.
I give it a solid 14 out of 17 on the mat6t rating scale.