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A Clockwork Orange (Norton Critical Editions) Paperback – January 4, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-0393928099 ISBN-10: 0393928098 Edition: Reprint

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Product Details

  • Series: Norton Critical Editions
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; Reprint edition (January 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393928098
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393928099
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #169,317 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Anthony Burgess (1917–1993) is the author of many works, including A Clockwork Orange, The Wanting Seed, Nothing Like the Sun, Honey for the Bears, The Long Day Wanes, The Doctor Is Sick, and ReJoyce.

Mark Rawlinson is Senior Lecturer at the University of Leicester. His books include British Writing of the Second World War, Pat Barker, The Second World War in British Fiction Since 1945, and Camouflage: Modern War and Visual Culture.

Customer Reviews

Ingenious in the way it is written, executed, and created.
S. Shamma
This alone makes this book worth reading and all the effort worthwhile.
Dr. Bojan Tunguz
I wanted to read it before I watched the film and I'm glad I did.
Rachel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 22 people found the following review helpful By A. A. Stewart on October 10, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Just so you know, the Kindle version of the Norton edition is just the novel and Burgess' intro. It doesn't contain the supplementary materials that make a Norton edition valuable to have.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Anthony Peters on December 30, 2011
Format: Paperback
Well oh my little brothers, patient and tolerant though I may be, I just couldn't help but have a malenky smeck at some of the grazhny customer reviews by the like indignant vecks and ptitsas here. Like the starry ptitsa who creeches about the like excessive ultraviolence, saying this is not her idea of "entertainment". Personally droogies, I find Burgess's ingenious creation of a whole new vernacular language and youth subculture to be hilariously horrorshow entertaining. The more specific point the naysayers miss is that Burgess is using the violence merely as a vehicle to pose some deep moral questions about the nature of morality and the seeming impossibility of expunging violence from the human soul. A lot of reviewers are also falling into the trap of thinking that Burgess intended merely to shock or to sensationalise, which couldn't be further from the truth. His tongue is very firmly in cheek. Persevere through the first chapter or so and the nadsat becomes strangely "right", somehow enhancing the realness of the world Burgess creates. 4 stars rather than five only because of a redemption story in the final chapter which doesn't quite fit. Nevertheless, this remains a courageous and darkly comedic philosophical masterpiece which will reward those willing to push through the intimidating language.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kurt A. Johnson TOP 1000 REVIEWER on August 24, 2012
Format: Paperback
In this book about an out-of-control near-future, young Alex is a cynical and violent young man, living in England. Alex has two loves in his life: listening to classical music and seeing flowing blood. Stealing cars, raping women, brutally beating anyone he feels like - it's all an evening's lark to Alex. But, when an elderly woman dies after being attacked by him, Alex finds himself doing hard-time in an over-crowded prison. Offered a chance to get out after a mere fortnight of "treatment," Alex jumps at the chance. Little does he realize just how successful this treatment will be, and all the changes they will make.

This is a rather interesting book, painting a dark picture. Indeed, it's definitely not a book for the faint of heart. I think, though, that this does paint a surprisingly accurate picture of certain elements of modern, Western society. Alex feels the "Joy of the Knife," the same as Macheath did in The Threepenny Opera, and as the recent rioters of London and the flash-mobs of Philadelphia and the Wisconsin State Far do today.

The one flaw in this book is the twenty-first chapter, which was omitted from the original American editions of the book. In this chapter, Alex turns 18, and turns away from his early violence. Indeed, the author seems to suggest that at 18, the criminals suddenly embrace middle-class values and become solid, productive citizens (drinking tea, and attending mildly amusing cocktail parties). Coming at the end of such a frank book, this chapter appears nothing less than Pollyannaish (or as the author put it, "Kennedian").

No, this is an interesting book, one that you should read and consider...except for the last chapter.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Steven on July 4, 2011
Format: Paperback
I'm a new fan!

A Clockwork Orange had been sitting on my to-read shelf for quite some time before I decided to pick it up. I kept avoiding it, and I'll tell ya why - it was because when I bought the book I had read a couple pages and immediately I hated it because I couldn't understand what the F Burgess was trying to say! But I couldn't give up on a classic so easily, so I bought it anyways, and on the to-read shelf it went -- and stayed.

I should have read this a lot sooner! Yes, the nadsat slang drove me nuts at first. I thought Burgess was trying to drive me into a world of madness! Perhaps to bring me to a similar level as our narrator, Alex. But, by the end of the book I was driving my wife nuts, I'm sure she still would love to tolchock me on the gulliver.

You've probably read a plot synopsis already(or maybe have seen the movie), so I'll leave that alone here and just lay out some opinions -

I still haven't seen the movie, but I do know one thing for sure - I too would have chosen the same version as Kubrick. The 21st chapter isn't terrible, but in my opinion the difference between the 20th and 21st chapter is so radical that I felt the book lost some of it's impact. I understand what Burgess was going for in the 21st chapter, but when I read the book, I read the 20th chapter as a finality, just so I could think on it for bit, then I read the 21st chapter a day later and I'm in the camp that believes ending it on 20 gives one a bit more to ponder on. Plus, it's chilling as hell, and I liked that.

The only other minor issue is that much of this story does feel a little contrived, especially towards the end.
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Format: Paperback
"A Clockwork Orange" is a novel by Anthony Burgess, and it is one of the most famous works of dystopian fiction. It has been made particularly famous by Stanley Kubrick's film adaptation, and both the film and the book are routinely ranked in various surveys amongst the most significant works in their corresponding genres.

One of the main idiosyncrasies of the book is the use of an invented teenage slang (or more specifically "argot") called Nadsat. Burgess was a polyglot, so for him it was an interesting exercise to create a whole new manner of speaking. Nadsat was largely based on Russian words with a few traditional English slang words and phrases. One of the motivations for the invention of a completely fictional slang was Burgess' desire to keep his characters fresh and relevant for a foreseeable future. Thus, a use of any concurrent argots would have made book dated very quickly. However, the heavy use of Nadsat makes "A Clockwork Orange" fairly difficult to read. My native language is Croatian, another Slavic tongue, and I found that I was able to understand majority of the Russian words without a need for a glossary. Nonetheless, the Anglicized orthography of the words made them sufficiently alien to me that I needed to pause and think about the meaning of those words as I was reading. If you are not familiar with any Slavic languages, then either try to go through a glossary of Nadsat words or try to figure their meaning out from the context.

If you can get past the language then "A Clockwork Orange" will present you with one of the most innovative and original works of fiction in the twentieth century. Burgess' ability to completely get into the head of a delinquent youth is astounding and has not lost any of its original freshness.
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A Clockwork Orange (Norton Critical Editions)
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