Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Book Review - Chrome Yellow by Aldous Huxley

When I first read Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, I was amazed at the sheer force of the novel and power behind the writing. My view of modern society forever changed after reading that book; I could place that novel in my own time and still find it harrowing. So it was that I went into reading Huxley’s first novel, Chrome Yellow, with the assumption that I would be blown away once more. According to the back of the book, it was banned for its frank and immodest portrayal of morality with regards to sex and interactions between men and women. What I found instead was a satirical novel about a group of British people staying at Chrome, the manor in question, and how the main character, Denis, struggles with his passions for Anne while struggling with his passion for being a poet. Although I read a 1922 novel with 2011 eyes, I did not find it to be quite a literary great, nor did I find it to be that “shocking”. The story flowed with interest, the British satire dripped on every page and the conversations between the men and women of the group were written well. However, I found something lacking in the novel, something that Huxley tried to do and missed for whatever reason. Either that, or I placed too much expectation on the book and felt disappointed when it did not deliver the same range of emotions as Brave New World did. No matter the disappointment, I enjoyed the book overall and look forward to reading more of Huxley’s work.

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