The Chrysalids Mass Market Paperback – Sep 23 2008
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Perfect timing, astringent humour ... One of the few authors whose compulsive readability is a compliment to the intelligence Spectator Remains fresh and disturbing in an entirely unexpected way Guardian
About the Author
John Wyndham Parkes Lucas Benyon Harris was born in 1903, the son of a barrister. He tried a number of careers including farming, law, commercial art and advertising, and started writing short stories, intended for sale, in 1925. From 1930 to 1939 he wrote short stories of various kinds under different names, almost exclusively for American publications, while also writing detective novels. During the war he was in the Civil Service and then the Army. In 1946 he went back to writing stories for publication in the USA and decided to try a modified form of science fiction, a form he called 'logical fantasy'. As John Wyndham he wrote The Day of the Triffids, The Kraken Wakes, The Chrysalids, The Midwich Cuckoos (filmed as Village of the Damned), The Seeds of Time, Trouble with Lichen, The Outward Urge, Consider Her Ways and Others, Web and Chocky. John Wyndham died in March 1969.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book quickly devolved from a quality allegory to an Indiana Jones sequel, however. We have the good guys being chased by the bad guys, being caught by worse guys but eventually saved by the very good guys! Even though the author attempts to explain this final sequence under the banner of 'evolution', he does so in an awkward and trite manner. Gone is the high quality symbolism and is replaced by a mistaken view of evolution that states that in order for improvement in a species to occur, the former population must be totally destroyed. If that were to be the case, there would remain only one species of insect, one species of birds, one species of fish, etc.... Because of this tenet, there can be no full evolution of a complete population into a variety of sub-species as we presently see all around us. As shown in the final sequence, there is no emotional distress that the 'advanced' population should experience while exterminating the 'lower' species!Read more ›
David lives in a very strict community, where God was the boss and it was up to everyone (especially his dad) to obey him. The biggest message “God” gave out was: “Watch thou for the mutant! The Devil is the father of deviation. Blesses are the norm.” Mutants to them, was the most deadly thing on earth. If an animal was a mutant (four legged chicken, or two headed cow) they were slaughtered, a yield of unusual crops were burned, but a person? They were sent to the Fringe. In David’s community there was the place itself, surrounding the community was the Fringe; a place where they sent mutants as it is a place God does not rule. Outside of the Fringe was the Badlands, given its name as nothing can live there (due to the high radiation levels) His community is in Labrador, Newfoundland, the only place he ever known, which is quite a shame that he had to leave because of his family.
David was born to know that mutants were sent by the devil. His childhood friend, Sophie, was not evil, she was actually quite nice. The only issue with her was for her sixth toe on each foot. Just because she had an extra little toe, doesn't mean she is the Devil’s child, right? This was the first time David started questioning his family methods.Read more ›
For its time period to even suggest religion into a bad view is very brave of the author. To call out some of the most outrageous judgements religion causes in a society. (At the time of writing you have to realise that the majority of the people in the Western world were highly religious and more so Christian than any other). Judging people because they are different from you or what your religion/belief says is the "norm".
The book is a worthwhile read, but the only thing I disliked was the ending.. I understand that he was probably getting tired and wanted to wrap it up.. but leaving it on a cliff hanger would have been better than what it did.
This book also highlights some reasons I extremely dislike religion. Given the freedom and complete power, I could see modern religious groups doing this exact thing to anyone different from them. The extremists take it over and cast out/kill anyone different.
Waknuk was fortunate, because it was in Labrador, far away from the center of the nuclear war, the Badlands, further to the south. Since God had sent Tribulation down upon the Old People, humans had been struggling to return to the level of civilization that the Old People were at. Now because the past generations of Waknuk had been very careful, the community was now almost free of deviations that were the result of Tribulation. Any that did appear were destroyed or, in the case of blasphemies, banished to the Fringes.
At the beginning of the story David meets Sophie Wender and discovers that she is a physical deviant with six toes on each foot. Both she and her family are forced to run away when they are discovered by Alan Ervin. They are captured and banished to the Fringes. This problem is intensified when he sees his aunt driven to suicide because she has given birth to her third deviated baby.
David is concerned for his own personal safety when he realizes that he and the group are also deviants, because of their ability to communicate with each other in thought patterns.
Although they manage to hide their deviation, the birth of David's little sister, Petra, causes numerous problems. This is because she is still an infant and is unable to control her powers. An incident occurs in which she, David and his cousin Rosalind, are found out.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Hooray my CD finally arrived and even though I have not listened to it yet I know I will love it as I am a big John Wyndham fan...ThanksPublished 20 days ago by Amazon Customer
Picked this up because my son is reading it for grade 8 English. First read it 30 years ago as a science fiction story; this time around it read like a moral tale. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Steve E
Really enjoyed this book. It takes a deep look at what is perceived as 'normal' in society.
Everyone is different, but this story takes a strong stance against abnormalities,... Read more
I chose this rating because this is an incredible novel. I could actually imagine the characters and the settings. It was well written and very thought out. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Kyrsten Blowing
Good story. Strong beginning and middle but tails off toward to end.Published 16 months ago by Mr. Lego