This audio book was really special because it is a digital version of a 1977 recording made by the author.
What would happen if a group of boys (listen to his introduction below to find out why the island did not include girls) were put on an island without the restraints of civilization? Golding believed that the nature of man was basically evil. He wanted to explore the "beast" in all of us. They weren't just "playing" being stranded on an island. They were living the reality of it. It is a fable about the human condition. Since Golding was both a naval officer in World War II AND taught in a boys' school, he had probably observed quite a bit about the human condition. It is a novel about the loss of innocence too. That is where it goes along so nicely with the book I read right after it: The Hunger Games!
This book is referred to as a symbolic novel, but it can also be considered a dystopian novel:
This novel isn’t the 12th best on the list (it would be rated much higher in my opinion) but it’s at number twelve because of the on going argument whether this is truly a dystopian novel or not. The definition of dystopia isn’t necessarily clear, though the general definition is that it is a society in which misery and negative conditions prevail (or a seeming utopia gained at horrifying costs.)
As far as a dysfunctional society, the island with its stranded little boys is it, and once the conch shell is no longer seen as authority, everything breaks apart. If anyone wants to argue that an anarchy could work, this book would be an immediate argument against it. This is an incredible psychological work, and I’d say their society is definitely dysfunctional enough to count as a dystopia. (Top 12 Dystopian Novels)
I think it is a book everyone should read.
He does an introduction in the audio book where he states the whole idea behind the book. This is so worth listening to if you aren't going to get the audio version of this book: