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The Write Stuff: A Final Word

AndyF

Shadow Under-Secretary for Treacle & Jam Mining
Patreon supporter
#5
Indeed. I didn't recognise the second one, so did a quick search & all that returned was some unknown pastor in the US by the name of M.L. King Jnr? A Doctor of Philosophy apparently, no published novels though.
 

Md139115

You have not even begun to grasp the madness
#6
I also wonder how much the physical placement in the book of the last word matters as well.

I first read 1984 in my freshman year of high school (so year 10 for you all?) in the free moments between classes and after class waiting for the bus. Now I approached the end of the book on a warm spring day with only a few minutes to go before I had to leave, so I was rushing a bit. The edition I had was this one and in it, the last paragraph of the book was a perfect rectangle fitting comfortably in the bottom of its page just so it looks like an ordinary page with the end of the paragraph on the next. So I rush through the monologue of Winston in the cafe and the final paragraph, barely paying attention, and turn the page to find nothing. Confused, I turned back and properly reread it.

It was like a punch to the gut - the single greatest emotional impact I’ve had reading a book before or since. In that moment, I was so overwhelmed with terror that I would have willingly joined some far-right anti-government militia in the mountains had they come recruiting and it took a few minutes before my normal sensibilities were restored. And all because that powerful and infamous last line was placed in such an innocuous spot.