New Deluxe Edition of Lord of the Flies

Penguin Classics have recently published two new editions of Lord of the Flies in the US, including a striking Graphic Deluxe Edition. The cover design, by Adams Carvalho, is bold and dramatic with a stunning use of colour. And now to explore the inside…

In her Foreword, Lois Lowry, award-winning author of children’s and YA fiction, discusses her first experience with reading Lord of the Flies, at the age of seventeen, where she recalls identifying with Ralph. She identified with him because they were both fair (blond), but critically, she realised after that Ralph as ‘the fair boy’ had a double meaning – he ‘played fair’ and ‘followed the rules’. Lowry considers her responses to the other named boys, and then illustrates the importance of the island itself: ‘the waterfalls and butterflies, the endless edible fruit, the soft sand, the clear blue ponds, and the pink cliffs’.

Lowry recalls her shock when the island society starts to break down and writes that she has ‘not been as jolted, before or since, by a shift in a book’s tone’. She concludes the essay with an examination of how she reads the characters now as an adult, and shows her hatred of one particular character…

Stephen King’s introduction to the centenary edition of Lord of the Flies is reproduced in the deluxe edition, which is typically brilliant, and includes his assessment that ‘Lord of the Flies has always represented what novels are for, what makes them indispensable.’

The edition concludes with some other gems. First, Jennifer Buehler writes about the experiences of reading and teaching Lord of the Flies and includes a handy guide to further exploration of the novel, and other suggested reading. E M Forster’s introduction to the 1962 edition is reprinted in full, and the book ends with E L Epstein’s essay from the 1959 US paperback – the version which caught the attention of American readers and helped to create this phenomenon of literature.

Lord of the Flies Graphic Deluxe Edition is available now.