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MonkeyNotes-Lord of the Flies by William Golding-Free Booknotes Summary
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The action of the novel has been set sometime in the future. A planeload of boys has been evacuated from England, where a world war is being fought against 'the reds' (essentially World War III or an un-named future conflict). Please remember that this is fiction. After their departure, an atom bomb is thought to have fallen on England and destroyed their civilization. The plane carrying the boys is attacked by an unknown enemy aircraft. The passenger tube carrying the boys is thrown out and the plane crashes, but the boys land safely on an uninhabited island that at first seems like a paradise to the boys.

The island is a small coral island, presumably in the South Pacific. Though it is uninhabited by other humans, it does have the necessities to enable the boys to survive including fresh water, fruit trees, and wild pigs. The island is described as boat shaped with two mountains, a sandy beach and an area of forest.


Major Characters


A handsome fair-haired boy of about 12 years of age. He is the son of a naval officer and a born leader. As the initial elected leader of the group of boys, he tries to remain rational and fair. Even after most of the boys have deserted him, he tries to maintain his rationality. British pronunciation of the name would be "Rafe".

Jack Merridew

A self-centered twelve-year old boy who is a contrast to Ralph. Both impulsive and aggressive, he is a tall, thin boy with red hair. At the beginning of the book, he is leader of the choir boys, but wants to be the chief. When he forms his own group, he turns the boys into hunters and savages.


A friend of Ralph who supports the leader until the end. He is short, fat, clumsy, physically unfit, and suffering from asthma. He is also an orphan. He wears thick spectacles and is almost blind without them. Although he is the most rational and sensible boy in the group, all the others enjoy making fun of him, especially Jack. He is killed at the end of the novel by Roger, who rolls a huge boulder onto him.


Aa small, timid, skinny boy with straight, coarse hair. He keeps to himself, thinks deeply about things, wanders alone in the jungle, and has trouble communicating. He discovers the dead airman whom the other children call the beast. He is mistaken for the beast and killed when he tries to explain. He is presented as a Christ-like figure.

Minor Characters

Sam and Eric

Iidentical twins who are always found together. They side with Ralph until Jack forces them to join his tribe.


A sadistic older boy who becomes Jack's right hand when he is the savage chief. Cruel and brutal, he pushes a boulder towards Piggy and kills him.

Maurice, Stanley, Robert

Jack's hunters.

The Choirboys

Singers who are led by and are loyal to Jack.


The little boys of the group between the ages of four and six. They have no distinct identity of their own. They lead an aimless life of eating, sleeping, and crying.

The Naval Officer

A British seaman that appears at the end of the novel to rescue the boys.

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MonkeyNotes-Lord of the Flies by William Golding-Free Online Plot Synopsis


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