The Jungle by Upton Sinclair

**Student Review** by Gabby Bierlein

Genre:  Realistic Fiction

The Jungle is a novel about a Lithuanian family who moves to Chicago to work in the stockyards. It tells about their struggle for survival in this harsh new environment and the hardships that they must endure. Aside from this, The Jungle also gives an accurate description of the meat-packing industry in the early 1900’s and how life was for many new immigrants at that time. The author’s purpose for writing this book was to show the world how terrible an unskilled laborer’s life can be. After reading the book, however, the things that stuck with me the most were the atrocious conditions of the packing plants and how lax health standards were at that time. Thankfully, Upton Sinclair’s novel showed the world that something needed to be changed. Although The Jungle is almost 400 pages long, it does not get boring or old. The author keeps you reading with exciting twists and turns on every page. While some of the events that occur in the book are a little unbelievable, they add to the story and make it more interesting.
Overall, I thought this book was a very good read. Not only was it entertaining and interesting, it also taught me a lot about American history. It opened my eyes to the realization that life in a new country, especially one whose culture and language are unknown to you, can be extremely difficult. I would definitely recommend The Jungle to history fans and anyone who is looking for a good book. Although the book is long, and there are some slow parts, it is well worth the read.


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