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The Allegory Of The Farm

by Rebecca Bynum (Sept. 2008)

Cry Wolf
by Paul Lake
Benbella Books, 215 pgs.

Paul Lake’s allegorical novel Cry Wolf is a rare and happy find. A political fable generally dealing with the collapse of civilization, it succeeds on many levels. The overriding metaphor of the novel is the farm vs. the wild standing for civilization vs. barbarism, but in specific ways each farm animal might be seen as a symbol for one aspect of society (dogs, the police force and legal institutions, the bull, the military, the owl, the academics, the goose, middle class values, etc.). Each species of wild animals also represents one aspect of the forces working wittingly or unwittingly to destroy our way of life (the deer, a harmless refugee, raccoons, Mexican immigrants, possums, other immigrants, beavers, foreign aid entanglements, the bear, communism, and foxes, coyotes and wolves, Islam). more...