The Jungle This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     Most people's idea of a good story is one where the prince whisks the princess from the tower and they ride off into the sunset to live happily ever after. If that is what you like, then The Jungle is not the bedtime story for you.

The Jungle follows the trials of Jurgis Rudkis and his Lithuanian family when they come to Chicago's beef district in the late 1800s. I know that doesn't sound very interesting, but the book wraps you up in their struggles to survive in streets that were rumored to be paved with gold but really are covered with the shards of broken dreams. It follows the family as they stumble deeper and deeper into the corrupt American web, as they purchase a house from a lying lawyer; get and lose jobs, health, and hope, and transform into a mere grease spot on the huge machine that is the beef industry.

The Jungle is expertly written. When the family has no hope you feel like you have none either. When Jurgis cries because his young wife dies, you do too, and when the family decides to carry on despite it all, you can't help but read on.

The Jungle makes you think, and thinking is the first step to becoming a more educated and informed person. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to escape the materialistic media bubble. It prompted modern sanitation laws in the beef industry and offers a look into the lives of immigrants. It's a fascinating novel that had a real impact on the world.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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