sense -- is the
inner meaning of the Party slogan: War is peace.
Winston stopped reading for a moment. Somewhere in remote distance a
rocket bomb thundered. The blissful feeling of being alone with the
forbidden book, in a room with no telescreen, had not worn off. Solitude
and safety were physical sensations, mixed up somehow with the tiredness of
his body, the softness of the chair, the touch of the faint breeze from the
window that played upon his cheek. The book fascinated him, or more exactly
it reassured him. In a sense it told him nothing that was new, but that was
part of the attraction. It said what he would have said, if it had been
possible for him to set his scattered thoughts in order. It was the product
of a mind similar to his own, but enormously more powerful, more
systematic, less fear-ridden. The best books, he perceived, are those that
tell you what you know already. He had just turned back to Chapter I when
he heard Julia's footstep on the stair and started out of his chair to meet
her. She dumped her brown tool-bag on the floor and flung herself into his
arms. It was more than a week since they had seen one another.
'I've got the book,' he said as they disentangled themselves.
'Oh, you've got it? Good,' she said without much interest, and almost
immediately knelt down beside the oil stove to make the coffee.
They did not return to the subject until they had been in bed for half
an hour. The evening was just cool enough to make it worth while to p