I love Kubrick’s movie, but the book is a richer experience. Burgess – a linguist – created his own street argot for Alex’s first-person narrative. It quickly makes sense, and becomes natural on repeated readings. The vivid language of droogs and moloko is one reason I never tire of Clockwork Orange. Yes, it’s bleak and violent. Alex – although possessing a “decent brain” – isn’t a sympathetic character, but it’s a morality tale, exploring free will and state intervention. Is a man compelled to be righteous any better than a sinner? We’re probably little wiser at the climax – but it’s a chilling, thrilling journey.