The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky One of the joys of book-blogging is discovering books you would not normally have come across. Of course there is always the risk that even despite a glowing review that promises a gem, you end up with what you consider a turkey.

One such book is, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, and one such review is Nymeth’s, but before I let her off the hook and let her know whether I liked the book or not, I need to let others who might not have heard about it, know what it is about. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

So, this is my life. And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I’m still trying to figure out how that could be.

Fifteen year old, Charlie, is just starting high school…

The narrative takes the form of a series of letters, where Charlie writes to an anonymous friend.

The letters explore Charlie’s thoughts on many topics such as introversion, participation in life, sex, and his experience with drugs. Throughout the story, Charlie – at the behest of his teacher – reads many books, and his thoughts on them individually and as a whole are also discussed.

It is a coming of age story, so of course Charlie develops throughout the year and it is a journey that is interesting to watch , and so he is better able to deal with a shocking realisation towards the end of the year, than he would have at the start.

The letters themselves are written in a fairly simple style, even though are often disarmingly candid. However, through them, Charlie is revealed to be a mature, intelligent and often complicated soul (shown by the fact the people he gets on best with, his friends and his English teacher, are all older than him), and yet in some ways he is very young and innocent, it’s an interesting mix and you can’t help but like him.

If I ever have kids, and they are upset, I won’t tell them that people are starving in China or anything like that because it wouldn’t change the fact that they were upset.

Nymeth, you can take a sigh of relief, because I did enjoy the book very much! The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

I’ll be honest though, it is not going to top out the best of the year list, but it is up there in the higher echelons – if not quite making the summit. Helped because Charlie is an immensely likable protagonist, who you really do care and feel for, and the very fact I spent a very relaxing Sunday afternoon gobbling up all but the first chapter or so, without putting the book down, shows how much I did enjoy it.

[rating:94/100]

Buy, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, from Amazon.

Darren

Bart, is a fully signed up member of Book Addicts Anonymous ;) Despite, constantly fighting a losing battle against his T.B.R pile, he is never happier than when he manages to sneak a new book in to the house!

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8 Responses

  1. Jena says:

    Glad you enjoyed it! Plus, I found it educational–I had no idea what magic brownies were until this book.

    Jena´s last blog post: Tar Sands by Andrew Nikiforuk

  2. Michael says:

    You had me worried there for a second. I’ve found people who were apathetic about this book, but nobody so far who really didn’t like it.

    Michael´s last blog post: [Review] Ender in Exile by Orson Scott Card

  3. Chris says:

    First Nymeth and now you! I REALLY can’t wait to read this one!!! It sounds so good!

    Chris´s last blog post: Sick Again…

  4. Nymeth says:

    yay, so glad you liked it :D I know what you mean, though. It’s not quite up there with Looking for Alaska, for example. But it’s still really, really good!

    Nymeth´s last blog post: Across the Wall by Garth Nix

  5. alice says:

    i actually think chbosky’s Perks is better than Looking for Alaska and Abundance of Katherines by John Green. Green writes clever stuff but Perks has more heart w/out the hard sell cool, clever language. And Charlie is a charmingly complex off-beat character. I think that’s why it resonates more than other coming-of-age novels. it’s being on banned book lists only adds to the appeal

  1. March 7, 2009

    [...] So, here the first one I’ve picked out to post this week: “So, this is my life. And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I’m still trying to figure out how that could be.” Charlie: The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky | Review [...]

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