Saturday, August 25, 2007

the perks of being a wallflower by stephen chbosky

I recently picked up a copy of the perks of being a wallflower by stephen chbosky, at my local Borders on the sale 3 for 2 table. ( incidentally, those are my favorite tables!) I picked this small novel up after having met someone a few months back who recommended it to me.

The story is that of a withdrawn teen undergoing the changes of entering high school,and the confusing quirks of teenage girls. Written in a series of letters to an anonymous friend the story takes shape as you learn the inner workings of a troubled teens past and how it affects his future. Normally I would not recommend a book published by MTV, nor would I typically approve of a story about a teenage boy and his girl troubles. But, as I am always curious about what interests others, if you recommend something to me, I will surely read it, eventually.

The supposedly simple, cliche, and shallow topic of a teenager dealing with high school is offset by the fact that the writing draws you in and makes you feel as though the letters are being written to you. Also, the main character, Charlie, transcends the concept of age, as he is very well versed both in literature and in music. Throughout the story he mentions several classic pieces of literature and even manages to offer critiques that most 20 or 30 somethings could agree with. Some of the novels the character mentions include but are not limited to: The Catcher in the Rye, To Kill a Mockingbird, On the Road, Naked Lunch, Peter Pan and The Great Gatsby. A great collection of works, no matter your taste or age.

On the topic of music, at one point Charlie collects pieces for a mix tape, and comes up with the following compilation:

Asleep by the Smiths
Vapour Trail by Ride
Scarborough Fair by Simon & Garfunkel
A Whiter Shade of Pale by Procol Harum
Time of No Reply by Nick Drake
Dear Prudence by the Beatles
Gypsy by Suzanne Vega
Nights in White Satin by the Moody Blues
Daydream by Smashing Pumpkins
Dusk by Genesis
MLK by U2
Blackbird by the Beatles
Landslide by Fleetwood Mac
Now, I will admit that this passage of what seems to be a great mix tape, forced me to stop and contemplate the realism of the teenage character. But, decided, much like I mentioned previously, Charlie is capable of transcending age.
Overall, it was a fast, engaging read and I don't want to ruin it for anyone else by telling you any more of the plot. I will recommend this one to anyone! Enjoy!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Andrea, sadly I do not know you, but you seem amazing. I am somewhat of a friend of Dave's and I suggested that very same book to him, a little while ago. I found it to be an amazing book, and I was happy to hear that someone found it to be decent as well. Sadly, Mr. Chbosky wrote no more books, or at least the last time I checked, and I think he has an amazing way of hooking his audience. I just thought it was great someone else had read that book. By the way, I am Mary. Nice to meet you.

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