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Showing 1-10 of 6,718 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 9,094 reviews
on March 2, 2013
I am 74 years old. The world is different now; there are more risks and more choices than when I was 15, but this movie reminded me of what it felt like to be 15 and 16 in 1954 and 1955. In those days homework was accompanied by radio with Rock and Roll music thanks to Alan Fried, Ranger hockey against Maurice Richard, and Gene Shepard,the best story teller of all time. Most of us had after school jobs which gave us enough spending money to begin making choices independent of our parents, and every day we left home and entered the world alone, with very little confidence but with the hope that everything was going to work out. Watching Charlie going through his day, observing the antics of his friends and trying to make sense of it all, brought tears to my eyes. The beauty of the movie is that it captures the universal experience of adolescence, and fortunately, as difficult as the experience may be, just like Charlie, most of us make it through.
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on September 12, 2014
Loved it. Like "the fault in our stars" I tore through this one in 2 days. This is a book that will take you through the american high school growing up experience. It doesn't attempt to avoid any part of it, which is why it is often found on banned book lists at schools. I think it is easy to see why (though the author is apparently surprised). There is drug use, there is sexual stuff, some violence. Having said that, I don't think it is a book that emphasizes any of it, but simply acknowledges: these things are a part of the culture.

I really appreciate that this book does not overhype any part of life. It is not trying to sell you anything and that is so refreshing.

The story is set up as a character named charlie writing letters to a more mature person he has never met, a person who "listens and understands and doesn't try to sleep with people just because you could have." Someone describes charlie as being a "wallflower" --a person who observes things and doesn't participate. He tries and begins to participate a bit more often. He finds a group of friends that is something like the 90's equivalent of the modern "hipster" crowd, who likes to listen to music, read books, is not inclined towards pop culture, experiments with some drugs and alcohol.

This book is full of observations on the american culture from a wallflower perspective- someone who is in it, but observing it as much as participating in it. In retrospect it is beautiful for taking a calm look at it, not worried, but seeing what is there.

This book would be most valuable to the adolescents who are going through, and about to go through the experiences described. They will know that there are many parts that are socially constructed and they should know it is all a phase and to feel confident in who they are, there is more to life than what you experience as an adolescent. Experience that time, don't miss it, but be yourself, even if there is no immediate popularity, you will be fine.

Some parents would feel nervous about some of the topics in the book. But to be honest, that is life. I'm reminded of a certain man from Galilee who was eventually killed saying "don't worry about your life" and a certain hobbit from the shire saying "it's dangerous business to walk out your front door" ... it is. There are great experiences and ones that hurt and are sad. That's life. This book is a snapshot of life. If I continue to work with this age group, I will often recommend it.
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on June 8, 2016
Wow. This book had so many different levels and was really well-written. It follows a very smart freshman in high school who is a wallflower (surprise!). He's an introvert, prefers to watch than participate, reads a lot, doesn't have many friends. Two seniors take him under their wing, and this book follows his first encounters with drugs, alcohol, sex, and other social aspects of high school. In that journey, he uncovers more about himself than he or I really expected to.

This book is written from the freshman's point of view, almost as a diary, and I think his way of over-analyzing everything made it seem so real. I remember doing very similar things as a kid (and even sometimes now). Remembering every word someone has said, wondering why they had used some words instead of others. Taking things a little too literally sometimes.

For a while throughout the book, it didn't feel like there was much of a plot. This boy was going throughout his days, trying new things, talking about his feelings, exposing himself to the reader. It was entertaining and raw, but I didn't know where it was going or how this was going to wrap into a cohesive story with an ending that felt like an ending. In the final pages, you uncover this secret that's been hidden between the lines the whole time, but I never noticed it was there. It's one of those things where, you uncover the truth, and you want to reread the story now that you know where it goes. Definitely worth reading!
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on April 11, 2017
I will admit that I had a hard time getting into this book. I don't know if it is because I am 45, but I could not relate to Charlie much at all. However, my student teacher is teaching it, so I forced myself to go on. I felt it got better as it went along. Charlie never seemed as authentic as I felt he should be. For one thing, his writing style did not match what a "genius" would write. I also had a problem with his constant crying. I understand why he did, and I don't have a problem with boys crying, but it seemed like he only cried, but never tried to find a way to fix things or even figure out why he was crying. However, I think teens will like this book, or at least appreciate it. I like Chris Crutcher books better.
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on December 23, 2014
About The Perks of a Wallflower. This isn't an appraisal of the movie. I've only read the book, and certain portions of it are decidedly rated -X. Sexual references might as well have been less explicit, and would still have served their function of setting up a rather surprise ending. It's about a somewhat introverted individual who as a high school student comes to discover, through occasional therapy and mostly experiences with friends that he's carrying around some sub-conscious psychological issues which result in disassociative pre-cognitive defense mechanisms that interfere with normal social and interpersonal relationships.

O.K. I got sucked into reading it by the title (There were supposed to be perks? What perks?) I can only guess that it made it past the screen writers to become a feature film because they envisioned nubile sexually obsessed teens acting out the bizarre behaviors of the characters. The protagonist is a geek, but his friends, being a bit senior, if not so mature treat him decently. I think the movie turned up in one of my recommendations because actress Emma Watson plays the pretty girl he's got a crush on. The characters come across as believable, but nobody I'd want to emulate.

If I take any moral (or) lesson from these accounts, it's just a variation on the theme that most of us would much rather sound off with a friend to critique, instead of a mental pathologist obsessed with uncovering new venues of deviance. Charlie, the protagonist has a best friend who's gay. He's not the one who kills himself. He's the giver of hospitality. His step sister is Charlie's crush. But the real entertainment is reading about Charlie's family. If it weren't for the obligatory pornography that modern authors toss in to titillate the publishers, I would have said four-star rating.
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on March 8, 2017
When this book debuted in 1999, I was working in a large chain bookstore and I was the one to unpack it. With the original green cover and simple text "MTV Books" I was intrigued enough that I read it immediately. I loved it. I came of age in the early 90s myself (like Charlie) and this book is so true to life and authentic. It remains a favorite. The film was so good, I was pleasantly surprised and less so upon finding that Chbosky had a heavy hand in its creation. I recently purchased this for a friend's teenage daughter at her request and am excited to see how she likes it.
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on July 22, 2015
I have to admit that I wasn't interested in this book until I saw the trailer for the movie adaptation of it. Once I did decide to read it, I wasn't too sure what I was going to find inside it's odd cover.

I was thrown off a little at first because it's written a letter-like form. I got into it quickly, however, and almost read the entire book in one sitting.

The books rawness intrigued and captivated me in the same way as books like Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson. There's a realness to the story and the characters that sometimes make me wonder if they're based on real people and events.

The book was very well written and the story was amazing. The Perks of Being a Wallflower had me chuckling at times and tearing up during others. I am dying to see the movie now. (Note: I wrote this review right when the movie came out. I have since seen and it was awesome.)

Rating: 4 Stars.
Characters: Charlie, Sam & Patrick.
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on May 13, 2017
The Perks of Being a Wallflower, both the book and the movie, were, to say the least, life changing. Of course the book is always better, but the movie was still great. The movie did clear up the ending (no spoilers, I swear) because I didn't really get what happened to Charlie and it ended abruptly. Ezra Miller was phenomenal and his performance in the Rocky Horror Picture Show slayed my entire existence. My family didn't stop talking about it for days. I'd say it is suitable for kids 12 or 13+ depending on their level of maturity because of drugs and some traumatic experiences described. Please, for my sake, watch the movie.
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on April 9, 2017
To say I loved this book would be an understatement. To say that this story opens your heart would not do it justice. Charlie's coming of age story of his life is a familiar one. You may not have been the super introverted teen but maybe you did possess some awkwardness. You may not have lost your best friend but perhaps you've been around death. You may not have been molested but you struggled with your emotions at some point. The point is, the story is so relevant that it can be tailored to any individual's life. I've experienced this novel three separate times across 3 stages of my life, having a different perspective each time. I've experienced this novel as an introverted high schooler, as a depressed adult in my early twenties, and then again right before I became a graduate student. I've since listened to the audiobook an additional three times and I've seen the movie more times than I can recall. The story can be heartwarming and yet concerning. At times you'll feel so empathetic for Charlie that your hear is tearing out of your chest. You can feel what he feels. And you want for him what you feel he's so deserving of. No matter what stage of your life you're in, whether you're 15 or 45, you can place yourself in a similar situation that will have its own consequences, it's own repercussions, or its own triumph. And you will become instilled which a greater self-confidence and apprecitation for what you're doing in your own life, or what you wish to achieve, or what you're trying to dig yourself out from. This story exudes a sense of clarity through you, and you recognize that as it slowly moves along.
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on October 2, 2016
Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky is a book with a lot of challenging material in it. Even though these aspects are challenging, these things such as drugs, sex, abuse, and determining sexuality all come into play and are very important in this book. These topics are all very real things that should be addressed. This book really speaks to teens and adults in a way that nothing else can, it is an amazing story about the realities of high school and the world in general. In fact this book was so real, it was unlike any of the sugar coated high school books, Chbosky proves this by including “But because things change. And people leave. And life doesn’t stop for anybody”(Chbosky145) in his book. Personally I loved this book, if I didn't have to put it down, I wouldn't have. It is the kind of book that sucks you in until you are finished and wishing it was longer.
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