People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.
No, because I saw the movie before listening to the book (twice, actually), and I liked the movie better. I still liked the book well enough to give it four stars, but I have two theories:
1. I saw the movie a second time because my 13 year old read the book over the summer and wanted to see it, so I went with her even though I'd already seen it. She liked the book better, I liked the movie better -- I think we were both partial to the version we experienced first. She didn't like the changes made in the movie, I thought the changes added depth and drama, especially in the ending. But we both liked both versions regardless of which one we liked better.
2. Rarely does the author of a book get to direct his own screen version. But Stephen Chbosky did, over a decade after publishing the book, and with the experience of writing and producing a TV show (Jericho) in the interim. Although largely faithful to the book, the ending is amplified from an epilogue to a climactic denouement. That carries a lot of weight in my mind, that he had a better idea of how to tell his story.
To put it into an emblematic nutshell, the song in the tunnel scene in the book is Landslide by Fleetwood Mac, in the movie it's Heroes by David Bowie. On my stereo, I like Landslide better. But for that scene? Heroes is so effective. So is the added detail that, in the movie, they didn't know the song when they experienced it in the tunnel, which is not the case in the book with Landslide. Gotta believe Chbosky knew what he was doing here, having grown over the years, and I believe that extends to the other changes he made.
But the book remains a very good read and/or listen, whether you saw the movie or not.
In the book and movie both, the Secret Santa scene is one the most memorable and satisfying moments. In the book, there is actually more depth to the set of gifts Charlie gives Patrick, an instance where it surpasses the movie. And Charlie's makeover, culminating with the typewriter Sam gives him as well as his first kiss, is a major leap his his coming of age.
Patrick is an irresistibly charismatic force in the movie, the person who takes Charlie under his wing for no apparent reason other than the openness of his character, the one who really teaches Charlie to be himself. But he doesn't quite shine that way in the book. As performed by Noah Galvin in Charlie's first person voice, with that much more interior monologue and introspection than is possible on screen, Charlie is clearly the best character, in addition to being the central and most important one.
Yes. Like seeing the movie in one sitting. And it's short enough. I didn't actually get to listen to it straight through, but close enough, listening to it in several bursts over the course of a 36-hour period.
I considered abandoning the book about a third of the way through. I didn't see where it was going, and I didn't like the format (the narrator writes you letters). The story took a long time to get going.
I wouldn't. Even though it took place during the time I went to high school and referenced bands and songs that I loved - even though I really wanted to love this book about a quirky high school kid who doesn't fit in - I really struggled with it.
I couldn't stand most of the characters.
He seemed a little disaffected to me.
I did see the movie, when I was just over halfway through the audiobook. It made me dislike the characters even more, although it showed me that the story was going to start getting a little more interesting if I just hung in there.
I would have read it in Middle School.
He really sounded like a dorky 16 year old.
Move on to more appropriate books for my age.
I remember friends of mine telling me that I needed to read this book back in High School, that it was amazing. Now that I have read it, I can understand how a High School or Middle School kid might love this book. It has all those feelings and sensitive issues that young adults are battling at that time.
Now being that I am in my mid 20s, this book wasn't as enjoyable for me as I had hoped. My patience for the character's break downs was pretty thin by the end of the story, but when I thought back to when I was that age I could relate to it.
I guess I've finally grown up and need to move on to books more appropriate for my age.
This book draws you in immediately. The narrator is perfect in his rendition of the story from the first-person perspective, and captured the tone and emotions of the main character Charlie so well. I'm glad I didn't just read it on the page, because now I couldn't imagine wanting anyone else's voice in my head telling this story. The book itself struck me as such an honest and accurate depiction of life as a young teenager, and how important and significant everything seems at the time, at that age. Song lyrics, book choices, friendships, family... It transported me back to the conflicts and constant emotional highs and lows of that age and that time in our lives, which become so easy to forget as an adult. Listening to this book was a romantic and nostalgic experience that made me think both fondly and sympathetically to my own high school days. A touching and beautiful story.
I watched author Stephen Chbosky's film adaptation of his novel first. I felt that, besides the voiceover element which many films use, the movie felt like it played out so naturally and un-book-like. I was anxious to spend more time with these characters and also to see how the movie's revelations were handled.
I quickly got over the fact that the entire novel is told in letters (I was going to use the word epistolary, but thought it sounded too pretentious... And now that I'm pitifully defending my writing style I sound just like this novel's narrator, Charlie), and was wrapped up in the fascinating point of view of this high school freshman.
It has to be said that, while the book is really a wonderful story, Noah Galvin turns it into something far more engaging and appealing with superb performance. He really embodies the character of Charlie and gives humor and depth to his neurotic and adolescent fears. He does something that I particularly love: As Charlie, he manages to perform the other character's dialogue with a sort of sarcasm that seems very true to his personality while at the same time the voices really resonate as being accurate to the people he is imitating.
Overall, this is a really terrific coming of age story. The nice thing is that the author was able to take this tale of his and turn it into an equally charming movie. Enjoy both!
I kind of expected more, but I still really enjoyed it. The characters are well written and the story is slow, but you don't notice.
Audible books keep me from having full blown conversations with my dogs during the day!
The reader is great!! Unfortunately the book is very dark and depressing.
My 17 year old daughter and I took a long road trip visiting universities. She chose this book. The description sounded like a fun teen type story. However the book concentrates on suicide, family violence, teen sex, gay sex, assaults, drugs, and depression.Although my daughter loved it, I wanted to jump out of the car to get away!
I like "coming of age" stories & this is a sweet story, with good narration, but I hate the format of the letters written to an unknown person. I wasn't offended by any of the content but it's definitely not appropriate for teens.
I'm going to give this one 3 stars, because I don't really know how I feel about it. What I really want to say is WTF?
There is so much going on in this book...not all of it realistic.
To tell the truth, I was in love with the story until the very end. The last twist to the story left me felling sad and a little weirded out.
The narrator, Noah Galvin, was pretty great. He made the story much more enjoyable.