Most people think 15-year-old Charlie is a freak. But then seniors Patrick and his beautiful stepsister Sam take Charlie under their wings and introduce him to their eclectic, open-minded, hard-partying friends. It is from these older kids that Charlie learns to live and love.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower is the story of what it’s like to grow up in high school. More intimate than a diary, Charlie’s letters are singular and unique, hilarious and devastating. We may not know where he lives or to whom he is writing. All we know is the world he shares. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it puts him on a strange course through uncharted territory. The world of first dates and mixed tapes, family dramas and new friends. The world of sex, drugs, and music—when all one requires to feel infinite is that perfect song on that perfect drive.
Through Charlie, Stephen Chbosky has created a deeply affecting story, a powerful novel that will spirit you back to those wild and poignant roller coaster days known as growing up.
©1999 Stephen Chbosky (P)2012 Recorded Books
Elementary/middle school teacher. Lived in Japan for a few years. Avid listener to music, books, and the like. All this to say I have a wide appreciation for all types of literature from books for young adults and kids to sci-fi, fantasy, historical fiction, world literature, etc.
Inside youth's mind
As dramatic and tragic as Green's A Fault in Our Stars. Chbosky captured the mind of a hurting youth better than anyone I've ever read.
He was a wonderful main character/narrator!
The entire ensemble. So many interesting stories and personalities.
A must read for anyone who works with youth. Hard to hear at times, but you get connected with the main character better than most books I've read.
I am glad I saw the movie first. I disliked the book! I am sorry I ordered it. Nothing against the person who read it. The movie was excellent. I am glad they could make such a great movie from a not sfo great book.
I have only listened.
Gave me insight into my childern, their experiences.
The performance was done well. I dont know that it would have been different if I had read it myself.
Sam. She sounded like a really nice girl.
I'm a corporate training consultant and adjunct professor who loves to read! I'm always looking for the next big thing.
It has been several years since I first read The Perks of Being a Wallflower. I remember how much I enjoyed the book then, and I was thrilled to learn that the book was being made into a movie (which I have not yet seen). Before I watch the movie, I wanted to re-read the book, and I think I enjoyed it even more this time than I did the first time. Personally, I believe that this book will become a classic, and it will be read in high schools across the country one day if it isn't already.
Before I review the book, I just want to state how much I enjoyed the narrator's performance. Noah Galvin was the perfect person to read this book. He could so easily be the main character, Charlie. His voice was exactly what you would expect a 15-16 year old boy to sound like. Moreover, he was able to change his voice enough to sound like the other characters in the book--and it was very believable.
The story is written as a series of letters from a boy whose alias is "Charlie" to a "Dear Friend," who remains anonymous throughout the book. Following the suicide of close friend, Charlie is learning how to participate in life. He is incredibly smart, and he eventually finds two people, Sam and Patrick, who quickly become his best friends.
The letters that Charlie writes detail the adventures and misadventures that he and his friends have. Many of these descriptions reflect the challenges of being a teenager and growing up--which is something that I believe every reader can relate to. Just of a few of the themes that show up in these letters include violence, sex, smoking, alcohol, and drugs. These are all common themes that teenagers struggle with, and Charlie is no different.
Fortunately, there are also a lot of positive themes throughout the books: friendship, family, positive role models, education, and many positive messages. In many ways, these themes seem to offset some of the challenges faced by the teen characters in the book. In addition, music and its role in teen culture is heavily referenced.
The book presents a bit of a twist toward its end. It's not exactly shocking; however, it provides a very interesting way to tie some of the book's themes together. Even with this twist toward the end, the books concludes on a very positive note. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is a teen--or has ever been one.
I like audiobooks.
It's a very real and very believable book.
It covers the years of my childhood and is very authentic. No other books have been quite able to do that. There may be many books able to accomplish this for other generations, but I am of course unable to judge that.
He sounded the correct age.
It is a film already.
The Fault In Our Stars. Both told from the point of view of a smart teenager dealing with difficult situations that are complicated even for adults. The themes are heavy but in both cases are dealt with beautifully.
So many, but I do love "feeling infinite"
This is one of the best audiobooks that I've ever listened to
The performance was absolutely outstanding. I've seen the movie and it was very good but I feel as if the narrator here was better than the actor in the movie.
EVERYTHING!!!!!!! I loved this book from the beginning to end. Charlie is a character that is easy to relate to. The journey he takes to learn about himself and the secrets that he runs from keep you listening. I have read the book and saw the movie as well. All three are awesome!
You enter the mind of why someone so quiet as Charlie, lives in his world to just be happy and please others. He puts himself before others and you learn how not everything is always what it seems.
I loved the car scene with his friends. You see Charlie finally let his guard down in this scene and learn to live in the moment and cherish it forever. It brought me back to some many times in high school where I have felt just like this with my friends.
I would take Charlie out. I would love to discuss books, home, and getting through high school with him.
Take a listen! It is not long and it will keep you on your toes until the very end!
The innocence in the narration, the absolute honesty of the character. The narration is also very good, very true to the main character.
The three friends, driving with great music, feeling infinite.
Charlie, it's always fun to be able to talk to someone who speaks his mind openly... upon asking a lot of questions, of course.
Yes! The book was written as "letters", and each letter written seemed to be either about me, or someone close to me. Real, touching, and amazing.
The time period, the music, the raw emotion. The references to The Smiths 'Asleep' reminded me of going through those same experiences.
Charlie. I was just like him in school.
No one notices you, but you notice everything.
As I said, one of the best books in my collection. For anyone that remembers adolescence as anything less than perfect, this book will be incredibly relatable.
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