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The Perks of Being a Wallflower (edition 1999)

by Stephen Chbosky

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11,026447255 (4.03)308
Member:BayardRustinLibrary
Title:The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Authors:Stephen Chbosky
Info:MTV (1999), Paperback, 224 pages
Collections:Your library
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The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky (Author)

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English (445)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  German (1)  All languages (448)
Showing 1-5 of 445 (next | show all)
This will forever be my feel good book. I am currently suffering through depression and have been for several years, and if there was a day that I mentally couldn't move then I pulled out this book. Charlie's words would envelope me, and I would lose myself in the pages of the novel. The book is not for the light of heart, and if you do choose to venture through Charlie's freshman year with him, be sure now to blink or you could miss a second of this beautiful piece. ( )
  juliamarinaro | Aug 19, 2014 |
I'm torn on this one. I thought the overall writing of the book was ok, but I personally didn't enjoy reading it. Probably too graphic for me at this time. ( )
  Mirandalg14 | Aug 18, 2014 |
A slam poet recently said in a workshop I attended that writing tragedy is one thing, but putting tragedy into your poetry just for the sake of it is not effective. A lot of this feels as though it was tragedy for the sake of tragedy. I like Charlie. I related to him in a lot of ways. In other ways he was unbelievable and unrealistic. I am very torn on this book. It will require a bit more reflection before I can truly determine how I feel about this one... ( )
  KRaySaulis | Aug 13, 2014 |
A quietly affecting story of coming to terms with one's existence, one's past, and the implication the self has on those who surround one. ( )
  Sammugomm | Jul 31, 2014 |
This nifty little book, perhaps the closest thing to a turn-of-the-twenty-first-century Bildungsroman that’s ever been written, effectively depicts the angst of contemporary adolescence just before the advent of cell phones, social networking, and virtual ubiquity.

Charlie, our epistolary narrator, tells his story through letters written to an unnamed “friend.” There seems to be nothing unusual or unique about Charlie—he lives with his loving parents, his older sister and his older brother, who is away at college (Penn State, to be precise) playing football. He experiences the anxiety and unexpected joys typical of most ninth graders. He becomes friends with step-siblings Patrick and Samantha, who support him and love him and introduce him a wide variety of people. Charlie stumbles through his first crush, his first date, his first kiss.

Charlie also happens to be extraordinarily sensitive and unusually kind. It’s all very sweet and endearing. His acute sensitivity sometimes sparks odd behavior—a lack of communicativeness, aimless wandering, almost catatonia. It becomes clear that something very troubling is occurring beneath Charlie’s sweet demeanor. That something is ultimately revealed at the end of this poignant novel, and the source of Charlie’s underlying unease significantly alters our understanding of his adolescent tribulations.

Powerful, convincing, and genuine, “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” has earned its place alongside classics like “The Catcher in the Rye” and “To Kill a Mockingbird.” (The list of books that Charlie’s English teacher gives Charlie to read adds a clever postmodern intertextuality to the story). ( )
  jimrgill | Jul 30, 2014 |
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Epigraph
Dedication
For my family
First words
Dear Friend, I am writing to you because she said you listen and understand and didn't try to sleep with that person at that party even though you could have.
Quotations
“Charlie, we accept the love we think we deserve.”
“Not everyone has a sob story, Charlie, and even if they do, it’s no excuse.”
And I thought that all those little kids are going to grow up someday. And all those little kids are going to do the things that we do. And they will all kiss someone someday. But for now, sledding is enough. I think it would be great if sledding were always enough, but it isn’t.
Because I guess we all forget sometimes. And I think that everyone is special in their own way. I really do.
The inside jokes weren’t jokes anymore. They had become stories. Nobody brought up the bad names or the bad times. And nobody felt sad as long as we could postpone tomorrow with more nostalgia.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0671027344, Paperback)

What is most notable about this funny, touching, memorable first novel from Stephen Chbosky is the resounding accuracy with which the author captures the voice of a boy teetering on the brink of adulthood. Charlie is a freshman. And while's he's not the biggest geek in the school, he is by no means popular. He's a wallflower--shy and introspective, and intelligent beyond his years, if not very savvy in the social arts. We learn about Charlie through the letters he writes to someone of undisclosed name, age, and gender, a stylistic technique that adds to the heart-wrenching earnestness saturating this teen's story. Charlie encounters the same struggles that many kids face in high school--how to make friends, the intensity of a crush, family tensions, a first relationship, exploring sexuality, experimenting with drugs--but he must also deal with his best friend's recent suicide. Charlie's letters take on the intimate feel of a journal as he shares his day-to-day thoughts and feelings:

I walk around the school hallways and look at the people. I look at the teachers and wonder why they're here. If they like their jobs. Or us. And I wonder how smart they were when they were fifteen. Not in a mean way. In a curious way. It's like looking at all the students and wondering who's had their heart broken that day, and how they are able to cope with having three quizzes and a book report due on top of that. Or wondering who did the heart breaking. And wondering why.
With the help of a teacher who recognizes his wisdom and intuition, and his two friends, seniors Samantha and Patrick, Charlie mostly manages to avoid the depression he feels creeping up like kudzu. When it all becomes too much, after a shocking realization about his beloved late Aunt Helen, Charlie retreats from reality for awhile. But he makes it back in due time, ready to face his sophomore year and all that it may bring. Charlie, sincerely searching for that feeling of "being infinite," is a kindred spirit to the generation that's been slapped with the label X. --Brangien Davis

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:00:35 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

A coming of age novel about Charlie, a freshman in high school who is a wallflower, shy and introspective, and very intelligent. He deals with the usual teen problems, but also with the suicide of his best friend.

(summary from another edition)

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