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Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
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Flowers for Algernon (1966)

by Daniel Keyes

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
9,265236323 (4.09)1 / 338
  1. 61
    The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon (infiniteletters)
    infiniteletters: Charlie is definitely not like Lou, true. But their experiences and perspectives have the same mental effect on readers.
  2. 31
    Awakenings by Oliver Sacks (Mumugrrl)
  3. 20
    Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck (shesinplainview, sturlington)
  4. 10
    I Am the Cheese by Robert Cormier (angelofmusic_81)
  5. 00
    Mixtape for the Apocalypse by Jemiah Jefferson (kiparsky)
    kiparsky: Similar narrative structure used for a similar purpose, and both are brilliant and heartbreaking books.
  6. 00
    After Many a Summer Dies the Swan by Aldous Huxley (Jarandel)
    Jarandel: Similar introduction of a speculative/fantastical premise as a device for observing and criticizing the writer's present reality.
  7. 77
    The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon (unlucky)
  8. 11
    Camp Concentration by Thomas M. Disch (aulsmith)
    aulsmith: Same theme of experimental intelligence enhancement. Disch's experimenters are much more sinister, and his experimental subjects much more intelligent.
  9. 01
    Oversite by Maureen F. McHugh (aulsmith)
    aulsmith: A short story by Maureen McHugh about an experimental treatment for Alzheimer's that looks at the effect of loss and gain of mental functioning from a bystander's point-of-view.
  10. 24
    The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck (Patangel)
  11. 04
    My Teacher Fried My Brains by Bruce Coville (infiniteletters)
    infiniteletters: More humor, less drama, but a similar effect in the end.
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English (225)  French (4)  Tagalog (1)  Spanish (1)  Finnish (1)  German (1)  All languages (233)
Showing 1-5 of 225 (next | show all)
human, oh so human! ( )
  Gerardlionel | Apr 2, 2016 |
Pretty short and poignant. ( )
  ndpmcIntosh | Mar 21, 2016 |
I couldn't get into this book. It took a lot for me to get halfway through. I'm not sure if it was because I had just finished a semester and the ambition to read something so serious just wasn't there. I might give it a try another time. ( )
  welkeral | Mar 20, 2016 |
This book was about a man named Charly and Algernon a mouse used to run the same test as Charly did. Charly would go to a school to learn how to spell and write, his teacher was a lady named Ms. Kinan. Ms. Kinan realized that Charly wasn't learning as much as the others, so Ms. Kinan met Charly at the clinic for some testing. Ms. Kinan tested Charly by showing him a picture of a family. Charly was told to make a story out of it, but Charly said he couldn't make up a story about a family he doesn't know because that would be a lie and Charly doesn't like to lie. Then Ms. Kinan showed him a picture which he thought looked like ink blots. Ms. Kinan had told him to tell her what picture he sees, but Charly doesn't see a picture he only sees an ink blot. Ms. Kinan told him that there was hidden pictures in the ink blot and that other people saw pictures, but Charly didn't see anything. Charly was told to use his imagination and he said he saw something someone spilt. When the doctors saw what he needed help with they told him to do the same test the mouse was doing at the same time, a maze. When they started Algernon always won, but Charly wanted to win so he didn't quit. One day Ms. Kinan taught him more important things and he began to understand. Ms. Kinan had asked Charly if he had friends and Charly said yes and told her what they did and told him to do. When Ms. Kinan heard that she told Charly she had to use the bathroom because something was in her eye, but Ms. Kinan was actually crying because Charly didn't know they were making fun of him, but Ms. Kinan did. When Charly began to learn his intelligence became really high that he read more than what Ms. Kinan read. Soon Ms. Kinan and Charly fall in love. One day Charly went to go see Algernon because its been awhile, but Algernon bit him and even though the doctors didn't tell him what was happening Charly knew it was going to happen to him. One of the doctors just told Charly that Algernon has been acting up, and Charly knew soon it would also happen to him because they ran the same test on Algernon and Charly. When Charly realized what was happening to Algernon he wanted to be left alone because Algernon was like Charly's best friend and he knew the same thing would happen to him. A few days later Algernon dies and Charly knew he was going to die soon too, so he didn't want anyone to bother him, not even Ms. Kinan. One day Charly's writing and spelling started going back to how it was in the beginning, bad. In Charly's progress report he said that he couldn't read anymore or understand big words he understood before. Then Charly wrote a note to Ms. Kinan saying that he was going to run far away where no one would find him.

I thought this book was interesting because it was talking about confidence and learning. In this book Charly never gave up trying to be smart because he knew he could do it. Then a few months later he became smart. While Charly was smart he realized that what was happening to Algernon would also happen to him. I gave this book a 4 star because i liked how it explained what Charly was doing and how far he got with his intelligence. Even though Charly felt ilk the couldn't do it he never quitted. This book was also very interesting because in the book it talked about how Charly had increased his intelligence by learning. I thought my rate for this book was pretty consistent because I really liked the book and how it was told. ( )
  hienh.b3 | Mar 17, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 225 (next | show all)
[Keyes] has taken the obvious, treated it in a most obvious fashion, and succeeded in creating a tale that is suspenseful and touching - all in modest degree, but it is enough.
added by Shortride | editThe New York Times, Eliot Fremont-Smith (pay site) (Mar 7, 1966)
 

» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Daniel Keyesprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Barroso, PazTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Delessert, EtienneIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Etienne, DelessertIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gallet, Georges HilaireTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Leek, JanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moore, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Paz, BarrosoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pekkanen, HilkkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Podaný, RichardTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Powers, RichardIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rabkin, Eric S.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Santos, DomingoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Szepessy, GyörgyTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Woodman, JeffNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Anyone who has common sense will remember that the bewilderments of the eyes are of two kinds, and arise from two causes, either from coming out of the light or from going into the light, which is true of the mind's eye, quite as much as of the bodily eye; and he who remembers this when he sees anyone whose vision is perplexed and weak, will not be to (sic) ready to laugh; he will first ask whether that soul of man has come out of the brighter life, and is unable to see because unaccustomed to the dark, or having turned from drakness to the day is dazzled by excess of light. And he will count the one happy in his condition and state of being, and he will pity the other; or, if he have a mind to laugh at the soul which comes from below into the light, there will be more reason in this than in the laugh which greets him who returns from above out of the light into the den. Plato, The Republic
Dedication
For my mother And in memory of my father
First words
Dr Strauss says I shoud rite down what I think and remembir and evrey thing that happins to me from now on.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This is the full length novel based on the short story. Please do not combine the two.
Publisher's editors
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Haiku summary
What if your dream to

get smart came true, but then you

knew you'd lose it all?

(legallypuzzled)

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0156030306, Paperback)

Daniel Keyes wrote little SF but is highly regarded for one classic, Flowers for Algernon. As a 1959 novella it won a Hugo Award; the 1966 novel-length expansion won a Nebula. The Oscar-winning movie adaptation Charly (1968) also spawned a 1980 Broadway musical.

Following his doctor's instructions, engaging simpleton Charlie Gordon tells his own story in semi-literate "progris riports." He dimly wants to better himself, but with an IQ of 68 can't even beat the laboratory mouse Algernon at maze-solving:

I dint feel bad because I watched Algernon and I lernd how to finish the amaze even if it takes me along time.

I dint know mice were so smart.

Algernon is extra-clever thanks to an experimental brain operation so far tried only on animals. Charlie eagerly volunteers as the first human subject. After frustrating delays and agonies of concentration, the effects begin to show and the reports steadily improve: "Punctuation, is? fun!" But getting smarter brings cruel shocks, as Charlie realizes that his merry "friends" at the bakery where he sweeps the floor have all along been laughing at him, never with him. The IQ rise continues, taking him steadily past the human average to genius level and beyond, until he's as intellectually alone as the old, foolish Charlie ever was--and now painfully aware of it. Then, ominously, the smart mouse Algernon begins to deteriorate...

Flowers for Algernon is a timeless tear-jerker with a terrific emotional impact. --David Langford

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:21 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

From the Publisher: With more than five million copies sold, Flowers for Algernon is the beloved, classic story of a mentally disabled man whose experimental quest for intelligence mirrors that of Algernon, an extraordinary lab mouse. In poignant diary entries, Charlie tells how a brain operation increases his IQ and changes his life. As the experimental procedure takes effect, Charlie's intelligence expands until it surpasses that of the doctors who engineered his metamorphosis. The experiment seems to be a scientific breakthrough of paramount importance-until Algernon begins his sudden, unexpected deterioration. Will the same happen to Charlie? An American classic that inspired the award-winning movie Charly.… (more)

» see all 8 descriptions

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