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The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp

The Spectacular Now

by Tim Tharp

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4214025,173 (3.5)8

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Showing 1-5 of 40 (next | show all)
Eh, it was okay.

I just didn't care. Sutter was a bit of a jerk, but you could see why, but it never really mattered that you could see why. Amy was just a wet noodle. She just goes from a complete wet noodle to a wet noodle who relies on her boyfriend to fix all her problems. Sutter's friend is also a jerk and his girlfriend Beth is annoying. Sutter's ex-girlfriend Cassidy is probably the best thing about this book and I wish the book had been about her instead of stupid Sutter.

And on and on and on.

There was some nice writing, I guess. But I felt like I'd have been better off rereading The Catcher in the Rye. Holden's also a jerk, you know, but the writing was much better. ( )
  thebookmagpie | Jul 14, 2015 |
This was a book I bought from the "buy 2 get 1free" table at Barnes and Noble, i found two I wanted easily but finding a third was next to impossible and I settled on this. It is obviously a very quick read about a teenage screwup and drunk who has a unique life perspective. not as predictable as many books in this genre, but not a whole lot of surprises either. ( )
  zmagic69 | Apr 7, 2015 |
Not sure what the point of this book was. A few cute moments but not nearly enough. ( )
  busyreadin | Mar 9, 2015 |
Sutter Keely is the life of the party at his high school: he never really gets into any big trouble, and he's not one to think to hard about consequences before jumping in and loving life. Yeah, maybe he carries a flask of whisky, but he's not an actual drunk. When he and his girlfriend Cassidy break up, his life takes a spin and he suddenly meets Aimee Finecky, who is so not his type.

The book dates itself with references to email and MySpace, but it captures the feeling of high school perfectly which makes it perfect and maddening at the same time. Much like its main character. Though Sutter most assuredly has his problems and is not the most reliable of narrators, I really liked him and rooted for him all the way. ( )
  bell7 | Dec 27, 2014 |

“The Spectacular Now” by Tim Tharp is a highly entertaining and surprisingly insightful story of a teenage alcoholic. A high school senior Sutter Keely is exactly a person you want to have at your party - he is hilarious, spontaneous and charming. Although an algebra teacher is giving him a hard time, his girlfriend wants to break up and his relationships with his parents are far away from perfect, nothing can bring Sutter down because he and his best friend whiskey don’t worry about the past or the future, they live in the spectacular now. One morning after one of such spectacular nows Sutter wakes up on the lawn in an unfamiliar neighborhood. That’s where he meets Aimee, a mousy nerd whose self-confidence is practically nonexistent. But fear not, Sutterman with his spiked 7UP is here to change Aimee for better… or for worse.


1) On the story:

“The Spectacular Now” is hilarious and fast-moving. The whole story is told from Sutter’s perspective and it feels like you are actually in his head. I was also pleasantly surprised by the depth of this book because I was kind of expecting something like “A Walk to Remember” by Nicholas Sparks (you know, one of those unlikely romances with a heartbreaking ending). The ending is indeed heartbreaking, but absolutely not what I was predicting. I didn’t really like the ending though because it is quite depressing and hopeless. However, it is actually the ending that makes this book so good, partly because it is so heartrending and partly because it is so realistic.

Relatable and multidimensional characters are another reason why the whole story is so deeply moving. I could really understand all personages and their motives. For example, I really cared about Sutter and found myself rooting for him rather than judging him. Just like in real life, in this story nothing is simply black or white, there are no absolute heroes nor villains.

2) On writing:

Tharp’s writing is incredibly engaging and flows effortlessly. None of the dialogues feel forced, none of the language, which is packed with teen slang, sounds artificial. Although the story is told from the first person’s perspective, other characters are very well developed. Finally, the message is loud and clear but the author doesn’t judge or preach; he just invites us to Sutter’s world and leaves us here to explore, think and feel on our own.

VERDICT: 4 out of 5

The story reads like a breeze, but the message is harrowing and it will haunt you long after you finish the book. It’s a great read for both teens and adults! ( )
1 vote AgneJakubauskaite | Sep 12, 2014 |
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In the last months of high school, charismatic eighteen-year-old Sutter Keely lives in the present, staying drunk or high most of the time, but that could change when starts working to boost the self-confidence of a classmate, Aimee.

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