Review The Perks of Being a Wallflower

I just finished this book. It wasn't terribly long but I ate it right up. I finished reading it last night and really loved it by the end. Some may have heard of this book, I know that its the anthem of many teenagers. I've heard many "youngsters" speak very passionately about this particular piece of work. Being on my list of books to read for nearly a year now, my brother-in-law had just finished it this last week and so I figured, why not start that one.

Disclaimer: I tend to lean towards books that are quite heavy. I remember my favorite book in high school was The Color Purple. As an adult, I have claimed the novel by Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar (about a woman who has deep depression), as my all time favorite. Though I really loved this novel, I will be first to admit that its not for everyone. This particular book may not speak to you the same way it did to me. And thats totally okay! I'm not suggesting everyone go out and read it because you really may not like it. The characters are imperfect and foolish but I found there was a lesson to be learned.

When I talk about imperfect characters, I must strongly emphasize the adult themes in this book. There are drugs, sex, language, and alcohol in it. Therefore, it may not be enjoyed by everyone. Its about a 15 year old boy who wants to know "what's wrong with him" and why he is so different. He is just starting high school and has always been perceived as awkward and strange. The young man meets new people and makes lots of foolish and inappropriate mistakes. Yet, he is very endearing, there is something so different about him than the other characters I have read about. He has an innocence, even with all of his mistakes. This book definitely tells a coming of age story. He is trying to figure himself out.

By the end of the book, you understand why things were the way they were for this young man. And even though the content was extremely heavy, the end left me with optimism and deep reflection of the importance of life. Being religious, it made me reflect on the Atonement, the Grace of God, and forgiveness.

ONE of my favorite quotes from the book:

"When I was driving home, I thought about the word “special.” And I thought the last person who said that about me was my aunt Helen. I was very grateful to have heard it again. Because I guess we all forget sometimes. And I think everyone is special in their own way. I really do."

I love the deep satisfaction of finishing a good book. This one was the kind that I will be thinking about for a few days. It makes me remember why I love literature. It can move you and make you feel things. And that, my friends, is powerful.

Happy Wednesday!


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