Book Review: The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Title: The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Author: Stephen Chbosky

Series: ---

Genres: Realistic Fiction, Contemporary, Coming of Age, Classics

Publication/Year: MTV Books • 2012

Page Numbers: 224

Synopsis from Goodreads:
"Standing on the fringes of life offers a unique perspective…but there comes a time to see what it looks like from the dance floor.Since its publication, Stephen Chbosky’s haunting debut novel has received critical acclaim, provoked discussion and debate, grown into a cult phenomenon with over two million copies in print, spent over six months at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list, and inspired a major motion picture.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a story about what it’s like to travel that strange course through the uncharted territory of high school. The world of first dates, family dramas, and new friends. Of sex, drugs, andThe Rocky Horror Picture Show. Of those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up."
My Rating★★★.5 

Quote(s) I Like:
"...sometimes people use thought to not participate in life." - Bill

"...we accept the love we think we deserve" - Bill

"I usually walk home from school because it makes me feel like I've earned it. What I mean is that I want to be able to tell my kids that I walked to school like my grandpa did the 'old days.'" - Charlie

My Thoughts:
I don't even know where to begin. I did not love the book, but I didn't hate it. I've been stuck between giving this book 3 stars and 4 stars. It just wasn't that good to me. The writing style was pretty interesting, the first part definitely made me giggle every now and then but as I moved on to part two of the story I got bored and part three didn't grasp my attention until the last few entries written.

Charlie's character was really good. I loved that he grew over the course of this freshman year by hanging out with seniors and his life experiences with his family was intriguing.

This book definitely does delve into the experience of a public high school from the POV of a nervous guy. All the characters: Patrick, Sam, Charlie's sister, Bill the teacher, Mary Elizabeth -- they were all great, but for some reason the book just did not grasp my attention after the first part.

I even had to stop reading just to watch the movie (which I loved more than the book) just to get me interested in finishing the book.


- Spoiler Alert -
Charlie's sister definitely pissed me off because she fell more in love with her boyfriend after he slapped her. What type of mess it that? I feel bad that females think the love they get is the love they deserve. I wish she would have realized sooner that she deserved much more than him, but thankfully her character grew towards the end.

I love Bill, Charlie's teacher, because he not only gave Charlie great literary books to read, but also gave him amazing advice to not just sit on the sideline and watch people enjoy life. He told Charlie to go out and participate in life as well. Such a great teacher! We need more like him in public schools nowadays.

Patrick and Brad ... their relationship was cute, but the fact that Brad hid it from his friends and was embarrassed by getting beat from his father pissed me off. He did nothing when his friends beat up Patrick during lunch, but thankfully Charlie jumped in. It sad how men have to be in the closet because of the image they want to portray. Really felt that in my heart during this part.

Aunt Helen...what can I say about her? Charlie tortured himself because he felt like he killed her, but what she did to him -- I think she molested him -- was totally wrong. I felt bad that Charlie had the memories of that PLUS feeling like her death was his fault. I definitely shed a few tears.

I love that he went to get help at a hospital and actually allowed them to help him out. I also love that Sam and him finally got together even after Sam left for college. They are such a cute couple!

Overall Conclusion:
Would I recommend it? Maybe, depending on the person. But I would say watch the movie first.

Have you read this book?

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