*Trigger warning: the book about to be reviewed features sensitive themes like alcohol, drugs, and sexual abuse.*
“So, this is my life. And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I’m still trying to figure out how that could be.”
The Perks Of Being A Wallflower, is a coming-of-age story about a sixteen-year-old boy named Charlie, who throughout a set of letters that he starts writing the night before his first day of freshman year, he takes us to his journey of his first year of highschool, as he tries to “participate” something that he had been avoiding all his life. And how, once he does, he meets friends that change him forever, as enters this whole new world of sex, drugs, good music, mind-opening books, feeling infinite, and other perks.
“You´re a Wallflower.”
“You see things,
You keep quiet about them,
and you understand.”
I first read this book when I was about twelve and, in my country, I was just starting high school, not a great experience, to say the least. People around me were changing, pretending to be older than they were, my friends suddenly didn´t want to talk about the same things anymore, the fact that I enjoyed books immediatly made me a “nerd” and all the girls were busy trying to make boys notice them, and the boys were far too busy trying to impress the girls to even make friends with them. Mean professors. Demanding schedules. Not enough time or space to breathe.
But then, this book came along, and it changed everything.
Some of you, who might have read it, might say that I was far too young to read the book (given that it features themes like sex, drugs, and alcohol) but for me, it came to me just in the right time. It helped me understand a little bit better what was happening around me, and that I was not wrong or damaged for being an outsider, I just had to find the right people who would understand.
I first read The Perks Of Being A Wallflower when I was twelve years-old and it changed me in ways I cannot even begin to describe and it taught me so many things. I have read it seven times ever since.
Because the reason that this is my favorite book, is that I never really finish learning from it. Every time I read it, I understand things that I didn´t before, the decisions the characters make, how they act why. The thing is, that the book doesn´t change, I do and as I grow, the novel does with me.
Throughout the book, Charlie makes references to different books that his English teacher, Bill, gives him to read specially to him and there is this one part in which he talks about how he felt while reading The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand and he said this:
“It was really a great experience. It´s strange to describe a book as a really great experience but that´s kind of how it felt.”
Now when I think about reading The Perks (…) I kind of feel the same way, being inside of Charlie´s mind is a one of a kind experience, his thoughts are funny, refreshing, and sad at times, endearingly sweet and strikingly deep. I found them all very urelatable at some point but then, perhaps it´s just me.
“I hope you have a very nice life because I really thing you deserve it.”
Even if it sometimes feels like it, you are never alone, I´m rooting for you, wherever you are.
If you feel the need to talk to someone, here´s my email firstname.lastname@example.org
And if email is too old-fashioned for you, here´s my Twitter: @LettersCoffee1