The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky Review

The Perks of Being a Wallflower Book Cover The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Stephen Chbosky
Young Adult
MTV Books and Pocket Books
February 1st 1999

Charlie is a freshman.

And while he's not the biggest geek in the school, he is by no means popular. Shy, introspective, intelligent beyond his years yet socially awkward, he is a wallflower, caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it.

Charlie is attempting to navigate his way through uncharted territory: the world of first dates and mix tapes, family dramas and new friends; the world of sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, when all one requires is that perfect song on that perfect drive to feel infinite. But he can't stay on the sideline forever. 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.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a deeply affecting coming-of-age story that will spirit you back to those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up.



I am about to do something I haven’t done in a long time, but here it is….SPOILER WARNING for this review. Don’t read my review if you haven’t read the book. 

I have had this on my ‘to-read’ for years.  Numerous friends of mine rant on and on about how wonderful this book is. I was a little caught off guard when I realized it’s a book of letters written to what I assume is myself (the reader).  I have never read a book written in that style; I’ve read books with letters or texts in the story, but the whole book is a bit different. I went into this book expecting to love it and I didn’t. I didn’t even kind of like it. Now, I know this is blasphemy to so many people who adored this book when they were growing up. I urge you to re-read it. Be warned again that ahead will have spoilers.

oh Charlie, Charlie, Charlie, what can you say about charlie?

  1.  He sounds like a child. I don’t mean he sounds like a freshman, I mean he sounds like a 5-year-old. From the first page, I was rolling my eyes at his ‘innocence’. It was too much.
  2.  He lets everyone in his life abuse him to some shitty extremes. Here are a few examples just from his ‘friends’ – drugging him, molesting him, treating him like trash until he could do something for them, and through all of this he thought his sister was making bad choices (she was).  Patrick and Sam were the WORST kind of friends.
  3. His Family SUCKS. His parents don’t hug him or tell him they love him even though they know he isn’t mentally stable! Not to mention the fact he practically worshiped his aunt and it turns out she was molesting him too! Of course, they don’t even discuss that until the LAST FEW PAGES.
  4. His best friend killed himself but that’s not even part of the story really. He didn’t really care about that one.

He was just an all around annoying and weak character. There was no character building, just non-stop drama. It got to the point I just wanted to quit the book and I almost never do that. I also never put spoilers in my review but here we are with my first 1-star review in a long time!  Just another teen book that glamorizes abusers and being abused. In my opinion, it was very disappointing. I’m not sure why it’s so popular.

I’m a geek blogger, mom, a wife, and a reader. My family and I are currently living in the beautiful state of Colorado. I started my blog after I landed myself in the hospital for multiple pulmonary embolisms. It took over a year to diagnose me with lupus among other things. It’s been a long journey but I wouldn’t change it for the world. I read all genres and I write about anything I feel like; From my issues with Lupus/RA/pulmonary embolisms to what is going on in the book world. Every day is a new adventure!
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2 thoughts on “The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky Review

  1. It’s always rough having to write a one star review but you have to remain true to yourself and the site. Haven’t read Perks…, but really don’t think I will now.

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