This coming-of-age story centers around 15-year-old introvert Charlie as they attempt to navigate the highs and lows of adolescence, self-discovery, and the people that they love. Both touchingly pure and painfully honest, Charlie recounts their first year of high school in the form of letters to an anonymous person, and through their writing, touches on subject material that many other young adult novels fail to address. Being young, being scared, being alive, beginning to try to understand how to fit into the world, are all prominent themes in this novel. As Charlie begins to find their place, perhaps their unique perspective might help you find yours as well. Content warning: this book includes substance use, abuse (taking many different forms), queerphobia, suicide, and abortion. Recommended By Anna F., Powells.com
This coming-of-age story absolutely shines. Charlie is your average teenager trying to navigate the treacherous waters of adolescence, yet he's so much more than that. Recognizing something special in Charlie, a teacher feeds him literature and tries to guide him into growth and maturity. Charlie has a bit more on his plate than he knows what to do with, however. Chbosky manages to dodge stereotypes while mining his characters for the real humanity underneath the surface. This tiny novella delivers a huge, heartwarming story. Teenage years have never seemed so poignant, nor so beautiful! Recommended By Dianah H., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Read the cult-favorite coming of age story that takes a sometimes heartbreaking, often hysterical, and always honest look at high school in all its glory. Now a major motion picture starring Logan Lerman and Emma Watson, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a funny, touching, and haunting modern classic.
The critically acclaimed debut novel from Stephen Chbosky, Perks follows observant "wallflower" Charlie as he charts a course through the strange world between adolescence and adulthood. First dates, family drama, and new friends. Sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Devastating loss, young love, and life on the fringes. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it, Charlie must learn to navigate those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up.
A #1 New York Times best seller for more than a year, an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults (2000) and Best Book for Reluctant Readers (2000), and with millions of copies in print, this novel for teen readers (or "wallflowers" of more-advanced age) will make you laugh, cry, and perhaps feel nostalgic for those moments when you, too, tiptoed onto the dance floor of life.
“Chbosky captures adolescent angst, confusion, and joy as Charlie reveals his innermost thoughts....Charlie is a likeable kid whose humor-laced trials and tribulations will please both adults and teens.” Booklist
"[It} is part of an MTV Books series that targets teen-age readers. But it is more mature than most young adult literature and can be enjoyed by older readers as well." Denise Kersten, USA Today
"Charlie develops from an observant wallflower into his own man of action....This report on his life will engage teen readers for years to come." School Library Journal
About the Author
Stephen Chbosky grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and graduated from the University of Southern California's Filmic Writing Program. His first film, The Four Corners of Nowhere, premiered at the 1995 Sundance Film Festival and went on to win Best Narrative Feature honors at the Chicago Underground Film Festival. He is the recipient of the Abraham Polonsky Screenwriting Award for his screenplay Everything Divided as well as a participant in the Sundance Institute's filmmakers' lab for his current project, Fingernails and Smooth Skin. Chbosky lives in New York. The Perks of Being a Wallflower is his first novel.