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    Entries in Stephen Chbosky (1)

    Monday
    May312010

    A Low Brow Review of The Perks of Being a Wallflower

    WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW! I love Stephen Chbosky's first novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower (1999). I read it on the heels of The Catcher in the Rye (You can read my Non-Review of Catcher here). Perfect. Because not only does it remind me very much of Catcher, and not only does a USA Today reviewer compare it to Catcher, but the main character, Charlie, reads and discusses Catcher himself. And To Kill a Mockingbird, and Fountainhead, and The Great Gatsby, and a bunch of other books.

    Tim Curry as Dr. Frankenfurter

    But the parts I liked THE BEST were the Friday nights they dressed up in lingerie and acted out the parts in The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I mean, Charlie in a gold swimsuit and a feather boa? Hysterical. I'm kind of low brow like that.

    Speaking of which, I kinda hate to mention how much I love The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I mean, I've seen it about a million times, the first time when I was a freshman at Texas A&M University in 19--um, that's not important. Anyway, I saw the movie at The Alabama Theater in Houston at midnight once when that dude that plays the creepy butler showed up in tight, gold lame pants. Or was it leopard skin? Anyway, it was a moment. I even own both the DVD and the soundtrack. The reason I hate to mention this is that on page 104 of Wallflower, Charlie's friend Bob says how parents don't want to let go of their youth and how it kills them when they can't relate to something. Hey, Bob, I resemble that remark!

    Come to think of it, comparing The Perks of Being a Wallflower to The Catcher in the Rye would also make the Wallflower characters really mad. According to Craig (still page 104), comparing these two novels discredits them, diminishes the personal voices in each. Hmph. That's deep. Still, Wallflower does remind me of Catcher, and making connections gives readers like me a hook to hang the story on, so to speak, so, um, my apologies to the author and cast of Wallflower, but seriously, you remind me A LOT of The Catcher in the Rye. And that's not EXACTLY a comparison.

    Did I mention that The Perks of Being a Wallflower is #3 on ALA's 2009 Top Ten Hit List? Ha! The reasons: homosexuality, sexually explicit, anti-family, offensive language, religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group, drugs, suicide. Anti-family? That part really kills me. Charlie's family is awesome, even Aunt Helen, despite her skeletons which pretty much constitute the underpinnings of the entire story. Anyway, thanks repressed people for bringing this novel to my attention. I have an 8th grader who is going to love this book!

    [tweetmeme source="JanetTrumble" only_single=false]I wonder why they cut off the bottoms of the letters on Stephen Chbosky's name on the cover? I'm sure that means something. His photo in the back is kinda cute too. I wonder how he'd look in a corset. Um, kidding :)