The Perks of Being A Wallflower

The Perks of Being A Wallflower

Book - 1999
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This coming of age novel is told in a series of letters to an unknown correspondent, and reveals the life of Charlie, a freshman in high school who is a wallflower, shy and introspective, and very intelligent. He tells the story of what it's like to grow up in high school. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it puts him on a strange course through uncharted territory in a world of first dates and mixed tapes, family dramas and new friends, and sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Publisher: New York : Pocket Books, c1999
ISBN: 9780671027346
Characteristics: 213 p. ; 18 cm


From Library Staff

Charlie is a freshman. He's a wallflower--shy and introspective, and intelligent beyond his years, if not very savvy in the social arts. We learn about Charlie through the letters he writes to someone of undisclosed name, age, and gender. Charlie's letters take on the intimate feel of a journal ... Read More »

213 p. (Gr 9-12) Fifteen year old Charlie writes a series of letters detailing his thoughts and emotions after the suicide of his best friend.

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Jul 20, 2017

Amazing read. Something I would suggest to anyone. I especially liked the character Aunt Helen who at the same time fascinated me and surprised me.

May 22, 2017

Teenage coming of age novel about a boy and the older kids around him who teach him the facts of life told by the boys letters written to no one in particular similar to journal. Nice read. Somehow it was on my list of thrillers; I decided to read it anyway.

Feb 09, 2017

This bittersweet story stars Charlie as he is writing letters to someone we never meet. The letters are all about his first year in high school and about his attempts to take a teacher's advice and "participate" rather than just be an observer.

Charlie is such a sweet boy and you can't help but root for him in this coming of age story. Would only recommend for older teenagers as there are many sexual situations throughout the story.

Feb 02, 2017

One of my favourite books as a teenager, I feel this book captures the feeling of adolescence in a beautiful and emotionally raw way. It's never dry. It's loaded with pop culture references. It's not about pretty or perfect people. It's about the reality of being a teen in a sometimes topsy-turvy world. Told from the perspective of a loner teenage boy who starts to find some new friends in high school, THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER doesn't shy away from the harsh topics but rather shows them through the eyes of a rather innocent adolescent who can't make heads nor tails of what's happening to him and around him. This point of view is non-judgmental, leaving you to have your own views and navigate through the story yourself. (And, for viewers of the movie, know that the author of the book directed the film. Stephen Chbosky is truly talented and devoted to this story being told right.) Personally I loved every bit of it. I've recommended it to countless others and will continue to do so.

JCLRitaG Jan 19, 2017

How did I miss this for nearly 20 years? Guess I missed the entire culture of the 80's as I was having children. Great story! ...strikingly similar to high school in the 60's.

Dec 11, 2016

I didn't love this like I wanted to love this. It felt so cliche. Perhaps because it's a bit of an older title and it took me so long to finally read this, I've read too many other stories that are fairly similar. Perhaps I should consider this more of a groundbreaking book because it probably was when it first came out. But alas, I read this 17 years too late and for that, I missed out on thinking this book was incredible. Regardless, it's still a decent book and I can appreciate it for what it is...and I'll most likely watch the music because Emma Watson, amiright?

Dec 08, 2016

I really enjoyed this book, and can't wait to watch the movie to see if it follows the story.

Nov 20, 2016

Absolultely Discusting.
A horrible book. Everyone was saying "Read this!! It's great!!" "OHMYGOSH! THIS IS A CLASSIC!" No. It was gross, boring, and I hated it.

Nov 02, 2016

A book for gentle souls. Also, one of the very few instances where movie lived up to the book. It's good book for teens!

Oct 25, 2016

Towards the end of the book, I felt kind of dragged along when reading it. Overall, I would say this book should be targeted towards older teens because there were quite a few parts that I do not think should be for anyone younger than sixteen years of age. It speaks of many issues that mostly teens go through, and I would like to think that the audience is American and not as much Canadian. From my experiences, some things in this book do not happen as commonly in our day to day lives. Perhaps they do, and I am simply ignorant to them; but I'd like to think otherwise. In a way, Charlie is relatable, but not so in others. Tip: try to relate to him to understand the book a bit better, but don't dwell on the issues or else be dragged under. 3/5 stars
- @Siri of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

The Perks Of Being A Wallflower is an incredibly well written novel offering insight towards sexual assault and the reactions one can have, as well as teen life. The feelings evoked and described in the book are raw and heart wrenching. Nothing is written without meaning. There is some media that everyone should consume, and The Perks Of Being A Wallflower is one. This book is one the most enjoyable and invigorating books I've ever read. I would highly recommend this book to any teen youth looking for a book filled with emotion and love that will stick with you for a long time, and requires some critical thinking to really understand and appreciate. To me, The Perks Of Being A Wallflower is a 5/5 book.
- @chillchillchill of the Teen Review Board of the Hamilton Public Library

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Add Age Suitability

Apr 19, 2017

JaceToews thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

RobertELPL Mar 04, 2017

RobertELPL thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

Feb 27, 2017

fadisi thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Aug 27, 2016

awebster92 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

brinda2003 Jul 23, 2016

brinda2003 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

Jun 28, 2016

ilovecats2003 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Jun 06, 2016

Bookcat18 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

Aug 25, 2015

VV12 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

Jul 19, 2015

Elmswimmer419 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

RegeniaS Jul 18, 2014

RegeniaS thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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Add a Quote

Aug 18, 2015

"So, I guess we are who we are for a lot of reasons. And maybe we'll never know most of them. But even if we don't have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. We can still do things. And we can try to feel okay about them."

Aug 18, 2015

"She was sad, though. But it was a hopeful kind of sad. The kind of sad that just takes time."

Aug 18, 2015

"I just want you to know that you're very special... and the only reason I'm telling you is that I don't know if anyone else ever has."

Jul 08, 2015

So, if this does end up being my last letter, please believe that things are good with me, and even when they're not, they will be soon enough.
And I will believe the same about you.
Charlie (pg.213)

thisgrrlreads Nov 19, 2013

“Dear friend, I do not like high school. The cafeteria is called the ‘Nutrition Center,’ which is strange.” (page 6)

Elizabeth Neilson
Aug 09, 2013

"In that moment we were infinite"

Aug 02, 2013

"We accept the love we think we deserve"

DebAK Jul 14, 2013

[…] she grabbed his penis with her hands and started moving it. […] the boy pushed the girl's head down, and she started to kiss his penis. [...] she stopped crying because he put his penis in her mouth. [...]

DebAK Jul 14, 2013

And Patrick made this fake coupon advertising a free “bl*w job” for anyone who buys a Smiley cookie at the Big Boy.

Jul 13, 2013

Love always, Charlie

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Add Notices

Jun 18, 2014

Violence: Teens get into fights multiple times.

Jun 18, 2014

Frightening or Intense Scenes: There is a rape scene.

Jun 18, 2014

Sexual Content: Teens get initimate fairly frequently.

BookWormChelly Jul 08, 2013

Sexual Content: oral sex.

ecrl Feb 02, 2013

Sexual Content: Oral sex among teens!

bookgeek101 Dec 26, 2012

Other: Patrick is gay.

bookgeek101 Dec 26, 2012

Frightening or Intense Scenes: The ending is really intense and some parts in between.

bookgeek101 Dec 26, 2012

Sexual Content: Quite a bit of this. They talk about it and a tiny bit of Charlie experiencing it (but because he is writing a letter, it isn't in extreme detail or anything).

bookgeek101 Dec 26, 2012

Violence: One scene where they get in a fight at school.

bookgeek101 Dec 26, 2012

Coarse Language: They are in high school, so there is ALOT of swearing.

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Add a Summary

janellejordan Jul 12, 2015

goes on a journey to show how childhood can really effect a person and how friends can get someone out of any situation.

Jul 08, 2015

Charlie has just lost his best friend and is now starting high school with no friends. Enter Sam and Patrick as they integrate Charlie into their friend group and take him on wild adventures. Follow Charlie as he starts to heal and have the best experiences of his life while still figuring out how he feels

Aug 02, 2013

Written in the format of a diary we are guided through Charlie's freshman year of high school. Where he experiences his first love and first taste of partying and his mission of finding him self.

destiny1218 Jul 09, 2013

a wonderful coming of age book that tells the tale of a young boy experiencing high school and finding himself along with a few new friends.

BookWormChelly Jul 08, 2013

A young man named Charlie who is writing his life through letters to an anonymous person of his high school experience.

Jun 11, 2013

a teenage freshman tells us his first year of high school through letters

Oct 23, 2012

After learning of the suicide of another student, "Charlie" writes letters to ??? and tells us about his life as a lonely HS freshman. Sadness, loss and past mental health issues. He makes friends, learns about smoking cigarettes, spliffs, and LSD. Drinks and eats fast food. He experiments with girls and experiences kissing one boy and always loves Sam(antha), his good friend. He reads awesome books and tells us about them and has ups and downs with friends.

Saulia Jul 06, 2012

Charlie, the main character, writes letters to an unnamed person, and this is how his story is told. It talks about how he had trouble fitting in, until he met Sam - whom he fell in love with, and Patrick. These two become his best friends, and also his English teacher provides him with a list of books to read, making him feel more accepted.

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 07, 2012

this talks bout how a boy named chrlie is introduced of the world of drugs and luv and goes with his friends for help!!!!!!!

Apr 20, 2010

A young boy confides in you as a reader anonymously sharing his life through a series of letters. He is trying to find his place in the world.

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