Meet Charlie. An average freshman. He is neither a jock, nor a geek. He is neither unpopular or the life and soul of the party. He just is. It is the place that many people find themselves, but don’t admit to.
Stephen Chbosky’s novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a book about growing up. About trying to fit in. About finding your own way. It is about standing out for the right reasons, and about fitting in where you are most comfortable. It is The Catcher in the Rye with less of a rebel streak; The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn without a river to escape down.
The book is a fast read, and is written in the form of a series of letters written by Charlie to an unnamed reader.
These letters examines how he interacts with the other pupils at his school and his many preoccupations, particularly Sam, his perfect girl, and her boyfriend Patrick, his sister and her abortion, the first girl he dates, the doubts he has about himself and taking his part in a world where he does not know how to fit.
The novel is beautifully written, and has captured Charlie on the cusp of the moments when he feels Infinite, with his friends, the open road, the perfect song, and any number of perfect moments in front of him.