The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Stephen Chbosky, Author MTV Books $14 (256p) ISBN 978-0-671-02734-6
A trite coming-of-age novel that could easily appeal to a YA readership, filmmaker Chbosky's debut broadcasts its intentions with the publisher's announcement that ads will run on MTV. Charlie, the wallflower of the title, goes through a veritable bath of bathos in his 10th grade year, 1991. The novel is formatted as a series of letters to an unnamed ""friend,"" the first of which reveals the suicide of Charlie's pal Michael. Charlie's response--valid enough--is to cry. The crying soon gets out of hand, though--in subsequent letters, his father, his aunt, his sister and his sister's boyfriend all become lachrymose. Charlie has the usual dire adolescent problems--sex, drugs, the thuggish football team--and they perplex him in the usual teen TV ways. He hangs out with a group of seniors, among whom are Patrick and Samantha. Patrick is gay, and Charlie learns about gay. Sam is pretty, and Charlie learns about heartbreak. Sam is, alas, going out with Craig. Charlie goes out with the uppity Mary Elizabeth. Patrick goes with Brad but breaks up with him when Brad's father discovers their relationship. Into these standard teenage issues Chbosky infuses a droning insistence on Charlie's supersensitive disposition. Charlie's English teacher and others have a disconcerting tendency to rhapsodize over Charlie's giftedness, which seems to consist of Charlie's unquestioning assimilation of the teacher's taste in books. In the end we learn the root of Charlie's psychological problems, and we confront, with him, the coming rigors of 11th grade, ever hopeful that he'll find a suitable girlfriend and increase his vocabulary. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/01/1999
Release date: 02/01/1999
Show other formats
FORMATS
Prebound-Other - 978-0-606-18378-9
Prebound-Glued - 213 pages - 978-1-60686-308-4
Paperback - 312 pages - 978-89-6167-020-3
Ebook - 240 pages - 978-1-4711-0416-9
Prebound-Glued - 213 pages - 978-0-613-23752-9
Paperback - 231 pages - 978-1-4711-1614-8
Paperback - 255 pages - 978-986-185-440-3
Ebook - 224 pages - 978-1-4391-2243-3
Compact Disc - 978-1-4193-8724-1
Hardcover - 213 pages - 978-1-4516-9620-2
Paperback - 224 pages
Hardcover - 1 pages - 978-1-84782-970-2
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.