The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a nice book for teenagers above fifteen years of age. It describes various aspects of life which these young children might correlate with their own lives. This novel was written by Stephen Chbosky, an American author and was published on 1st February 1999 by Pocket Books publishers. It is a kind of coming-of-age story also called novel of formation or novel of education.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower is written in an epistolary format. It is in a first-person narrative by the protagonist named Charlie. Charlie is a high school boy and the novel goes on by Charlie writing letters to a stranger. Charlie is an introvert and shy boy and is called a wallflower. He is quite emotional and sheds tears easily. The book deals with all the things a person might face in his life; sometimes good and sometimes bad. Charlie belongs to a middle-class family and he wants to be an author when he grows up. Initially, he does not have any friends in high school, but slowly he befriends Patrick and Sam. Charlie further falls in love with Sam and is unable to recover from it. Charlie also has an elder sister who has a disturbing boyfriend. Slowly the brother-sister relationship is seen deteriorating and despite her parent’s’ resentment, Charlie’s sister continues to meet her boyfriend until one day she gets pregnant and Charlie helps her out of the mess. Charlie is seen experimenting with everything possible out there and getting stuck in many instances.
The novel received critical acclaim after the release of the adapted film in the year 2012.
The author has beautifully captured all the emotions in this novel. Though there were mixed reviews about the content of the book when it was released, it found its way to The New York Times Bestseller list. Many readers or parents might find the content of the book to be in the sexual line and explicit and therefore this book is suitable for young adults. To be frank, the author has just given an account of what happens in reality. He has described every single dimension that a person might explore due to curiosity and the consequences he might face. In other words, it can also be called a lesson that what happens when we do so and also for parents and teachers to teach their children about the problems that can come up in their lives during adolescence.