Woah. So let me start this off by saying I have never finished a book so fast in my life. I finished it in a few hours– I literally couldn’t put it down. I think what really drew me into this book was they way it was written. The book is a compilation of letters written by the main character Charlie. He speaks directly to you, and brings you into the story. These letters describe his first year in High School and the struggles that come with it as well as memories of his Aunt and best friend.
This story really hit close to home and at times I was left with a lump in my throat. You easily become so attached to the characters and I was so eager to know what ill happen next. It at first seems like such a simplistic high school novel, but it has so much depth to it.
The most important message I took away from this book is to not compare yourself with others. It is a recurring theme through the book and I think this quote pretty much sums it all up:
“I think that if I ever have kids, and they are upset, I won’t tell them that people are starving in China or anything like that because it wouldn’t change the fact that they were upset. And even if somebody else has it much worse, that doesn’t really change the fact that you have what you have.”
This is such an important lesson that I wish I was raised with and that more people realized to be true. Growing up I always compared my struggles to what other people were going through, and believed that I didn’t have the right to get upset or complain or cry because other people have it much worse. I think this book helped me realize that we have to be focused on our own lives and well being and to “really be there”. And I’ll leave this review with one last quote that I really enjoyed:
“I would die for you, but I won’t live for you.”