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 #VelshiBannedBookClub: “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky

09:39

“The Perks of Being a Wallflower” honestly grapples with adolescent anguish, the numbing pain of a close death, finding yourself amongst pressure to confirm, and the generational toll that sexual abuse within a family takes. But, at its core, it is a story about the power of friendship. The themes the book addresses are dark and heavy, but it doesn’t read that way. “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” is sweet and poignant. That is high school. That is adolescence. The painful meeting of adulthood, lingering childhood naivety, and teenage feelings. It is not easy to strike that note, right at the crossroads of those three things, but author Stephen Chbosky does again and again. The result is a book that is so specific in its story, its frequent ‘90s cultural references, and its nuanced characters that it feels infinitely universal. This book’s power is in its ability to reach so many. “To me, it’s all about the next kid,” says Chbosky. “It literally is a matter of life and death and to take it that seriously.”