obaketyan (obaketyan) wrote,

Flowers for Algernon by David Keyes

I've listened "Flowers for Algernon" up to the end. It takes me three days. A great device this phone with mp3player is!
I had known the plot, so there was no surprise about Charlie becoming a retarded again. But it was painful to listen to the last chapters, I was almost crying. I had not expected the book was so sincere and moving. May be the author partly achieved it by choosing the form of reports (which is practically a diary, but written for people to read it).

Though I knew the story more or less there were some unfamiliar episodes which seemed important for me.
First of all, Charlie's mother, her desire that he would be normal (she even named her second child Norma). But the desire doesn't come from her love to her son, but from her obssession to "keep up with the Jones". When Charlie failed to live up her expectations, she punished him which affected his development badly. And still he managed to forgive her. He also forgave his sister who used to hate him.
Then Alice and their relationship. Now when I've finished, the development of their relationship seems to me logic but i couldn't predict it in detail. May be because I looked at her through Charlie's eyes, because this was His story. But I don't like her anyway.
Well, i think that the process of "getting smart" and developing emotionally (and loosing happiness as a result) is carefully and truthfully described. With the help of different means! - grammar, syntax, vocabulary. Everything is changing! That was the real pleasure to see how the author employs all these means and what an impression it makes!
But the reverse process when he starts forgetting things, and especially while he was waiting for the beginning of the process - that was so tense emotionally that didn't allow to pay special attention to linguistic means. And may be that is the strongest part of the book.
I like the plot because it's interesting, and clever and leaves some room for me to think about.
I like the language, because the author masterfully uses it, it wonderfully serves the aim to reflect the state of mind of Charlie as well as his emotions which is also important as he is growing up and developing not only mentally but emotionally as well.
I like the form of the book, I think it contributes a lot to the creation of an image.
I like the end though sad but logic.
And i like how the author depicts his characters - not flat, but round, psychologically accurate. What they feel and how they react seem motivated, explainable, understandable.

And I also like the actor narrated the book, Jeff Woodman.
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