At first I thought that it was an other book very similar to "The other side of truth".
I read this book for homework last year during my summer holiday. Thus, without reading the cover, I have started reading the first paragraph. It opens with a sentence like this: "The first hullabaloo left Femi pressed against the wall like a leech". I immediately went back to the cover and I was very surprised when I read that it is a sequel of "The other side of truth".
Nevertheless it is a good book, it took me a long time to read it. After a few pages, I began to focus on Femi's multifaceted personality. In "the other side of truth", Sade had the role of being the protagonist of the situation. Although someone may think, Sade had to take some sognificative decisions so as to save her and her brother's life.
Femi and Sade are attending school but Femi is involved with a gang of other boys. These people try to persuade him to do some illegal activities. For example they make him steal from a shop once.
Nonetheless, Femi is not a bad boy, he just wants to earn some money for his family. As a matter of fact, his father cannot work in England. The immigration office does not give him the political asylum. Furthermore, Sade and Papa know nothing, because Femi keeps this fact secret but he will be in serious trouble and he will have to explain everything. After having read both books I have known that Sade is pronunced Shad-dech, with your voice rising on the second syllable. As a matter of fact, Sade is not an English name. It is a name in Yoruba, a language spoken in the west of Africa. These books are clerly related with the author's life. Indeed, Beverly Naidoo was born in South Africa on 21st May 1943 and grew up under apartheid. As a student, she began to question the apartheid regime and was later arrested for her actions as part of the resistance movement in South Africa.
In 1965 she went into exile going to England. She married another South African exile, and they have two children. This last aspect is very important, because it makes us understand why her books are often set in England.
THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER
by Stephen Chbosky
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Great, awesome, fantastic are the only words to describe this book. It is set in the 1990s and deals with a boy called Charlie. He is a fifteen-year-old guy, who has just entered his freshman year of high school when the book begins.
He is not a popular guy among his classmates, he is just a freshman who wants to find his way. But fortunately, he is not the biggest geek in the school.
During the first period of the year at the high school Charlie tries to overcome the sorrow caused by his friend's death. His friend, whose name is Michael, has committed suicide. Nevertheless, it is not the only grief that is tormenting him. When he was little his aunt Helen died in a car accident on Charlie's birthday. Charlie seems to be very grateful to his aunt, he says that she was the best person he has ever met. Charlie has also some clear memories of his birthday when Helen gave to him his presents. Charlie's birthday is on 24th December so lots of his relatives gave him one present for his birthday and for Christmas. Instead, Helen was very careful so as to buy the best present for his birthday and she always bought another present for Christmas. They were always the best presents.
The book is an epistolary novel, it is divided in four parts. Every letter commences with "Dear friend" and it always end with "Love always, Charlie". The author does not reveal the identity of the friend who Charlie is writing to. In my opinion, Charlie wants to dedicate this letters to his friend Michael.
He is quiet and withdrawn, but he is also very smart and thoughtful. As a matter of fact, his literature teacher, Bill Anderson, was very surprised and he said to Charlie that he is the best student he has ever had. He recognizes Charlie’s talent for literature, assigning him extra books to read and essays to write over the course of the year. Charlie becomes friend with Patrick and Patrick's stepsister, Sam, who integrate him into their social group. Sam and Charlie love each other but in a friendly way. Instead, Patrick is gay and he is having a close relationship with Brad, the quarterback of the football team.
This book concerns some significant themes such as love, sexuality, drugs and alcohol. In the story there are some sexual moments, that are described with lots of details. Thus, I cannot recommend this book to anyone because you need to be at least fourteen.
There are also described some extreme scenes in which, the protagonists take drugs and drink spirits. Along the way, Chbosky intelligently explores these themes, whilst simultaneously reminding the reader about how exciting it is to be young and idealistic.
Charlie loves reading books and Patrick usually gives him some books in order to understand what be gay means. Charlie and his friends love to listen to music and it will be the only thing that keeps their stories joined.
Stephen Chbosky has also directed the film of his book. The title is the same in English but in Italian it is "Noi siamo infinito" which is literally "We Are Infinite." Since the main character said once, while he was driving home with his friends: "I feel infinite."
However, the film is quite faithful to the book's story and sometimes there are some quotes from the book. Although it is a good film, a lot of scenes are missing. For example, in the film there is not the scene in which Charlie goes crazy because he thought he was responsible for his aunt's death. Therefore, the book is much better than the film, because it is rich of details.
Last year during San Remo, a music festival that takes place in Liguria every year, the songwriter Alessio Bernabei sang his song called "Noi siamo infinito". Personally, I think that it would be Charlie's favourite song. It deals with the meaning of life and the vulnerability of our body.
Adolescence is one of the nicest periods of our lives, during this age we are choosing what we want to be. It is not a game it is our future.
FRANKENSTEIN by MERY SHELLEY