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Title: Flowers for Algernon
Author: Daniel Keyes
Rating: of 5 Battle Axes
Charlie, a mentally retarded man, volunteers for an experimental surgery to boost his intelligence.
We follow his journey from beginning to end through a series of journal entries by Charlie himself.
ALL THE FEELZZZZ!!!!!!!!!!! I knew this followed the up and then down of Charlie and knew the ending but I have to admit, I was not prepared for how this hit me emotionally.
It was heartbreaking to read about Charlie and his "friends" at the bakery and to realize, before Charlie did, just what kind of "friends" they actually were.
To read about his burgeoning intelligence and to see his happiness and positive attitude melting before my eyes was like a kick in the gut, over and over and over again. I read this in one sitting because I couldn't put this down and I while I knew the ending, I had to see for myself. There was a time or two where I just put my kindle down and hunched up for a minute or so to let the storm pass through.
By the time we came to his downward slide, it wasn't as bad, mainly because Charlie didn't realize how bad it was. Keyes does a great job of showing the reality without either being crass or gross or simplistic.
All in all, I am glad I hadn't read this earlier in life. I probably wouldn't have appreciated it and simply shrugged it off. But I am very glad I have read it now and have to admit, this is also in the running for best book of 2015. It hit me that hard.