Saturday, 22 March 2014

THE SPECTACULAR NOW

The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp

Sutter's the guy you want at your party. Aimee's not. She needs help and it's up to Sutter to show Aimee a splendiferous time and then let her go forth and prosper. But Aimee's not like other girls and before long he's over his head. For the first time in his life he has the power to make a difference in someone else's life - or ruin it forever.
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Aaaaand the March reading slump continues. Perhaps I'm being mean.

This book wasn't terrible. It wasn't great. It was a bit average. It started out pretty well, I was happy to go along with it, but it never sucked me all the way in and eventually I started to get bored. I also spent a lot of time wondering when it was set - or, perhaps more accurately, when it was written. It doesn't feel like a modern book. A not-especially-quick Google search tells me it was released in 2008, but I would have put it ten years before that. It has a similar feel, I think, to The Perks of Being a Wallflower, which I'm pretty sure was 90s. This book feels like it's set in the 90s. Maybe it is, maybe there was a specific, dating reference that I missed, but I don't think there was. It just feels odd. 

I didn't realise it was also a film when I bought it - I hadn't looked closely enough at the people on the cover to realise they're actually Shailene Woodley and Miles Teller - and that big yellow circle saying NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE was covered up by a sneaky sticker. Well played, Waterstones. Well played. But anyway, my point it, once I peeled that sticker off and discovered it was also a film starring Shailene Woodley as Aimee, I was thrown. She is not right for Aimee. Not right at all. And that jarring image sat in my brain the whole way through the book. It didn't help that Sutter reminded me very strongly of a friend of mine, and I couldn't get that image out of my head either, which made the reading experience kind of uncomfortable in places.

All in all, I didn't find this book especially spectacular. I'm sorry. I couldn't resist.

Also, spectacular is actually a very difficult word to type. If I missed one of my misspellings, I do not want to hear it.


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