Friday, August 23, 2013

The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp

Standalone. Alfred A. Knopf (October 2008) Own
So, my beautiful fat girlfriend, Cassidy, is threatening to kick me to the curb again, my best friend suddenly wants to put the brakes on our lives of fabulous fun, my mom and big sister are plotting a future in which I turn into an atomic vampire, and my dad, well, my dad is a big fat question mark that I'm not sure I want the answer to.

Some people would let a senior year like this get them down. Not me. I'm Sutter Keel, master of the party. I'm your man when it comes to cranking the wild times. But, don't mistake a midnight philosopher like me for nothing more than a shallow party boy. Just ask Aimee, the new girl in my life. She saw the depth in the Sutterman from that first moment when she found me passed out on the front lawn. Okay, so she's a social disaster, but that's where I come in. Isn't it my duty to show her a splendiforous time, and then let her go forth and prosper?                                                                                    Yes, life is weird, but I embrace the weird. Let everyone else go marching off into their great shining futures if they want. Me, I've always been more than content to tip my whisky bottle and take a ride straight into the heart of the spectacular now.

I can't even begin to put in words this book. It threw me for a loop. I don't even know the right words to respond with to what I've just been through. I know I say it time and time again but this book was not what I expected. I've been obsessing over this book's movie trailer because it looks like simply a romantic movie with it's up and downs. But, it's not reality. I think a lot of this book is about that. What really happens in the world. 

This wasn't a love story at all. The trailer made me think that and want it so much that it took me so long to realize this book isn't what I bargained for. Now that I've calmed slightly and I mean slightly down I realize that this book may have not been what I bargained for but that may not necessarily be a bad thing. I still have mixed emotions and can't seem to process this story but maybe I will tomorrow or in a week or in I don't know how long. I'm just this big one confused jumbled mess that doesn't know what to do. 

A lot of people talk about how it was weird getting into the mind of an eighteen year old boy and I guess it is weird. I just never thought of it that way because I felt I could find him in my high school. I don't think anyone was as extreme as him but I can just imagine him as an everyday normal kid too. Even Aimee (well of course Aimee) who was not at all who I expected - I could imagine her in my class. I actually imagined her as me. I could see myself be swayed by a guy like this who's actually a good guy with good intentions but he's so... I could see me in her, the nerdy-glasses-wearing-social-awkward girl that no one notices. It was heartbreaking to feel that for her. 

For those who read The Spectacular Now:

Can we please talk about this ending? If anyone's read this book message me on Goodreads or something because I need some closure here. I have this sense of dread after reading it. Maybe that's the point? I heard the movie has an ending. I've got to watch it before I go crazy!

Overall: I was expecting more romance than the actual reality of what life can hold for you and how you see yourself in that world. Sutter was the main subject and I like that about the book. It was more intense than I expected too. This is a book that you either love it or has you searching for answers. 

This book like I mentioned has a movie that just came out. The trailer is awesome. Check it out and fall in love:



14 comments:

  1. I've been hearing A LOT about this movie recently! I haven't really given the book much consideration though, but I'm really quite curious about it now. It is always quite strange for me to get into the mind of an 18 year old boy, though it can be a refreshing experience most of the time. I kind of love that this book has you feeling all over the place. Sometimes those sorts of reactions can be good. Lovely review, Adriana! :)

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    1. I thought the movie was going to be very indie and low key but then suddenly the trailer is on tv so I guess that's not happening. I'm really glad that a lot of people know about it. I hope someone reviews it so I know if I should watch it or not. It's true sometimes the jumble of feeling can be good. When an author can do that to you it's usually a good thing.

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  2. Your review made me laugh! I have the same problem when a book isn't what I expect it to be.

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    1. Haha (: I don't know how I'm not immune to being surprised already! It happens all the time.

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  3. This is such an interesting review. I like that you aren't sure what to think. It can be hard when we start reading a book (or watching a movie) thinking it is a certain genre and then it turns out to be different (I went to the scary movie Copycat about a serial killer thinking I was seeing a comedy- boy was that a shock). It can be hard to change gears. I am definitely curious about the ending and hope someone messages you so that you can chat about it! :) Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Oh wow. I just looked it up. If it's the one I'm looking at then that surely must have been a shock! I'm desperate for someone to talk to about the ending!

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  4. Why do they always try to make all books more romantic in movies. That's what really annoys me in VA trailer - too much kissing and romance, that series is far more than that. I have heard of this story and I'm so happy that the book is more than the love story. I love books that are more realistic and not pink and fluffy. Great review :)

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    1. There was kissing in the first book but I understand what you are saying. It's so much more than that. It depends on my mood. I kind of like the cheesy romance in movies or books when done right of course (:

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  5. I can see how the trailer had you expecting more of a romance. I hate when books or movies are mis-marketed as something they're not. The book sounds utterly strange, don't think I'd ever pick it up, the movie trailer does look good though. Great review Adriana =)

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    1. Yeah, much more strange than I expected. Kind of like Jasper Jones. I plan on watching the movie since it's getting such high praise.

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  6. Aww that trailer is such a heart break. All the ups and downs of romance. But compared to the book, a total flip-side! It's more like a book of finding yourself and growing up and just more emotion than just romance. I love me some romance movies but the book seems a whole lot more interesting and depth-full. And somehow I already love Sutter for being so undeceive because then it makes it so much more relatable to me.

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    1. Your comment is amazing. I don't know how to respond. I know for sure you will be one of the ones who loves Sutter's story.

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  7. I wish I had some sort of intelligent insight into how the book ended, but I'm lost for words as well. I seen the trailer after you sent me the link while you were reading it, and that's what drew me in. It looked like a romantic comedy. But realistically, the book isn't romantic, or funny, it's sad, dark and uncomfortable.

    I really wanted to stop reading once Sutter met Aimee, when you introduce a sweet and impressionable character to the wild alcoholic party boy, no good can come of it.

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  8. After reading the book i dont really know how i feel. Somehow it manage to make me fall in love with sutter but at the same time hate it too. It feels surreal and i just want to watch the movie right after! After watching the movie im so upset that they missed alot of scenes thats in the book and oh my gosh, the ending. I still have a love-hate feeling with this book but i absolutely enjoyed my time reading it.

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