Monday 12 September 2016

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

Book Title: Flowers for Algernon
Author: Daniel Keyes
Genres: Science Fiction
My Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Goodreads Summary: With more than five million copies sold, Flowers for Algernon is the beloved, classic story of a mentally disabled man whose experimental quest for intelligence mirrors that of Algernon, an extraordinary lab mouse. In poignant diary entries, Charlie tells how a brain operation increases his IQ and changes his life. As the experimental procedure takes effect, Charlie's intelligence expands until it surpasses that of the doctors who engineered his metamorphosis. The experiment seems to be a scientific breakthrough of paramount importance--until Algernon begins his sudden, unexpected deterioration. Will the same happen to Charlie?
What did I think? You know when a book is so good you just can't express your feelings? Or any thoughts whatsoever? This was such a book for me.

After I've finished reading it I gave it to my girlfriend and told her to read it. She finished it in a day. She loved it as much as me. But, we couldn't talk about it. We didn't know what to say.

Charlie Gordon, who has an IQ of 68, volunteers to participate in an experiment previously only tested on mice. He undergoes an operation that will gradually make him smarter, something he's been longing for all his life. The story is told in the first person through a series of progress reports that he has to write.

At first his grammar is so bad it makes the first few chapters a little difficult to read, but don't let that deter you, the writing improves quickly.

This book has become a favourite of mine over night. I can't stop thinking about it. It's thought-provoking, devastating and heartbreaking but also beautiful. It discusses how we treat disabilities, how we treat fellow human beings and what it means to be human.

Flowers for Algernon paints in vivid images how lonely being on both end of the IQ spectrum can be and my heart hurt for Charlie throughout the story.

The last two chapters however, they made me tear up, twisting my stomach with heartbreak. I could barely speak when I was done.

Everyone should read this book. It's simply brilliant.

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