Book Review: The Spectacular Now

Ok, I have just finished reading The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp. This is a review that contains spoilers. Amanda, I know you probably won't want to read this as it is kind of like Perks of Being a Wallflower.

Overall: 3.5/5 stars

So, The Spectacular Now is about a high school senior named Sutter, a budding alcoholic who parties a lot. He has never had a really serious girlfriend, with his longest relationship lasting a few months, until his current gilrfriend Cassidy breaks up with him. He goes to a party and wakes up on someone's front lawn, with Aimee standing over him.

Sutter only means to be friends with Aimee and help her find someone, while he tries to get back together with Cassidy. As he spends more time with Aimee, she falls in love with him, and he starts to become a bad influence on her. She starts drinking with him and "stuff" happens. We'll just leave it at that. Sutter finds himself falling for Aimee and she asks him to move with her to St. Louis, where she wants to go to college. Sutter's friends hold an intervention for Sutter because they are worried about Aimee. Sutter realizes that if she doesn't break up with him soon, he will have to, because he cares too much about her and realizes that he not good for her. The two end up going to prom together and Aimee pushes Sutter to find his dad, who left when Sutter was younger, because she wishes she would have said things to her dad before he died.

The visit to Sutter's dad's house in Texas does not go well, as he forgot they were coming and they meet his "lady friend" and end up leaving without saying goodbye to his father. Sutter is driving while drunk and after some close calls, the car ends up on the side of the road after he almost lost control of the car. He is angry because she is too understanding (remember, he is drunk) and he gets out of the car, only to have her follow. Aimee gets hit by a car's side mirror as she is trying to get him to come back, and the caring Sutter comes back, and they drive back to Oklahoma.

Sutter did not graduate, as he wasn't working hard enough in Algebra, and has to go to summer school. Aimee tries to say that she will wait in Oklahoma for him to finish, so that they can move out to St. Louis together. He sends her off to Oklahoma, saying that he will come after he's finished school and she has already planned everything because she is better at that than he is. Sutter is trying to get her to leave so he can then break up with her and she can follow her dreams and life without him, because that is the best life he can give her. She leaves and the book ends with him drinking again, after he promised to only drink on weekends, back to living in the spectacular now.

Ok, summary over.
I liked how Sutter and Aimee both affected each other. Aimee is the first girl, I think, that Sutter really loves. He wants to do everything he can for her, but he believes that the best thing is for him to break up with her and the ending was unfortunately accurate. And Sutter helps Aimee to become more assertive and teaches her to have fun. Of course, I hoped that they would end up together, but I knew something like this was going to happen, I just didn't want to believe it.

Sutter's message seems to be  to live in the spectacular now and embrace the weird. And Aimee was extremely naive in knowing anything. I would like to amend Sutter's message, that we should "and be
be on and who to do it you have questions, feel free to ask me, too." (The stuff in quotes I wrote when I was half-asleep, so...yeah. I don't know where that came from....) As I was saying, I would like to amend Sutter's message to enjoy the now but keep the future in mind. And above anything, do not imitate Sutter, he is a bad influence.

Alright, I have to go now, I am ready to fall asleep at my computer. Good night!



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