Photo courtesy of MTV Books

Warning: do not read this book unless you have a decent chunk of time. Side effects could be burning your dinner, forgetting to change your laundry, or skipping the work you’re supposed to be doing. Once you start you may not be able to stop.

With all the hype about this movie, I decided I should read the book. Within a day I was recommending it to all my friends…and then I had to see the movie. Can’t decide between the two? Here’s the break down: Book v. Movie.

Why you should read the book:

  • It’s such a fast read! If you pick this book up you will have trouble to put it down. It’s written completely in letters addressed to you. In today’s digital culture it feels a little bit like reading an important text from a really good friend, except more sincere because that’s just who Charlie (the main character) is.
  • It will take you back to high school. It doesn’t matter how old you are or whether your experience was good or bad; you will remember how everyone had ups and downs and you will get to relive a new high school story while remembering your own.
  • It will make you think. It’s one of those books that really leaves you with something, in a way only a great book truly can. One of my friends who listened to me and checked the book out from a local library said someone wrote in the front page “This book changed my life.” I bet it will change yours too. Even if it’s just in the form of a burnt dinner tonight.

Now I’ll admit, the book is always better than the movie. And that holds true for this pair as well, but that doesn’t mean the movie isn’t great. It’s directed by the author, Stephen Chbosky, and thus stays pretty true to the message even though some interesting changes are made (I guess every author wants a redo right?).

Why you should see the movie:

  • Movies have music. I know, I know, this seems obvious. But it’s something you really do miss from a book, especially this one because many scenes are about certain songs and the feelings they give you. Somehow this slightly sad movie uses great music to make you want to get up and dance.
  • You probably need a good laugh right about now. Let’s face it, we’ve all been counting down the days until Thanksgiving when we get a little bit of time away from all our work. The book is funny but the movie is far funnier.
  • You’ve gotta hear it for yourself. So everyone loves Emma Watson right? But in this film she’s turned American. She tries really hard on the accent, but it’s just plain bad. It’s one of those things you have to hear for yourself and just laugh at. But come on. Is your British one really any better?

Okay, so really I’m recommending both. But I can tell you it’s time and money well spent. So if you’ve read the book, see the movie. If you’ve seen the movie, read the book. There are still enough parts that the movie left out to keep your interest. And if you haven’t done either, choose one, and afterwards, I’ll bet you’ll consider the other.

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