The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I couldn't believe that I am typing this with Kenny G.'s "Songbird" playing in the background. I'll probably play "Total Eclipse of the Heart" (original version) in a while. When I feel optimistic that my life will end like a movie with a happy ending, I read the pages and I feel like reality just punched me in the gut. When I feel like I'm stuck in a rut, I read the pages and hope for silver linings. Maybe I am neurotic.
Aside from the songs I mentioned, I also encountered a lot of literary classics in this book - "A Tale of Two Cities", "The Great Gatsby" and "The Catcher in the Rye" to name a few. It also reminded me of the different levels of fanaticism and its effects on the fanatics. I got few pointers on American football (I have no idea how it is played!) and general psychology.
I notice that I love reading books with "special" lead characters. I love Pat's story as much as I love reading the point-of-views of the narrators from "Flowers for Algernon", "Perks of Being A Wallflower" and "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time". Maybe I do have a penchant for people with flaws - flawed yet true to themselves.
I've seen the movie. I applaud the actors and I believe they are well-chosen. But I think the main characters, especially the male protagonist - Pat Peoples, could have been developed more. The movie is very loosely based on the book, but I still had my own expectations when I started reading it. Reading this book is like reading Pat's diary. The way he thinks is simple yet fascinating. I would consider this story a light read but embedded with heavy emotions. I bawled in the end. Matthew Quick wrote a funny, witty, refreshing and very atypical love story. Don't get me wrong, I love Jennifer Lawrence and gorgeous Bradley Cooper, but the book just did it for me.
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