Flowers for Algernon

Rating – 4/5

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes is a science fiction book gives the reader a new perspective on life. The novel, published in the late 1950’s, follows a man named Charlie Gordon. Charlie is considered mentally retarded, and has an IQ of 70. He becomes the guinea pig of an experiment that will apparently double his IQ. Fortunately for him, Charlie’s IQ actually triples. Flowers for Algernon follows Charlie as he begins to see the world in a new way, and eventually outsmarts the people who changed his life for the better.

Reading this book changed the way I look at world. The thought process Charlie has when he learns more about life made me re-evaluate my own. I never thought about the way that mentally-disabled people look at this world. Also, the story line in general intrigued me. But I wouldn’t give this book 5/5 stars. I would give it maybe 4.

The thing that really bugged me in this book was the way that there were only two types of women portrayed in the book. On one hand, you had the quiet, emotional, and overall weak woman. On the other hand, you had the loud, obnoxious, “slutty” drama queen. There was no smart or strong female character that anyone could actually relate to. All the real work seemed to be done by men.

Other than that, Flowers for Algernon is thought-provoking book. I would recommend it to people at a high school to adult reading level. It had some mature content, but this book can definitely give a new perspective to young adult readers who are getting ready to take on the real world.




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