Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This book is a classic, but I'd never read it. So when it came up on my Kindle, I bought it. I'm so glad I did.
This is the kind of Sci Fi I like.
Charlie has a low IQ, but he's not aggressive (in fact, he's very nice and kind) and has the urge to better himself. He undergoes an experimental treatment to increase his IQ. The mouse that the treatment was tested on before Charlie is Algernon. At the start of the book, Algernon is able to navigate a maze faster than Charlie.
The story is told through Charlie's notes/ diary that he has to keep for the experiment. You see him go from being well meaning and confused, to increasingly intelligent until he's passed everyone he knows. The scenes where he realises that the colleagues who he thought were his friends and were laughing with him, were actually laughing at him, is heart breaking. Actually, quite a lot of the book is heartbreaking. You feel anguish for Charlie as he was and for Charlie as he has become.
It's an incredibly moving book, quite sad, but thought provoking. I will be thinking about this one for days. I'll probably re-read it.
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