This is the sixth book I have managed on my quest to read fifty new books (see here) and I feel like I am about a decade too late. Everyone I know studied it at school, whereas my class did Catcher in the Rye.
This book is every where you look, including a play and Liberty collection, so how come I never read it before? Quite simply I didn't know what it was about and never thought I would need to. All I knew about this book was that there was swearing in it, and at 14, that is all you want so I assumed that was the reason it was popular (and at my school it probably was - on reflection, I think this book would have gone over the heads of most of my classmates).
Someone mentioned it to me in passing and let slip it was about an autistic boy, and this piqued my interest. My little brother is autistic, goes to a special school and has just started to question it so this is something that hit very close to home. I actually ordered it the second I got near my laptop in the Amazon 3 for £10 deal and bumped it straight up to the top in my to read pile.
I can see straight away why this book has won so many awards and is so popular. It genuinely fascinates me, and I picked up on so many things in it that I could relate to that the average reader may be wouldn't be able to. Seeing the world through Christopher's eyes reminded me very much of some aspects of my brother.
I can try and sum up this book by saying that it is a murder mystery novel seen through a different view. I can say that it includes some heartbreaking themes and deals with complicated things such as deceit, love, murder etc very well, but that's not that point of the book. I could tell you word for word what happens and it still wouldn't ruin it for you - you have to read it and experience it yourself.
I'm not ashamed to say that the final line of this book made me cry (though admittedly this is because it is something close to my heart).
It ends on the phrase '...I can do anything' but you really have to read the book to understand the context.
Have you ever read it? (If not, you should!)