The Spectacular Now

The Spectacular Now

by Tim Tharp


SUTTER KEELY. HE’S the guy you want at your party. He’ll get everyone dancing. He’ ll get everyone in your parents’ pool. Okay, so he’s not exactly a shining academic star. He has no plans for college and will probably end up folding men’s shirts for a living. But there are plenty of ladies in town, and with the help of Dean Martin and Seagram’s V.O., life’s pretty fabuloso, actually.
Until the morning he wakes up on a random front lawn, and he meets Aimee. Aimee’s clueless. Aimee is a social disaster. Aimee needs help, and it’s up to the Sutterman to show Aimee a splendiferous time and then let her go
forth and prosper. But Aimee’s not like other girls, and before long he’s in way over his head. For the first time in his life, he has the power to make a difference in someone else’s life—or ruin it forever.

This National Book Award Finalist is soon to be a major motion picture — one of the most buzzed-about films at Sundance 2013, starring Shailene Woodley and Miles Teller.

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I like reading stories from guy’s perspective. Maybe because there are not too many out there, or maybe because it feels refreshing to stay away for a while from girl drama.
Anyways I enjoyed reading this book as the main character was very likeable (even with his flaws) and his story seemed light even when it touched some heavy themes.

It would have been a 5 stars book except for:

  • Aimee – I couldn’t figure out this girl and she was a bit too naive for my taste; all that planning scared me to be honest.. and not telling anyone her secret? Oh boy, that’s just wrong.
  • The ending – which I still don’t get, not really.. I might need to re-read the last page. Can I also have one more page, pretty please?

So.. this is by no means a full review, just some thought to remember the story, but these are the things that I liked about the story:


life-is-spectacularWith his fun side and the deep side (that he hides behind his remarks and his drinking and him making other people have a good time). He didn’t let people too close, not even his best friend knew him well enough, but being in his mind meant that I knew him quite well, and I liked his company. He was fun to be around, most of the times keeping this optimistic shield around him, but he also had another side of him that many people didn’t see, one that made me root for him: He needed someone to care for him, he needed things to be simple, he was misunderstood most of the times and made tons of many mistakes. He was not good at apologising either, and didn’t really know what he wanted from this life, but you know that guy that feels like the soul of a party: Sutter is him. Keeping the parties going, making everyone feel at home, pretending that life is good – yeah, that’s his specialty.

His little chats with his best friend (even though the “best” part is quite doubtable) were so great; they made me turn page after page with a smile on my face. And his inner thoughts – he might not sound like a real guy, but he had me laughing or thinking about some things he said here an there.. I have tons of quotes that I liked to testify if you won’t have my word)

The writing 

I just picked this book up and couldn’t put it down. I didn’t want to. It was great!
Beautiful written, with a pinch of humour but also a deeper side of it, making us see the world through the eyes of someone so different than myself, but still being able to connect with him on so many levels..  I am really glad that I was able to read this story, to meet these characters, and join in all the fun 🙂


partyI loved remembering high-school – so many parties, having fun, having no worries, feeling free, forgetting about everything bad and finding ways to enjoy every moment. It’s not like we don’t do those things now, but we are more ‘quite’ about it, less free, more down-to-earth .. or it just feels this way.

Anyways, I loved this story, the humor, the emotional part.. everything. I thought it was supposed to be a light, funny read (not sure where I got that idea from) but at times it felt pretty heavy.

And yes, there is swearing and drinking and some talk about sex, I am not sure why people keep warning about hese things in their reviews – where do you live in a bubble so you don’t find that in real life?
No, no, no.. there’s no need for you to explain, I get that you don’t like reading about those things (I am getting bothered by other things too that don’t seem to bother you one bit *cough* love-triangles *cough* insta-love *cough* world&character under-development *cough*) I just had it on the tip of my fingers, so I had to let it out.

Also I am not sure how you do it (the parenting stuff), but when I was young it only took my parents to not let me do some things and .. challenge accepted! ^_^
If you don’t buy a book for them, they will borrow it from their friends and read it without you knowing it.
And even though there are drugs and a lot of drinks and driving (while having a drink) in this story, there are many other things that make this book worth reading… by young people too.

Back to the point:
Loved this book, Tim Tharp I am keeping my eyes on you now!

The quote that made me read this book:

“The color flow into your lungs, into your bloodstream. You are the colors”.
~ Amazon preview 

Happy midnight reading!

PS: Oh.. [the 3rd thing I didn’t like that much:] I know that boys don’t necessarily like skinny girls, but the “fat girlfriend” thing got old and pretty fast. Yes, I got it the first time around, she was fat and beautiful, but the repetition drove me crazy.

Movie Trailer:

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6 responses to “The Spectacular Now”

  1. Julie says:

    I got this book after reading your review. I enjoyed it very much.

    I want to see the movie now ;))

    • Ari says:

      Oh, yeah.. I think I heard something about a movie, but don’t know if it’s out yet. Still, I would really like to see it too, as I loved the story.

      • Julie says:

        It’s supposed to hit theaters in August, I think. I’ve been searching for a trailer but i only saw a few pictures so far. Can’t wait for it though!

  2. Amelia says:

    I am officially stalking you now. Got my computer back and I need to make good use of it!
    I have this book on my to-read list, and I love male POV and books about real teens that swear and drink and have sex and all that. People seem to think that if they don’t acknowledge these things they don’t happen in real life. I would think twice about that :p

    • Ari says:

      You can do that just fine 😛

      I think you’ll like it, quite a lot. And yep.. those things happen no matter if we close our eyes to them or not. It’s important how we deal with them, how we raise our kids to know what they are doing.

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