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Search tags: Stephen-Chbosky
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review 2020-04-27 12:23
Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky
Imaginary Friend - Stephen Chbosky

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I really enjoyed this book! This is a big book and somewhat intimidating due to its length. It is a big story though and I felt like all of those pages really were necessary. I have not read this author's previous novel but as soon as I saw this book, I knew that I needed to get my hands on a copy. My instincts were right and this book ended up being a wonderful experience.

Christopher and his mother, Kate, begin this journey in the middle of the night fleeing Kate's abusive boyfriend. They end up in a small town in Pennsylvania where Kate starts a job at the nursing home and Christopher starts making friends at school. They live in a hotel room and Christopher appreciates all of the small things his mother does for him. Then Christopher goes missing for an entire week and everything changes.

This is Christopher's story but it is also the story of all of the town's residents. We get to learn the backgrounds, the secrets, and motivations for all of the key players in town. Each piece of knowledge adds to the overall story and I loved it when a piece of the puzzle snapped into place. I thought that the story was really imaginative and there were some pretty amazing twists that I never saw coming. The cast of characters was quite large and very well done.

Christine Lakin did a fabulous job with the narration. She handled a very large cast of characters incredibly well with each character sounding unique. I thought that she added a lot of excitement into the story as well as the character's emotions. She has a very pleasant voice that was easy to listen to for hours at a time. This was my first experience in listening to her narration work and I was very impressed.

I would recommend this book to others. I thought this was a very well done story that was entertaining from beginning to end. I am thinking it might finally be time to give The Perks of Being a Wallflower at try.

I received a review copy of this book from Grand Central Publishing and I borrowed a copy of the audiobook from my local library.

Initial Thoughts
I liked this book. I have not read The Perks of Being a Wallflower so I had the opportunity to look at this book with fresh eyes. Chbosky is most definitely a fine storyteller. There is a whole lot going on in this book and I loved it when a piece of the overall puzzle would snap into place. I felt fully immersed in this world and wanted nothing more than to see Christopher come out of everything better than when he went in. I listened to the audiobook and I thought that the narrator did a fantastic job with this story.

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review 2020-04-21 14:15
Imaginary Friend ★★★★☆
Imaginary Friend - Stephen Chbosky

Imaginary Friend is a hard book to review. I struggled even with deciding on how many stars to rate it. It's kind of a mess, in terms of pacing, plotting, and themes. Most of the characters are just archetypes. But the story and the imagery was so compelling I could not put it down or stay away for long. I kept coming back for more. I've been reading so much horror for so long that I'm not often moved or chilled, but there were many small moments in this book that felt somehow fresh and new and awful. 

 

It really needed a heavier hand with the editing, though. Remember the complaints about the LotR movie The Return of the King had about 10 different endings - every time you thought the story resolved, it picked up and told a new ending? That's this book. At one point last night, I was yelling at the book in my best Monty Python voice, "Get on with it!"  There was a lot of weird Christian allegory, but I'm not enough of a church-goer to parse it. 

 

And yet. And yet, I still would recommend it. 

 

Hardcover version, picked up on a whim at Half Price Books, when I set a goal for myself to pick a hardcover of an author I'm unfamiliar with from the Horror section, without reading reviews or anything other than the jacket blurb. 

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text 2020-04-20 16:12
Imaginary Friend - 568/720 pg
Imaginary Friend - Stephen Chbosky

all around town, hE walked, spreading hIs word like the flu by every means available. a whisper. a hint. a forgotten dream. a family's touch, the fear that keeps the old awake at night. the anger that haunts the middle aged.

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text 2020-04-18 17:10
Imaginary Friend - 524/720 pg
Imaginary Friend - Stephen Chbosky

Fridays came and went, and Mr. Henderson never asked to whisk her away to a B&B for some red wine, bird-watching, and lovemaking. There was no ballet. No symphony. No Broadway musical at Heinz Hall. Not even a first-run movie. God, she wanted to stab him. 

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text 2020-04-12 02:02
Imaginary Friend - 78/720 pg
Imaginary Friend - Stephen Chbosky

The old lady was sitting up in bed, watching static on the television. Her yellow teeth drowning in a jar on her nightstand.

 

"She took another one. She'll kill us all before the end," she said.

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