Book Review – The Outsiders

Author: S.E. Hinton
Rating: 3.5 stars (on a scale of 1-5)

I don’t know if I’m emotionally ready to talk about this book yet. I finished it a few days ago, so hopefully enough time has passed for my heart to heal.

The Outsiders is a book written by S.E. Hinton. It tells the story of fourteen-year-old Ponyboy Curtis and his group of greaser friends. I really enjoyed this book. The way Hinton wrote it is so natural feeling – it seems as if Ponyboy himself is talking directly to you and I love that in books. The characters are also very natural and life-like.

It’s a quick, easy read but very enjoyable. My thirteen-year-old sister read it a couple weeks ago and passed it to me when she finished, but I’m glad I didn’t read it when I was younger. The book at first glance seems very similar to the Baby-Sitters Club or the Boxcar Children with it’s group of kids and teens figuring out life. However, I was pleased when I found that it was a darker version of those other “coming of age” books. This book dives right into the division of society and the clashes between the classes. Although in the point of view of a young lower class member (called ‘greasers’), it shows a balanced attitude of both classes. Well, eventually.

Character developement is also very important. The narrator, Ponyboy, develops a lot in this book. Not only because he’s fourteen, but because of his situation. He’s seen some stuff. He’s been through some stuff. What he does in the book and why he does it is the result of what he’s been through.

Another thing I greatly appreciated was the way S.E. Hinton was able to get the reader to become emotionally attached to the characters. To me, if I’m not attached to the characters in any way, even if the plot is great, I most likely won’t enjoy the book. I love books that make me feel, make me laugh, make me cry. And this book did all of that. More crying than laughing, though. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. 

I don’t want to spoil the ending, but I will say that the ending is one of those where I just closed the book, sat back, and felt like my heart had just been ripped out and stomped on. In other words, the ending was great. 

Since this is my first book review, I want to know what you guys think. Did you like my review? Should I do more? Any book suggestions?