TITLE: The Outsiders
BY: S.E. Hinton
GENRE: Classics, Young Adult, Fiction
PUBLICATION: Published May 15th 2012 by Speak (first published 1967)
“Stay gold, Ponyboy, Stay gold…”
The Outsiders is about two weeks in the life of a 14-year-old boy. The novel tells the story of Ponyboy Curtis and his struggles with right and wrong in a society in which he believes that he is an outsider. According to Ponyboy, there are two kinds of people in the world: greasers and socs. A soc (short for “social”) has money, can get away with just about anything, and has an attitude longer than a limousine. A greaser, on the other hand, always lives on the outside and needs to watch his back. Ponyboy is a greaser, and he’s always been proud of it, even willing to rumble against a gang of socs for the sake of his fellow greasers–until one terrible night when his friend Johnny kills a soc. The murder gets under Ponyboy’s skin, causing his bifurcated world to crumble and teaching him that pain feels the same whether a soc or a greaser.
This review's a bit personal. AND MILD SPOILERS... can't help it.
Thanks to Noriko, I was inclined to read this book. I think my copy is one of the oldest books in my shelf. If you want to see Nori’s review, you’ll find it HERE. And if you really want to read a more coherent review, you should check it out as mine would focus on what this book did to me, rather than what HOW was this book really.
Written in the simplest writing style and a story that spanned in only 2 weeks of the MCs life, this book surely is really a surprise. The writing style made it so easier to understand and faster to read. I haven’t read anything else from this author so I don’t know if this is really her style but for this book, it suits or fits the narrator. The tone makes the storytelling more genuine. Ponyboy is a 14-year old outcast but is surrounded by loyal and great friends and most especially, has two older brother who, by the way, I want to be my older brothers too. The author created such complex characters who stole my heart despite their actions in the book. And through the characters’s personalities, the author conveyed her message perfectly. And I like the message. The book ended in favored with neither of the 2 groups, instead, it showed the bad and the good of both sides. If you want a book about equality and anti-discrimination, this one’s perfect. The Outsiders highlighted the similarities of both sides instead of their differences. Like Noriko said, this one’s illuminating. 🙂 🙂
This book reminded me of something I didn’t know I forgot. See that quote above? STAY GOLD. I should’ve realized it’s a reference to one of my favorite poems when I was younger. It’s from Robert Frost’s poems ‘Nothing Gold Can Stay’ and I have that poem written on stationary paper and posted above my desk all throughout my primary to highschool days. Along with another of Frost’s, ‘The Road Not Taken’. But it’s a good thing I didn’t realize this book will mention that poem, if I did, I would’ve hesitated to read it as I’m certain this will strike home, deep in my heart. And these days, I avoid reading books that make me cry. It won’t help my battle with depression.
I did warn you this can be a bit personal...
I was a mess after reading this book. Unlike Ponyboy, who doesn’t really understand what Frost meant in the poem, I got what Frost means perfectly even at a young age. Don’t lose your innocence. Maybe now you get it why I partnered the two poems I mentioned above. They kinda connect, don’t they. 🙂 Stay Gold. Stay like a child and that was my goal. Not to stay immature but not to lose that same innocence and wonder all kids have. Well, I lost it. I forgot to stay Gold.
I cried so hard while reading this book, especially the last third. My God. Forget it was written so simply. I forgot the book’s flaws, this indeed hit home. What an amazing experience. I’m so glad I read this book and added it on my To be Reread shelf. I’ll read this every year. 🙂 🙂 🙂 And I’m posting it again on my wall.
Lastly, I highly recommend this book. REALLY. It’s a perfect story of brotherhood, friendship and equality. Darn this book.
*I think this book fits a category on one of the reading challenges I’m doing: A book that tackles a problem our society facing today.
PERSONAL NOTE: Stay Gold…
Thanks for reading guys,