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Following his doctor's instructions, engaging simpleton Charlie Gordon tells his own story in a semi-literate "progris riports". He dimly wants to better himself but with an IQ of 68 can't even beat the laboratory mouse Algernon at maze-solving:
I dint feel bad because I watched Algernon and I lernd how to finish the amaze even if it takes me along time.
I dint know mice were so smart.
Algernon is extra-clever thanks to an experimental brain operation so far tried only on animals. Charlie eagerly volunteers as the first human subject. After frustrating delays and agonies of concentration, the effects begin to show and the reports steadily improve: "Punctuation, is fun!" But getting smarter brings cruel shocks, as Charlie realises that his merry "friends" at the bakery where he sweeps the floor have all along been laughing at him, never with him. The IQ rise continues, taking him steadily past the human average to genius level and beyond, until he's as intellectually alone as the old, foolish Charlie ever was--and now painfully aware of it. Then, ominously, the smart mouse Algernon begins to deteriorate ...
A timeless tear-jerker with a terrific emotional impact, Flowers for Algernon is the 25th choice in the millennium SF Masterworks series. --David Langford --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
You will be hard pushed to come across another story that is as uplifting and heartbreakingly sad as this one. Read morePublished 8 days ago by Frankiedoodle
Wonderful book - everyone should read this. Attitudes towards people who do not fit the 'Norm' excellently explored.Published 14 days ago by Irmina Corder
Fascinating. I always had a prejudice against SF, seeing it merely as genre fiction and as a result poorly written. I couldn't have been more wrong. Read morePublished 18 days ago by Hugh
Flower for Algernon is one of the best fictional books that I have read for a long time. The story line is very cleverly constructed to reflect perceptions of people and life from... Read morePublished 28 days ago by C. Burke