Mother-Daughter Book Club: Flowers for Algernon

As with all book posts, MAJOR SPOILER ALERT.

My mother, sister and I met for our first ever Mother-Daughter Book Club discussion on Sunday morning (over breakfast, because: duh!) and it felt like the cutest things we’ve ever done.  Our first book was Flowers for Algernon and I’ll be honest, before this, I’d never even heard of it before.  Turns out it was totally thought-provoking, heart-wrenching and worth the read!


If you’re like me and haven’t heard of it, it’s about Charlie Gordon, a man in his 30’s with an IQ of 68 who becomes the second subject (the first being a mouse named Algernon) to undergo surgery to increase his intelligence.  It’s written journal style, so you get a very personal look into Charlie’s mind as he becomes increasingly intelligent, deals with his stunted emotional growth, struggles to understand traumatic events from his childhood and ultimately, as he reverts back to his original IQ.

Though we all liked the book, I’d say my mom and sister loved it and I didn’t feel quite as passionately.  But I could see why they loved it so much.  You have a character that you end up really sympathizing with and rooting for and the plot just brings up so many ethical questions that it’s at once interesting and sad.  We all agreed that it was the perfect first book and I’d say our first book group discussion was a success!  Up next, “the epic 1984,” or so my mom is calling it 🙂

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