Sunday, March 6, 2011

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

This science fiction classic is a brilliant book. When the story opens, we are introduced to Charlie Gordon, a mentally challenged man who is about to undergo an operation to increase his intelligence. As the novel progresses, we watch Charlie make remarkable progress in a very short period of time, as his experimental treatment leads him to a genius-level IQ.

His increased intelligence, however, comes at a steep price, as he quickly discovers that many of his so called "friends" from his earlier life where in reality making fun of his mental handicap, while the doctors who are responsible for his treatment see him as a mere human version of Algernon, the laboratory mouse that was first experimented on before the human trial. Amidst this existential angst, Charlie discovers the mysterious of love, the uncertainty of being human, and -- by the end of the book -- utter fear as he learns that his newfound intelligence is destined to dwindle away.

This book is a stunning literary work that deserves its title as a modern classic. With an innovative style and unforgettable characters, Daniel Keys has created a story that readers won't soon forget. This book is a great read for anybody who loves literature, not just science fiction fans.

5 out of 5 stars