I came across ‘The Spectacular Now’ in the Waterstones in Amsterdam. I never heard about this book before, or the movie for that matter. When I read where this book was about it definitively sounded like my kind of book. So I bought it and started reading it.
The Spectacular Now is a story about Sutter. Sutter is a 18 year old guy going through his last year of high school. Sutter is not an ordinary kind of guy. Sutter is the kind of guy you want at your parties. He is the one who gets everybody to dance, sing and drink. Sutter’s life hasn’t always been easy and he tries to escape that by a lot of partying. So he is kind of an expert. He doesn’t plan to go to college like his classmates but still, Sutter thinks his life is great. Until he meets Aimee. Aimee is also in her last year of college and she knows Sutter and his reputation. But Aimee is not used to people talking to her, especially guys. So soon Sutter decided to help Aimee, but Aimee is not an ordinary girl. And soon Sutter is in over his head.
This book was not what I expected it to be. First of all this book was written from Sutter’s point of view and he is a guy. So that’s different. Second of all there is a lot of drinking in this book. Not lemonade drinking but alcohol drinking. Which leads to a lot of drunken moments. Thirdly Sutter is kind of a man-whore. He has had a lot of girlfriends.
I expected this to be some kind of romantic story about a boy and a girl falling in love and changing each other’s lives forever. But that’s absolutely not the case in this book. At first it really took me a while to get into this story. I didn’t liked the story at all in the beginning and was really asking myself why I picked this one. But I kept going and half way through I began to like the story and Sutter.
What I liked the most about this book was Sutter’s motto in life ‘Embrace the Weird’. I mean that’s just a great way to life because there really is a lot of weird stuff in this world. What I also liked is that Sutter is the way you think he is. He is a drinking, partying and sometimes crazy young guy and that’s exactly the way he really is. Not only for everyone who sees him. The way Sutter describes himself is the way he truly is. He loves drinking and partying and really doesn’t care what most people think of him. That’s refreshing if you ask me. Most times you read about a person who act’s one way and feels like another. Not in this book.
What I didn’t like was the way Sutter treated Aimee. I know he tries to help Aimee with her social awkwardness but does he really have to take advantage of her? Because that was how it felt to me. He wanted to help her but let’s be honest… he isn’t really helping her. When she finds out what Sutter is doing she won’t be able to trust any guy for the rest of her life. And all the ‘good’ things he meant won’t be remembered because people mostly remember the bad things. I think the good will be overshadowed by the bad in this particular story.
So overall I liked this story but also didn’t like a lot what was going on. I still want to see the movie because frankly I had another image in my head when I thought of Sutter, than the guy who’s playing his role. But to be honest this is not my kind of book.