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Books, to me, should not be about moralizing They should be explorations of controversial ideas and of the horrible things that people can do And that is exactly what this book is Forgive Me Leonard Peacock avoids moralizing, but also doesn t shy away from the harsh reality of what Leonard plans to do And all this is to say that I have seen so many people say that they hate everyone who enjoyed this book Notwithstanding the fact that I kind of despise that statement, inherently, I completely disagree There s so much homophobia here There s so much misogyny How dare you excuse it Here s the thing this book doesn t excuse any of it Despite several things I d usually DNF for the misogyny and homophobia of the protagonist, namely this convinced me How By narratively showing that all of those things are negative, rather than some accepted behavior And none of this is to diss the idea that this book goes to far, or doesn t explore Leonard s issues enough You know what In terms of the misogyny, I have to agree I wanted quite a bitout of Lauren s character her lack of agency within the narrative is a blatant weak spot If a stronger character had been given to her, the scenes in which Leonard ignored consent in his interactions with her would ve felt like farof a purposeful decision This is as many layered a book as you can get, but first and foremost, it is a character study of a deeply traumatized teenager And it s a very, very good one Leonard Peacock has one of the most distinctive voices and personalities I ve ever seen in YA Even though he does a lot of crap wrong a lot, a lot of crap I adored his character The writing is lovely, with a quality that brings you straight into Leonard s mind His thoughts about the world almost reminded me of A Catcher in the Rye in their matter of fact quality Basically, I have met my match in book form I read this entire book yes, the whole damn thing in an hour and a half without ever breaking, not even to use the bathroom I don t even think I looked up I definitely didn t look at the clock I spent the last 100 pages shaking and feeling as if I couldn t come up for air This is a book I will not forget for a long, long time, and one I cannot recommend enough.Trigger warnings rape and sexual assault.Blog Goodreads Twitter Youtube When the low, heavy sky weighs like a lid On the groaning spirit, victim of long ennui, And from the all encircling horizon Spreads over us a day gloomier than the night When the earth is changed into a humid dungeon, In which Hope like a bat Goes beating the walls with her timid wings And knocking her head against the rotten ceilingCharles Baudelaire, Spleen Damn you, Leonard Peacock you made me remember of who used to be one of my favorite poet when I was a teenager Ha, Baudelaire with his genius misanthropy, his often poor opinion of women and his endless melancholy, always full of irony and cynicism I would have hated him if I didn t love him so much Truth is, being close to Leonard felt like that all hate and contempt and understanding and despair Leonard is no conventional hero, and I can see how his unlikeable traits could create great hate in the readers heart Not me, though How much he made me want to hate him, I never did When the rain stretching out its endless trainImitates the bars of a vast prisonAnd a silent horde of loathsome spidersComes to spin their webs in the depths of our brains,All at once the bells leap with rageAnd hurl a frightful roar at heaven,Even as wandering spirits with no countryBurst into a stubborn, whimpering cry. Charles Baudelaire, Spleen Let s not shy away from the truth he is a sexist, conceited human being But see, this is where I have to explain what I hate in books I hate when sexism is normalized, accepted, encouraged, even I hate it with passion Does that mean that every book has to be rid of characters who think like that No, I don t think so There is a definite difference between1condoning a behavior by giving readers the impression that sexism is normal, and2picturing a fucked up character and how he sees life through his prism It is definitely different, and here lies the talent of an author for me, a writer in the first situation lets his story tainted by offensive stereotypes, let it drown A writer in the second position owns it He controls it Frankly It s obvious that what Leonard thinks is often offensive I mean GAH The guy wants to kill someone and himself for fuck sake Of course his head isn t the better place to be I sure didn t expect anything else despair and hate areoften than not intertwined, unfortunatelyAnd without drums or music, long hearsesPass by slowly in my soul Hope, vanquished,Weeps, and atrocious, despotic AnguishOn my bowed skull plants her black flag. Charles Baudelaire, Spleen Yet I can t deny that the hate so much hate gets hard to stomach at times, especially because it is tainted by so much arrogance Yet I can t completely dismiss his feelings Yes, he is judgmental, he assumes many things about his classmates and all the adults in his life All the time It gets uncomfortable sometimes and I won t deny it Yet it seemed real to me, because yes, there are kids like him everywhere Yes, the moral questions he wonders about constantly are valuable Are we all monsters Are we delusional I havememories than if I d lived a thousand years.The desire to end all thingsA heavy chest of drawers cluttered with balance sheets,Processes, love letters, verses, ballads,And heavy locks of hair enveloped in receipts,Hides fewer secrets than my gloomy brain.It is a pyramid, a vast burial vaultWhich containscorpses than potter s field I am a cemetery abhorred by the moon,In which long worms crawl like remorseAnd constantly harass my dearest dead.I am an old boudoir full of withered roses,Where lies a whole litter of old fashioned dresses,Where the plaintive pastels and the pale Bouchers,Alone, breathe in the fragrance from an opened phial. Charles Baudelaire, Spleen But don t get fooled by his conceited mind Leonard suffers, and at no moment can you dismiss his despair because of his behavior I couldn t, anyway Along the way you realizeandandthat Leonard has problems Real ones Devastating ones.I know how stupid that can seem because DUH look at what he planned but seeing him mixing half truths, real despair and delusions it broke me a little We have a word in French, le d senchantement It was often used to refer to the post 1830 generation when youngs didn t know what to do any, now that epic careers weren t possible noNapoleon and that the politic system just looked stuck, between Monarchy, Republic and Empire One of my favorite book of all times, Stello, explores this melancholy through the life of a poet who tries to find what political system would give him thefreedom Truth is there s none Freedom is in him, in his poetic quality, in his otherness Leonard reminded me of him It s scary how misunderstanding can lead to violence If Leonard wants people around him to be helpless and pathetic, it s only because he is He made me laugh, though what I do have a soft spot for smartasses The Jesus parts were PRICELESS That winged voyager, how weak and gauche he is,So beautiful before, now comic and ugly One man worries his beak with a stubby clay pipe Another limps, mimics the cripple who once flew The poet resembles this prince of cloud and skyWho frequents the tempest and laughs at the bowman When exiled on the earth, the butt of hoots and jeers,His giant wings prevent him from walking. Charles Baudelaire, The Albatros I can t deny that some parts made me feel so much Shivering Tearing up Yet it wavered not my interest, because I was hooked from the beginning and the writing is beautiful but the emotion It was so weird to see that I could connect on such a strong level with Leonard and then just stop Perhaps it was meant to be Perhaps I was way too exhausted Regardless of the reason, it prevented me from completely love Leonard s story, but didn t hide to me how important this story is Let s talk about Leonard s relations with women, okay They made me furious at times A lightning flash then night Fleeting beautyBy whose glance I was suddenly reborn,Will I see you nobefore eternity Elsewhere, far, far from here too late never perhaps For I know not where you fled, you know not where I go,O you whom I would have loved, O you who knew itCharles Baudelaire, To a Passer by Sigh As other reviewers pointed it, Leonard shares a very bad opinion of women in general and doesn t show any respect most of the time Plus, he s a stalker I hated him for it, but as I said earlier, I m not supposed to love him I don t have to condone his actions and his way of thinking, and at no moment did I feel any pressure to do so In my opinion, Quick never intends to redeem him, and I m okay with that My poor Muse, alas what ails you today Your hollow eyes are full of nocturnal visions I see in turn reflected on your face Horror and madness, cold and taciturn. Charles Baudelaire, The Sick Muse Truth be told, I m not sure that this review will help you determine if Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock is for you What can I say I m not even sure it was for me What you need to know is that it s by no means a perfect book, with several characters a little too one dimensional and stereotypical the mother, for example and a male lead you ll perhaps want to strangle sometimes Yet I don t regret reading it, and his story will probably haunt me a long time I d say that it means something, doesn t it First they ignore you, thenthey laugh at you, then theyfight you, then you win PS All the poems are from William Aggeler s translations 1954 , but I strongly advise you to read them in French if you can Forof my reviews, please visit @Free E-pub ⚟ Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock ç Today Is Leonard Peacock S Birthday It Is Also The Day He Hides A Gun In His Backpack Because Today Is The Day He Will Kill His Former Best Friend, And Then Himself, With His Grandfather S PPistolBut First He Must Say Good Bye To The Four People Who Matter Most To Him His Humphrey Bogart Obsessed Next Door Neighbor, Walt His Classmate, Baback, A Violin Virtuoso Lauren, The Christian Homeschooler He Has A Crush On And Herr Silverman, Who Teaches The High School S Class On The Holocaust Speaking To Each In Turn, Leonard Slowly Reveals His Secrets As The Hours Tick By And The Moment Of Truth ApproachesIn This Riveting Look At A Day In The Life Of A Disturbed Teenage Boy, Acclaimed Author Matthew Quick Unflinchingly Examines The Impossible Choices That Must Be Made And The Light In Us All That Never Goes Out Leonard Peacock wants to die But before he commits suicide, he wants to kill somebody Other than himself His former best friend, Archer, for the harm he has caused him in the past Now I don t want to jinx anything perhaps I speak too soon, as this is only my second book read by Matthew Quick but I really do believe that this author is slowly but surely becoming a favourite author of mine.He just KNOWS how to write a novel And his imagination has no boundaries In Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock, he has created not only an authentic, believable teenage boy but also a broken young man who will win your compassion and heart in a single chapter The truth is, Leonard Peacock does not really want to die In fact, he clings to life He hopes someone will give him a reason to stay on this earth He almost begs them to just give him one reason just one reason But he thinks he will never be happy again What an emotional story Do NOT think that this is some kind of mystery, suspense novel Not at all While there is suspense regarding whether he will pull the trigger or not, this is very much a book dealing with mental health and abuse, so definitely of the psychological sort Matthew Quick writes so perfectly This is such an atmospheric book though melancholic There are moments when I felt confused, moments when I smiled in a sad way, moments when I smiled in a very heartfelt, genuine manner and moments when I downright couldn t help but tear up a little This is not a happy book And it does not have a clear, closed ending Many have expressed their disapproval of it I, for one, was shocked to turn the page and see a blank space staring at me But I think I know how it ends, deep inside my heart, and sometimes not always that enough Blog Youtube Twitter Instagram Google Bloglovin This book was heartbreaking but ultimately really enjoyable My only issue was that I felt like the ending didn t give me enough satisfaction for a rounded out story Video review maybe to come Not sure yet. tw antisemitism nazis, suicidal thoughts and actions, depression, rape sexual assaultIt s strange how this book made me feel simultaneously uncomfortable yet touched Leonard Peacock is purposefully an unlikable character, yet as his mental illness and traumatic past is slowly unveiled, you can t help but root for him and his recovery This book nearly tore my heart in half just because of how conflicted I was, but I think that was the point I adored the side characters in this book, and I loved Leonard s narration itself I was definitely crying at the book s climax The storytelling is jarring but honest, and I couldn t put this down My only real critique is that the ending was too abrupt I feel like it needed onechapter or an epilogue for some finality, or at least an indication of what the characters ended up doing after the climax of the book I feel like I still don t quite know if the book ended on a positive or negative note Was that the intention Regardless, i m still wiping mascara smudges off my cheeks from this book I anticipate I ll be thinking about it for some time, wondering what the characters are up to after the ending of the novel. I can definitely see why Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock is such a beloved book I believe many readers will find this novel beautiful and heart breaking and I did too, to a certain extent Though I appreciated many things within this book and even found myself emotionally attached to the main character, there were also quite a few elements that really bothered and hindered me at truly loving this story.The story centres around Leonard Peacock who has decided that he is going to kill himself on his eighteenth birthday On that morning he packs his grandfather s Nazi gun into his backpack and sets out to kill not only himself, but also his classmate and nemesis Asher Beal The story follows him throughout the day, as we slowly learn the reasons behind Leonard s desperation.Leonard s story and his voice appear very honest and raw Some of the issues that are targeted are rare in fiction and very much needed I can t tell you what it is without spoiling The book has many strong points Matthew Quick manages to make situations simultaneously depressing and humorous and the novel asks important questions about morality, responsibility and faith It is also a very engaging story that you will fly through, wanting to know how it ends.And yet, despite all these positive aspects, this book bothered me.My main problem was with the protagonist, Leonard Peacock, himself He is lonely, an outcast, feels out of place Something devastating happened to him years ago and he didn t receive any help He is neglected I feel horrible for saying this, but although I did feel for Leonard and could relate to him somewhat, I could not make myself root for him all the way Leonard Peacock is a stereotype for the suicidal teenager Bullied and misunderstood, very bright but unwilling to apply himself in school However, this wasn t even the reason I struggled with him I disliked him because he was so damn condescending and self absorbed Seriously, Leonard believes himself to be a special snowflake, superior to everyone else In his eyes he can do no wrong If someone disagrees with him, he immediately discredits them I understand that he s had a hard life and is sceptical, but that doesn t justify the way he treats the people around him He classifies everything and everyone and doesn t believe a person could ever truly have good intentions He also completely disregards rules in tests he chooses not to answer multiple choice questions because those are beneath him What s the point in doing something you don t feel like doing I m aware that this might have been the point Leonard is jaded and that is why he sees the world in this light I don t want to undermine the truly horrible things that happened to him, his depression is understandable But I still couldn t get myself to like him.Matthew Quick wants to give us the impression that Leonard is brilliant and mature beyond his years One of the examples he uses is a question raised by Leonard s teacher, Herr Silverman Herr Silverman asks the class what they believe they would have done had they lived during the Second World War in Nazi Germany Would they have followed or defied Hitler Leonard answers this question in his head honestly with I don t know All the other kids in the class however, claim that they would have stood up to Hitler, gone against his ideals etc Now I don t know about you, but if a teacher would have asked my old high school class this question, I can guarantee that all of us would have answered the way Leonard did Which leads to the question Is Leonard truly that smart and mature, or were the other students just portrayed as particularly ignorant to make him look better I also wasn t very happy with how Leonard treated women He meets a girl called Lauren at the train station who is passing out pamphlets on Christianity He finds her attractive and is immediately infatuated with her Since he is the only person who took her pamphlet and actually bothered to talk to her, he somehow believes that he deserves her When he finds out she has a boyfriend he gets angry Leonard also implies that the female teachers are all flirting with the male students When the school counsellor checks up on him, he believes she is actually flirting with him, when really, she says nothing that would justify this claim.The side characters fell flat for me They all seemed very stereotypical Herr Silverman, the perfect teacher Lauren, the unwaveringly devout Christian Linda, the totally careless and absent mother They were all characters I have seen before.Although this review is quite negative, Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock really isn t a bad book I enjoyed it and would recommend it especially seeing how much everyone else seems to love it however, I was somewhat disappointed. a very good quick read re read in 2019ok I ve officially decided that anybody who loves The Perks of Being a Wallflower should actually drop everything and read this book right now first read in 2014Read this book if you want to be very emotionally invested in finding out why a high school teacher doesn t roll up his sleeves.And if you want your heart to cry. I remember the day when Columbine happened Of course, there have been school shootings before, and school shooting since, but as a young teen at the time, Columbine was the event that hit homewhy Because the people involved could easily have been me, or my friends It was so covered by the media, we watched the footage in school, there were counselors, there were added security on my campus, there were a lot of hushed conversations, a lot of adults not knowing how to react, wanting to discuss it, but fearing that they ll overstep.This is a hard review for me to write, because I m not sure how I feel about this book I can relate to him somewhat I know a lot of Leonard Peacocks in high school The bullied, the neglected, the intellectually brilliant, yet unwilling to apply themselves because they don t see the point I can t say whether any of them ever wanted to kill someone That s not something you share with others, not if you want to get arrested in a post Columbine world I feel like Leonard is a cookie cutter stereotype of the kind who could snap He s unlikeable, he s downtrodden at times, but he never felt like a real character, much less someone with whom I could ever feel anything less than apathy and disgust.I m not sure what this book was trying to accomplish Was it trying to make us sympathize with the main character, to understand his life, his mindset, before he sets out to kill Asher It did not convince me.Was there simply no point Maybe it is just the story of a teenager who snapped Maybe we don t have to like the character Maybe this book is just a mere insight into the mind of a below average guy To make us understand that this potential shooter is just like any other self absorbed teenager all around the world albeit one with an automatic and a mission to kill This book is honest with its portrayal of the main character I did not like Leonard, and I did not begin to havedeveloped sympathies towards him until the latter third of the novel It is narrated through a first person point of view, largely composed of Leonard s internal dialogue as he goes through his final day, peppered through with flashbacks as he remembers events and people from the past, and some really weird letters from the future Leonard is not a likeable character at all Yes, he has a sad past, but to what extent does that excuse anything Plenty of us have difficult lives, and have grown up all the stronger for it I m not convinced that is a justification for violence He s got a neglectful, clueless mother, but Leonard has some excellent adult friends and mentors Herr Silverman was a delight He is bullied at schoolsomewhat, and I understand, really.I know what it s like to be bullied Moving to a new country as a child, having a difficult to spell name, learning English, looking like a walking toothpickthose aren t exactly the qualities that made me popular as a child growing up I sympathize with bullying, I really do, but I think it was brushed over too much in this book to make me feel like it was a major issue that ultimately led to Leonard s decision The young women in the news who were bullied to such an extent that they killed themselves That devastated me And while I cannot judge the effects of bullying on every person s state of mind, because everyone perceives and persists through things differently, the bullying was just not well portrayed, and largely glossed over within this book.Leonard isself absorbed and self conscious than a typical teenager He is critical of everyone and everything He is a hypocrite I m not saying that teenagers must be perfect in their actions and their thoughts it is the nature of development that we go through this stage of intense awareness as we grow upbut the things that goes on within Leonard s mind and his actions doesn t exactly endear me to him.One overwhelming impression you get of Leonard is that he asks questions All the time He s like a 3 year old who keeps asking why, why, why He routinely ditches class dozens of time to conduct what he calls practice adulthood days, when he picks a person, stalks them, and seemingly annoys the hell out of him Leonard has a weakness for old fashioned movie starlet types, and during one of his days, he follows a tragic looking woman into an alley and stalks her Then he asks her weird, personal questions, then acts offended when she calls him a pervert.On another day, he comes across another one of his Lauren Bacall types, a home schooled hard core Christian missionary girl who is spouting the gospels of Jesus at people who, frankly, don t give a crap Leonard automatically zeroes in on her, and is determined to win her Like the pretentious, extremely inquisitive little shit that he is, he zeroes in on her, and figures that since he s paying attention to her, since he s singling her out, she should be grateful to him because she owes him something for his expressed interest She kept looking eagerly at the people coming out of the subway station and wasn t really paying me much attention any, which I thought was weird, since I was the only person who had taken her pamphlet You d think she d concentrate on winning me over, rightNaturally, when Lauren doesn t fall for him, he thinks she s an evil femme fatale I felt so tricked by Lauren Being eaten by her was one thing, but introducing me to her boyfriend after she d led me on that was entirely unacceptable She used her femme fatale skills to get me into her church, bait and switch style. He s pretentious, he s entitled He is a special snowflake Leonard doesn t think the rules apply to him It s not just ditching school, it s choosing not to answer the multiple choice questions on a two part exam because he doesn t feel like it He argues with teachers for shits and giggles He shows up to class late He classifies everyone into categories, he never sees the good in things Granted, skepticism is part of growing up, but he just has an overwhelming amount of it The jocks are dumb troglodytes, the smart kids are suck ups The world is inferior to Leonard Peacock.The reveal behind what made him want to kill Asher Beal was devastatingbut the way it was written, the way it was so tightly pushed away by Leonard s narrative didn t make me sympathize with him that much Yes, I know it is a deeply serious problem, but there s a possibly deliberate lack of emotion that kept him at a distance from me, and I still didn t end up completely understanding what ultimately made Leonard snap This book never succeeded in convincing me of anything.Possibly Maybe Perhaps Am I meant to enjoy this book Am I meant to sympathize with Leonard Am I supposed to hate him Maybe that s my problem I enjoy a book that makes me think, but not a book that makes me second guess myself that much There s too many questions in my mind throughout reading this book to make it enjoyable a book doesn t necessarily have to be fun and light to be enjoyable, but this book lacks the quality that absorbs me.