Just as sickly funny and depraved as the film, but with a bit heart Easy read. Maybe that s what we look for in the people we love, the spark of unhappiness we think we know how to extinguish Tom Perrotta, ElectionOh wow was this ever so much better then the movie I had already seen the movie, did not like it all that much and had low expectations going in I was pleasantly surprised This was such a good book made all the better by the humor sprinkled throughout Somehow the book works in a way I do not think the movie really did.Things that were annoying in the film I found amusing here And even though there were certain aspects of it that were funny, it was a pretty serious book combining character studies, High school, elections and the price of winning at all costs, with some very good..great..writing I thoroughly enjoyed this and really recommend it. A Brilliantly Funny Novel From The Author Of The Abstinence Teacher And Little Children , Made Into An Acclaimed Film Starring Reece Witherspoon And Matthew BroderickTracy Flick Wants To Be President Of Winwood High She S One Of Those Ambitious Girls Who Finds Time To Do It All Edit The Yearbook, Star In The School Musical, Sleep With Her English Teacher Staunch Idealist, Jim McAllister Aka Mr M Thinks The Students Deserve Better So He Persuades Paul Warren A Well Liked, Good Hearted Jock To Run As Well But That Puts Paul S Sister, Tammy, In A Snit So She Runs Too, On An Apathy Platform Before Starting A Real Campaign To Get Herself Kicked Out Of SchoolThe Idea Was To Educate The Students Of This Suburban New Jersey School In The Democratic Process And The American Way But With All The Sex Scandals, Smear Campaigns And Behind The Scenes Powerbrokers At Winwood High, It Doesn T Look As If They Need Any Lessons A pitiful and unhinged man does everything in his power to make sure that a female candidate loses an election Why does that sound so familiar Tom Perrotta s Election is one of those stories that has done far better as a film than it has as a novel The film has become one of those 90s classics which has managed to seep into popular culture whilst the character of Tracy Flick has very much become a cultural icon, joining the ranks of Cher Horowitz and Nancy Downs Tracy Flick is the name on everyone s lips in this novel, but she rarely appears to give her side of the story.The novel revolves around a high school presidential election Tracy Flick is running unopposed and is clearly the best student for the job That is until Mr M interferes Mr M despises Tracy because she got his best friend fired and thus he plots to make sure that Tracy does not become president.He convinces Paul Warren, the most popular guy in the school, to also run for president and thus the brutal presidential race begins.Tracy Flick is honestly one of the greatest characters created in the last thirty years Her take no prisoners approach to life and relentless perfection are so enjoyable to read and, on some levels, relate to Her searing brilliance is so perfectly contrasted in the character of Mr M, who is essentially a human skid mark Mr M dominates the novel as much as he dominates the election He gets the most vignettes and we spend the most time with him, which really allows our hatred of him to slowly build up throughout this short work As a mentioned before, Tracy, despite being the star of this novel, receives the fewest and shortest vignettes if you discount the few vignettes from the janitor near the end of the novel Perrotta s effective silencing of Flick s narrative mirrors Mr M s effort to silence Flick in everything she does The novel is masterfully constructed and Perrotta really does well working with the difficult vignette structure Those of us familiar with how the film version of Election ends will be surprised at just how differently the novel finishes The novel s ending is far bleak and unrelenting The film attempts to somewhat pardon Mr M for his actions, whilst the novel gives a far realistic ending for both Mr M and Tracy Overall I enjoyed Election and I m looking forward to being able to say well ACTUALLY, in the original novel the next time someone discusses the film with me Yup, I m that guy. Since early high school, I ve read this book four times twice in high school itself, once in early college, and again this year While I don t want to sell young me short, I m pretty sure a lot of the reason I loved it in high school was the scandal a lesbian relationship AND a teacher student relationship and perhaps even , Perrotta s black humor I still like both of those things about it today, but I also recognize how bleakly human it is Like a grotesque circus Or just a regular circus, since the circus is inherently sort of grotesque I think there s a word for what I m trying to describe that doesn t carry with it the claustrophobic, put upon implications of Kafkaesque, but I can t think of it right now One thing that was really neat to notice, reading it again years after my first reads and re reads, was how scenes and bits of dialogue have ingrained themselves in my consciousness Like, I ve internalized and thought about from time to time the part where Paul and his father are talking about his father s mistress whom his father is in love with She s fat I just blurted it out.He nodded I thought I d be disgusted by her body, but I wasn t I was moved, Paul By the sight of her Or Tracy resenting Paul and Lisa s PDAs, how they kiss in front of everyone like they get nourishment from each other s tongues This book is so damn good at capturing the awkwardness and the whole body burst of teenage lust, like Lisa s fire in the chest when Tammy tells her she s so pretty expanded out over 200 pages Note The movie is also a favorite and scenes from that have stuck with me forever More than any other is the montage where Tammy s falling in love with the girl from Catholic school I think her name is Jenny it s not the Dana of the book, I know that much and they re swinging together and smoking pot together and laughing and Donovan s Jennifer Juniper is playing A sweeter side of the book s teenage lust, but also so very accurate. I am going through my Tom Perrotta phase I held off on this one, because I loved the movie As much as I loved the movie, I have to admit that the book was better, as usually is the case In defense of the movie, it s a pretty decent adaptation and where is strays from the book, only make the movie stronger.The characters in the book are much sympathetic, especially Tracy and Mr M I also preferred the ending in the book, it brought the story full circle The ending in the movie in funny, but in the book it s meaningful and has substance As usual, Perrota does a great job with final paragraphs Even though it ended on the perfect note, I wanted When I first saw the movie back in the 1990s, I hadn t embraced my dark side yet I thought it was depressing and left me with the feeling of, Now what Of course, as I grew older, I realized that not everything has a happy ending And I learned how to make fun of the bad parts of life So when I picked up Election in a bookstore a few years ago, I figured I d give it a go Very smart move on my part.Election is an interesting spin for Perrotta it s the only novel he has written where the P.O.V alternates between characters He keeps it fresh, refusing to repeat the same scenario through different voices, a problem that several authors encounter when they try to switch up the narrators No, Perrotta makes it believable when he goes from Mr M to Mr M s mortal enemy , Tracy Flick The basic plotline itself is a little bizarre a high school Government teacher determined to take the school s most ambitious and cutthroat student down a few pegs, eventually bringing it down to a simple election that goes completely awry And of course, adding a few extra characters the sweet but dumb football player Paul who runs for Class President against Tracy,his sister Tammy who runs against him, and Tammy s former lover Lisa who decides to prove she s not a lesbian by chasing after Paul and it makes for a chaotic but interesting read Not very long, it s a book I finished in hours I re read it at least once a year Definitely recommended. I picked this up because I love the movie It turns out that the movie is a very faithful adaptation As it, if you ve done one, you really don t need to try the other, unless you re just curious I was, and I wound up liking the book just about as much. The logistics of a high school election are no laughing matter At the same time you re educating your students about democracy, you re working to safeguard the process against fraud It s sad but true given half a chance, most kids will cheat to win They re a lot like adults in this respect Mr M I ve never seen the movie adaptation of Election, but I understand that a lot of its cult followers can be likened to Rush enthusiasts Winwood High School is an anonymous high school, in a generic small town, where most people seem to be interested in high school sports and getting into a good college, rather than the upcoming presidential election.The graduating class of 93 is in the midst of its own class president election, and little does anyone realize that it will set into motion a series of events that will change the lives of quite a few people, especially Mr M s Perrotta s use of alternating points of view is one of his best writing gifts In Election, he does a wonderful job of isolating the labels the jock, the outcast, most likely to succeed, adulterer, etc The reader is able to glimpse events through each individual s sober, unreliable vantage point However, it s the clarity of assessment from others points of view of these same characters that really bring to light what makes each of them do what they do It s ingenious It was something that had never occurred to me before she was unhappy On stage that afternoon, this simple fact struck me with the unmistakable force of truth Tracy Flick needed someone to cheer her up So did Lisa, now that I thought about it so did Tammy and my mother and my father Maybe that s what we look for in the people we love, the spark of unhappiness we think we know how to extinguish Paul Warren, Class of 93 Presidential Candidate I really enjoyed this book Perrotta is dark humor and irony at its best, but after consideration, I came to realize that it s a deceptively light read There s a message in here for everyone For myself I remember feeling a lot like Mr.M at the onset of the novel in the past, having a restlessness about life, where it was headed, and if this is what I was meant to be doing forever Although I m happy now, I can t help but look back and think that I was doing something meaningful with my life, and at least I was making a difference to some people, if even on a small scale Why are we so quick to discredit our efforts Ah, tis imperfection, I guess That should have been a happy time in my life I had a good job, an apparently solid marriage, and an easy, unthinking faith in my own good judgment and moral integrity Right now, that seems like than enough to ask for. High school senior Tracy Flick wants to be School President but faces opposition from the school s most popular jock, Paul Warren, and bitter middle aged teacher, Mr M, in the lead up to the election Who will win Tracy or Paul Tom Perrotta s novel is fine It s a well written, fast paced story that manages to effortlessly draw you in despite the seemingly ordinary narrative that in itself shows the talent Perrotta has And yet it s a very shallow book The story is too light What s it about besides a silly school election The entwining of sex and politics the book was written during the Clinton administration A look at sex in contemporary or at least 90s America A commentary on male teachers and female students, a subtle portrait of a middle aged man sexually frustrated over the unobtainable, attractive young girl A vague satire on the 92 election I have no idea it s that unimpressive I understood some of the characters motivations but they felt trivial and some storylines, like Tammy s, meandered hopelessly and went nowhere She figured out she liked girls, transferred to Catholic school, and that s it Election is a quick, easy read and Perrotta s high quality writing has convinced me to try books by him but it s an eminently forgettable and insubstantial novel It s been many years since I saw it but I d say the Reese Witherspoon Matthew Broderick movie is much better than its source material.
Tom Perrotta is the bestselling author of nine works of fiction, including
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