Maine Wedding Photographer | Kate Crabtree Photography »

  • Kate Crabtree is an award winning Maine wedding photographer who creates evocative and timeless wedding photography for couples who would like their love story to be told authentically. Although she is located in Bangor, Maine (central Maine), she happily travels to coastal and southern Maine, and throughout New England to capture unique wedding photos and engagement portraits. She has been featured on Style Me Pretty, recently named as one of the top 50 wedding photographers in the United States by Weddzilla, and published in Maine Magazine, Seacoast Weddings, and Real Maine Weddings.

Last Sunday I made the hour trek to Waterville’s Railroad Square Cinema with Tony to meet up with our mutual friend, Brian, who’s as much of (if not more) of a film fanatic than Tony.  I always feel a little lost during these meetups, as my knowledge of movies doesn’t quite compare to their complex understanding of the film canon, but I manage to muddle along because of the couple of film classes I took in college and my literature background.

I was especially excited about Sunday’s movie date because we were going to see The Perks of Being a Wallflower.  I had read the novel several years back and didn’t remember a lot about it except that I enjoyed it.  And, because I’m a huge Harry Potter fan, I couldn’t wait to see Emma Watson in a new role (she plays the protagonist’s best friend/love interest, Sam).

Guys, I loved the film so much that I rushed to reread the book and finished it early this morning as I watched the election results trickle in.  So, first, before I wax poetic about the novel, GO WATCH THE MOVIE AND READ THE BOOK!  So good!  Eee!  (See?  I’ve been reduced to one-syllable squeals, so both are obviously awesome).

So, let us now chat about the novel.

As Charlie begins his first year of high school, he feels alone, as his best friend, Michael, recently committed suicide.  As The Perks of Being a Wallflower progresses, which is told through letters to an unknown person, we watch Charlie struggle and attempt to find his footing as he makes friends and tries to navigate the social scene in high school.  Although Charlie is certainly witty, thoughtful, and intelligent, he’s not exactly a genius when it comes to understanding social situations, and it’s both painful and familiar to see him fumble and attempt to be an acceptable and understandable person to others.

Although he’s often accepted (he’s lucky to have found a social circle of “misfits” who care dearly for him), he’s not always understood.  Charlie is working through a lot of “little secrets” that have slowly accumulated within him throughout his life. To say more would spoil the book, so I leave it up to you to find out what I’m talking about!

I find that many novels I read are strongest in their plot and not so much in capturing a specific three dimensional voice.  But Charlie has such a charismatic voice and presence that you can’t help but be swept up in his pain, pleasure, confusion, and validation.  He is emotional without being emo, and he embodies adolescence so perfectly that you can’t help but reflect on your own experience in high school.

Although I’m a book person at heart, I’ll forgive you if you go see the movie instead, because it’s done so well and keeps the book’s best interests at heart.  I’ll love you even more if you read the book AND see the film (and I’ll give you a high five the next time I see you!)

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Remember when I used to post Wordie Wednesdays once a week?  Yeah, those were good days.  Certainly, it hasn’t been for lack of reading– this year has been exceptionally full of good books that I can’t wait to share with you all– but I turned my focus on getting my clients’ photos finished as quickly as possible.  Now that things are slowing down as winter approaches, I’ll make sure to make Wordie Wednesdays a more regular thing, because I ever so adore writing about books that really make my heart soar and flip and other cliche things that hearts sometimes do.

As I’ve mentioned time and time again, I’m a rather big Young Adult lit buff, and try to read as many books from the Printz Award list every year (it’s an award presented to the top YA titles every year, and I find most books on the list to be quite deserving of being distinguished). I had only read one of the 2012 winners (Why We Broke Up, which I found disappointing), so Tony picked up Where Things Come Back for me, which, thankfully, was all kinds of brilliant.

Where Things Come Back is interspersed with two narratives.  The first, narrated by high school senior Cullen Witter, tells a heartwrenching tale of the disappearance of his brother, Gabriel.  The second, narrated by a similarly-aged teen named Benton Sage, is trying to find his place in life and his understanding of religion while doing missionary work in Africa.  These two tales eventually collide together in a way that is absolutely fascinating and explores second chances and how interpretation and understanding of just about anything largely depends on one’s own perspective.  I wish I could share more, but to do so will take away from the magic of this novel that was actually written by an under-30 first-time novelist (high five, Whaley!)  Both story lines were equally engaging and kept me reading until late at night, a sure sign that I’m absolutely loving a book.  I haven’t even addressed the mysterious Lazarus Woodpecker, which I hope will be even more incentive to pick up the book (because books with woodpeckers are clearly intriguing, right?)

I’ll leave you with a quote which cuts me to the quick and speaks to the heart of the novel: “When I asked him the meaning of life, Dr. Webb got very quiet and then told me that life has no one meaning, it only has whatever meaning each of us puts on our own life” (227).   I wish I could quote more of this passage, but it would ruin the whole reading experience for you.  Make sure to tell me what you thought of Where Things Come Back once you’ve read it (because you’re going to pick it up, right??)

 

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