The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

The book The Outsiders might break your heart, but it will put it back in pieces again. The action, the tragedy, and the heart break are what keep this book in your fingertips. This book is powerful. Your heart will break like branches on trees, but smile like kids in a candy store.

The life of Ponyboy Curtis isn’t your normal teenage life in the 1960’s. Pony has faced some ups and downs at an early age. Ponyboy Curtis and his two brothers, Darry and Sodapop, already lost their parents and have to deal with the Socs. The Socs are the rich kids who wear the nice pants and collared shirts. Well, lucky for the Curtis boys they are the tough guys on the west side of town known as the greasers. If the Socs jumping the greasers just to brighten up their day wasn’t enough Ponyboy takes a wild adventure. Pony and Johnny, another greaser friend, run away to an old, abandoned, church in Windrixville. To make things worse the boys get trapped in the church, finding themselves saving young children’s lives while risking theirs.
There is a lot of action, but there is also a deeper meaning to the book. When Pony meets Cherry (a Socs) he realizes that he isn’t some greaser off the street, like his friends’, he is a dreamer. Both he and Cherry are the kind of people who like to watch sunsets and don’t like to be the tough kids on the block. They didn’t get to choose to be who they are. Cherry will always be a perfect, poodle skirt Socs and Pony will always be a leather jacket kid. They figure out that they were born that way and they have to live that way.
The characters in this book are perfect, like the new spring flowers. Ponyboy is the narrator who is a young teenager still trying to find himself like a bird learning to fly. Sodapop, the middle child in the Curtis family, has a good clean heart. In the beginning of the novel Sodapop is the brother Pony looks up to him as a great role model. Even though he is a high school dropout he still maintains a job and at first Pony really looked up to that. Darry, the oldest in the Curtis family, keeps everyone in line. He is the one to keep Ponyboy straight up right. Even though he yells at Pony, Ponyboy soon realizes that it is all through love. Dally is the tough kid. He’s from New York City where he was a part of a gang and spent a lot of time in prison. Pony has always been scared of him. He was scared of him because Dally was so real. Dally is the real deal to Pony. Pony would never want to make his blood boil. Johnny is friends with the Curtis family. He has big, dark, black eyes and his face shows innocence. The gang has always protected him and kept him out of trouble. After all they’re his only real family that cares about him. His parents could care less about what he was up to or why he was home late. Johnny has a loving, innocent heart that will always stay gold. Two-Bit is also part of the gang. He is really just there for comic relief. With his Mickey Mouse shirt he is not afraid to be himself. We don’t see a lot of Two-Bit, but the guys really enjoy spending time with him.
The Outsiders is a book I highly recommend to all teenagers. It will move you like the leaves on a tree as it emphasizes the importance in life. Teenagers can relate to the lives of these young teens and learn to “stay gold” like Ponyboy. Tears might shed and fists might clench, but this is a book you cannot miss!





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