Posted in Book Reviews, Fiction

Book Review: The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick

Star Rating: 3/5
Title: The Silver Linings Playbook
Author: Matthew Quick
Publisher: Picador
Pages: 289
Genre: Contemporary, Mental Health, Mystery

Meet Pat. Pat has a theory: his life is a movie produced by God. And his God-given mission is to become physically fit and emotionally literate, whereupon God will ensure a happy ending for him — the return of his estranged wife Nikki. (It might not come as a surprise to learn that Pat has spent time in a mental health facility.) The problem is, Pat’s now home, and everything feels off. No one will talk to him about Nikki; his beloved Philadelphia Eagles keep losing; he’s being pursued by the deeply odd Tiffany; his new therapist seems to recommend adultery as a form of therapy. Plus, he’s being hunted by Kenny G!

I’m going to start this review off by saying that this cover is literally the ONLY film cover I have actually liked, in fact I would even go as far as to say that I prefer this cover to the original!

Most people have heard of this, in fact most people have probably seen the film but not read the book. I was one of the people who had watched the film which then lead me to read it. When I saw the trailer for this film it seemed like a typical cliche romcom, which made me not want to watch it at all. But, my friend Ren said that I should because it focuses on mental illness. I tell you now the trailer does not do this movie justice! Straight after I decided I wanted to read the book, and oh wow was I shocked at the differences between the book and the film, I HIGHLY recommend that you read this book before you watch the film, it has so much more mystery, so much more suspense and you’re constantly asking questions through-out. But I think that, because I had already seen the film it took the enjoyment out of the book and I really regret watching the film first.

So I know you are probably wondering by now, so what is this about? Well, the main character is called Pat (played by Bradley Cooper in the film) and he comes out of a psychiatric hospital to live with his parents, he’s a completely changed man compared to what he was before and he decides to try and find a “silver lining” to everything, hence the name. His main goal throughout this whole entire book is to try and win back his wife, Nikki, whom he has had “apart time” from, as he calls it. He’s then introduced to Tiffany (played by Jennifer Laurence in the film) who basically is quite a dangerous person for Pat, because his family are trying to protect him from all sorts of secrets that have occurred whilst he was in the psychiatric hospital and there is the worry that his new found friendship could make all these secrets come out.

What I like about this book is not just the fact that it’s about mental illness, but also the fact that we only know as much as Pat does, everything is revealed to us just as Pat finds things out, which makes you feel as though you are on a journey with him, his journey to get better if you like.

Obviously, I already knew all these secrets and none of them really shocked me except from those that were changed in the film.

You are probably wondering, how come you only gave the book 3 stars if you enjoyed it so much? Well, a book only gets 5 stars from me if I find it hard to put down and am constantly picking the book up again to try and find out what happened. Whilst I did find this book hard to put down, I wasn’t picking it up that often and it took me a while to finish, though I do think this could be due to the fact that I already knew all the secrets because of the film. And the other tiny little gripe I had with the book was the amount American football was spoken about, I’m from the UK so I didn’t understand these parts very well and of course I’m not really that into sports anyway, so I found myself zoning out whenever this was dragged on too much, but I knew how much of a role this played in Pat’s life that I felt like it was needed, but it was slightly overdone.

In short, go read this, BEFORE you watch the film.I feel like the book and the film were entirely different things and the book, in my opinion, is far better. And boy do I wish I had read the book first.

What did you think of this book? How do you think it compares to the film? Let me know!

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