Published: February 1st, 1979
Harold and Maude
By: Colin Higgins
Nineteen-year-old Harold Chasen is obsessed with death. He fakes suicides to shock his self-obsessed mother, drives a customized Jaguar hearse, and attends funerals of complete strangers. Seventy-nine-year-old Maude Chardin, on the other hand, adores life. She liberates trees from city sidewalks and transplants them to the forest, paints smiles on the faces of church statues, and "borrows" cars to remind their owners life is fleeting -- here today, gone tomorrow! A chance meeting between the two turns into a madcap, whirlwind romance, and Harold learns that life is worth living.
Ugh. I know this is a classic, and I have a couple friends that absolutely loved it. Maybe it also doesn't help my opinion that I've never seen the movie? Not sure, but for some reason I'm not at all a fan of this one. It was okay, but overall un-inspiring for me personally.
I found it to be kind of similar to Love Story, in the fact that you can totally tell it was written to be a screenplay. It was never written to just be a book and for me personally, that hurt my enjoyment of it. There was no real flesh to the characters and barely any plot happening. And that freaking ending...
Since when is that the freaking answer? Maybe if I had seen the movie, or read this as a teenager, I'd have had more tolerance for the whole "suicide-star-crossed-age-gap-lovers" thing. But get this: I just didn't. She could have just told him, "Hey yo, I'm way too freaking old for you. Find a nice girl your own age and P.S. I'm going off on further adventures." Instead she committs suicide and Harold learns a nice, neat lesson? FUCKING GAG ME.
VERDICT: 2/5 Stars
*I received this book from Avon Books on NetGalley. No favors or money were exchanged for this review. This book was originally published on February 1st, 1979.*