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The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

Review by Anna

the outsiders book cover

S.E. Hinton’s well known novel, The Outsiders, talks about the story of Ponyboy, the main character, and the troubles he faces. The events in time which are troubling and hard to him, allows him to grow mature and to develop in understanding.

 The setting takes place in the 1960s, where Ponyboy lives in a town separated into two dominant social classes, the Greasers and the Socs. The Greasers, in which Ponyboy was a part of, represented the poverty-stricken and poor individuals who lived in the East Side. The Socs, short for Socials, were the complete opposite of the Greasers. They were the wealthy individuals of the West Side. 

From this, It is simply fascinating how S.E. Hinton paints a picture through words, of the struggles in which the Socs and the Greasers faced from having tension with each other and the internal conflicts they confronted. This novel mainly follows the events and difficult decisions in which Ponyboy experiences as well as the rationale behind each character’s behavior. If you are looking for a book in which you gain much rich knowledge from, this is the right book for you.

Ponyboy experiences many times of growth throughout the story including hardships and miscommunication within his family, death, and understandment with the Socs. This is not something every normal teenager faces. From fearing and loathing the Socs, Ponyboy gradually begins to understand them. Spoiler alert: Ponyboy also witnesses the death of two individuals who were especially important. This further allows him to further progress in changing his life and mindset forever. This is not all that Ponyboy experiences, but he also experiences many more that is shown throughout the novel. 

This story also mentions an important point about background. Every character, everyone, has a background story. In The Outsiders, we see this with Ponyboy, his friends who are a part of the Greasers gang, and also the Socs.

The Outsiders, often brings in mind the question of whether each character’s actions are right or wrong. It also focuses on the perspective and point of view from each character.

I personally really enjoy how the book is able to allow the reader to develop understandment and to seek perspectives of different individuals. This book also discusses some problems presented throughout the course of history with different ranges of lessons. I appreciate how S.E. Hinton creates the plot so that it leads the reader to follow the storyline and anticipate for what is to happen next in the story. The book is set in the 1960s so understanding some of the terms in the novel may sometimes be difficult or confusing, but it can be a great source of a way to learn them.


In conclusion, the novel The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton offers a wide range of different lessons shown upon the written text that all contribute to a growing mindset. There are just way too many important topics and discussions that this book offers. The Outsiders is a novel that will further enhance one’s reading analysis and one’s life. This is an important and emotional story in which those who read it will have it remembered in their minds. I think highly of this book because of some of the problems it addresses and how the storyline really captivates the reader. I highly recommend this novel to anyone who is bored or looking for an emotional rollercoaster ride!

Check out The Outsiders from the Newport Beach Public Library.

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