In the book by Stephen Chbosky, Charlie, the main character, writes letters to a person that he never reveals. He does not really know the person, and does not let the person know who he is. Charlie is a freshman and while he is not the biggest geek in the school, he is by no means popular. He is a wallflower. He is shy, thoughtful, and intelligent beyond his years. Charlie encounters the same struggles that many kids face in high school. Some of these struggles are how to make friends, the intensity of a crush, family tensions, a first relationship, exploring sexuality, and experimenting with drugs. He must also deal with his best friend's recent suicide. There really is not a main story line. It skips around to different situations at different times in his life. Some of the situations that happen throughout the book are: Charlie's friend Patrick being gay and Patrick cannot be open about being a homosexual. Pat likes Brad, one of the popular students on the football team, and Brad dates Patrick for a while but does it secretly. At one point Sam and her boyfriend, Craig, break up and that is devastating for Sam and Charlie. Charlie does not like to see Sam sad, so he gets extremely upset about it. Charlie also goes out with a girl named Mary Elizabeth. He never actually really likes her. These are just a few examples of what goes on throughout the book. .
Charlie has internal and external conflicts. He tries not to like Sam because she has a boyfriend. She told him in the beginning that they would never work out, which changes later on. She realizes that she really loves Charlie and wished that Charlie would have done something about it earlier, when Craig and Sam first broke up. Peer Pressure, doing well in school, being as successful as his older brother, and smoking to fit in or drinking at parties to be with the "in crowd" are a few more conflicts that Charlie, as well as his friends, face.