This book was originally recommended by one of my English teachers. After reading it, I soon understand why it is so classic and popular especially among younger generation.
Firstly, it is easy to read and hold my attention throughout. The writing is simple but pure. Hinton wrote it at the age of sixteen. The story line was well-developed with conflict climax, sad ending and personal empathy.
Secondly, it's scarily realistic. While adults tend to sugarcoat bitterness of real life, Hinton uncovers it through a fourteen year-old boy's point of view. There were two different groups in a small town in Oklahoma, greasers and socs. They represent gaps between poor & rich, popular & outsiders. I admire Hinton's insight and courage to write it down. Every adult used to be teenager and he shouldn't pretend social status gap exists in teenagers' world.
My favorite quote is a conversation between Ponyboy (the greaser boy) and Cherry (the Soc's girl)
"Can you see the sunset real good from the West side?" Pony boy asked.
"Real good" Cherry answered.
"You can see it good from the East side, too" Ponyboy said quietly.