I saw the movie decades ago. It remains fuzzily in my mind. Most people, it seems, have seen the film. But it seems odd to have seen the film so long ago and have never read the book. Anyway, I did, and it's really not that great of a book. My kids went through it with me as well, and they at least were quiet enough to listen, but it was no thrilling tale. The writing is actually rather bland, and one wonders why society seems to widely and readily read it as core ficiontal literature. Perhaps because the lessons to be learned? Something like: you have a brain, heart, and courage, so use them, and you might just be surprised at the good in life you can do.