I think I love the story even more.
While the movie focused on R and Julie's romance, the book allowed more depth into the characters. You find there is more to Julie than a tough girl. She has hopes and dreams and it really comes out in the book. Her dad in the movie is a tough man, so worn down by the world that he has become cold and heartless and in the book it shows you that more in depth.
While rereading, it was great to see lines and scenes that had been directly plucked from the book. But there were also changes from the book to movie that made me wonder. Why did they decide to get rid of R's tie and replace it with a red hoodie? Appeal to the younger audience? Also, when R is taking Julie home, in the book he decides to stop, but in the movie it's her decision. Little changes like that make me wonder why? Why make the change? It seems insignificant and would have been fine left like it was in the book. Maybe it has something to do with audience testing? Or with the adaption to movie, the change was because that's what Julie would have done and not R. I'd love it sit with the screenwriters and pick their brains about tiny changes like that.
There were changes I understood. One was Perry. In the book, pages are devoted to Perry and R's interaction with him. You learn why Perry died in the beginning. The movie didn't have that luxury though. It only had moments to devote to Perry, so showing why he died had to be shown in a few powerful moments. I'm pretty sure that's why they changed his dad's death. That scene in the movie was strong enough to show how broken Perry was where as the book showed his downfall through many scenes. Both ways were heartbreaking.
The biggest change from book to movie was the ending. To me, the main reason for the change was time constraint. Julie and R are running all over the place in the book and they didn't have time in the movie to have them doing that. Then of course there is Julie's dad. That was quiet the change. There is redemption and hope with him - which the movie didn't show through Julie the way the book did. Julie was quite hopeful in the book and like I said, the movie focused more on the budding romance. I liked the movie ending as much as the book's ending. Of course, the very end is spot on with R and his name.
Overall, I highly recommend both. The book creates a world that is amazing to get lost in and the movie does a wonderful job of painting that world. Oh, I hear there will be more books and there is a prequel out now. I squeed a little when I discovered that. I think it's safe to say I'm totally Team R. ^_~