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Stay e-gold, Ponyboy: 'The Outsiders' becomes an e-book

May 15, 2012 | 12:00 pm

Cast from the 1983 film version of "The Outsiders."

This year marks the 45th anniversary of the publication of S.E. Hinton's book "The Outsiders." To celebrate, Penguin is releasing the story of the boys from the wrong side of the tracks for the first time as an e-book.

Hinton began writing the book while she was still a high school student in Tulsa, Okla."It was the year I was 16 and a junior in high school that I did the majority of the work (that was the year I made a D in creative writing)," she said in an interview on a website dedicated to "The Outsiders" book and film. "One day, a friend of mine was walking home from school and these 'nice' kids jumped out of a car and beat him up because they didn't like him being a greaser. This made me mad and I just went home and started pounding out a story about this boy who was beaten up while he was walking home from the movies — the beginning of 'The Outsiders.'" The novel was published by Viking when she was a freshman at the University of Tulsa, in 1967. She later published "That Was Then, This is Now," "Rumblefish" and "Tex," among other novels.

The book "The Outsiders" was adapted for the screen in 1983. Director Francis Ford Coppola cast a stellar group of mostly up-and-coming young actors that included Rob Lowe, Matt Dillon, Emilio Estevez, and Tom Cruise. Ralph Macchio played the ill-fated Jonny and C. Thomas Howell his friend, the narrator Ponyboy.

In its press release about the e-book edition of "The Outsiders," Penguin notes that there are more than 14 million copies of the book in print, making it the bestselling young-adult novel of all time. Its e-book edition is available for $9.99.


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Photo:  From the 1983 film "The Outsiders"; from left, Emilio Estevez, Rob Lowe, C. Thomas Howell, Matt Dillon, Ralph Macchio, Patrick Swayze and Tom Cruise. Credit: Associated Press