Sunday, November 3, 2013

Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan - Paul's REVIEW

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Title: Boy Meets Boy
Author: David Levithan
Year Published: 2005


Synopsis: This is the story of Paul, a sophomore at a high school like no other: The cheerleaders ride Harleys, the homecoming queen used to be a guy named Daryl (she now prefers Infinite Darlene and is also the star quarterback), and the gay-straight alliance was formed to help the straight kids learn how to dance. 

When Paul meets Noah, he thinks he’s found the one his heart is made for. Until he blows it. The school bookie says the odds are 12-to-1 against him getting Noah back, but Paul’s not giving up without playing his love really loud. His best friend Joni might be drifting away, his other best friend Tony might be dealing with ultra-religious parents, and his ex-boyfriend Kyle might not be going away anytime soon, but sometimes everything needs to fall apart before it can really fit together right.

This is a happy-meaningful romantic comedy about finding love, losing love, and doing what it takes to get love back in a crazy-wonderful world.


Review: The beginning didn't feel like a David Levithan novel. His books always have been so grounded and real to me. This started out kind of ridiculous and outrageous. Many of the characters were larger than life. The city it takes place in also seemed nonrealistic. The high school contains a cheerleader biker gang, a high school cover band, and a few drag queens. All of the high school characters seem very sure of themselves. It felt like adult situations just transplanted into a high school and even earlier with stories that go as far back as elementary school. But I think Levithan did this all purposefully. 

About 80% into the book I finally understood why Levithan created a world like this. With the protagonist "having it easy" it creates a unique lens to look at other gay youth in different situations. The chapter entitled "Tony" had me on the verge of tears.

This was David Levithan's first published book and I think you can tell. Many of his signatures are just beginning to emerge. The wit and charm of his writing are there. Unique, quirky, and random still describes his writing, but his writing has grown in his more recent books. 

I did enjoy this book and I give it a 4/5. But, if you are looking for a modern gay story you should read "Two Boys Kissing".  If you are looking for depth and conversations of sexuality, gender, and individuality you should read "Every Day". I will continue to consume as much of David Levithan's writing as I can.


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