Review: Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan
Author: David Levithan [Website]
Published: September 2003 by Knopf
Format: Hardcover, 185 pages
Source: Bought at a library sale
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.
Cover Art: Cute and simple, just like the story.
David Levithan certainly knows how to write a contemporary novel. The story was simple and adorable and so positive, it was almost unbelievable. The setting is an idealistic town, open to change and has changed for the good of all sexual orientations. The main character, of course, is openly gay and is good with it. Paul, the main character, tells the story from his perspective and the reader gets to know him and watch him develop through to the end of the book. He is such a genuine character, it’s almost difficult to relate to him. He does go through the typical teenage angst that happens in high school, however, his actions and reactions are not always predictable. I liked that a lot.
Levithan’s writing, wow. At times it’s very simplistic, but at others, I felt I needed to search between the lines and go back to English 101 to analyze the real meaning behind the words. He brought the characters to life through their feelings and their experiences. He tells the story through his character and leaves the reader feeling good and happy that everything has moved towards the right direction. Not completely resolved, but getting there.
Even though the plot and entire book is simple in a sense, the story leaves a feel good message and idea that the world CAN be like this. This was written in 2003, the world hasn’t changed much since then. This novel has an extreme idealistic idea, but it would definitely be nice if the ‘real world’ could work its way toward it, if not change altogether.