Monday, 2 January 2012
Will Grayson Will Grayson
Book #1 Will Grayson Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan
I love good young adult (YA) fiction and this book is one such example. Co-authored by two of YA's finest authors it is a triumph of wit, grit and substance. The story is about two boys, from different areas, who both happen to be in the same place for long enough to meet. They are both called Will Grayson. One Will Grayson is authored by John Green (Paper Towns, Looking for Alaska) and the other by David Levithan (Nick and Norah's infinite playlist) and the narrative is told chapter about. The novel explores being gay, being in love, getting through high school and the difficulties associated with the aforementioned things. It's pretty hilarious and I laughed out loud on more than one occasion.
Will Grayson (whose name is always capitalised) is trying to live his life without being noticed, which is hard when your best friend is a 6ft 6" American Football player called Tiny, who is also the gayest boy in school and writing a musical about his life!
will grayson, who is never capitalised (in fact there is no capitalisation in his chapters) is on medication for depression and the only person he has found who understands him is a boy he's friends with online named issac.
I flew through this one, the narrative was witty, the characters completely three dimensional and there were some cracker quotes. My favourite character was a smart indie girl called Jane who makes every scene she is in utterly brilliant. Will Grayson says of her;
"Sometimes I think, like, God, she's superhot and smart and kind of pretentious but the pretentiousness just makes me kind of want her, and then other times I think it's an amazingly bad idea, that dating you would be like a series of unnecessary root canals interspersed with occasional makeout sessions."
and she says of herself;
"'There are probably some girls who don't want guys to show up at their house randomly on a Tuesday night with questions about Edward Schrödinger. I am sure such girls exist. But they don't live at my house.'"
She almost made the book for me! But my favourite quote came near the end;
"This is why we call people exes, i guess -- because the paths that cross in the middle end up separating at the end. it's too easy to see an X as a cross-out. it's not, because there's no way to cross out something like that. the X is a diagram of two paths."
I really loved that, because I've always hated the term ex to describe someone who's been a part of your life. Just because they aren't in your life in the role they once were doesn't mean they aren't important in the story of the person you have become. It's a very sad two letters, like you've lost a part of yourself when the relationship ends. But actually I don't think that's true. I love the image of a relationship being a diagram of two paths, which meet in the middle for a while and then journey on. I found it pretty beautiful if i'm honest. It's not a cross out, it's not a mistake or a failure, it's just a reference point on the path of your life, a map that shows who you've become and how you got to that place.
N.B. I always love reading the acknowledgements page at the end of a book, and hidden in here was one that said; 'we acknowledge that being the person God made you cannot separate you from God's love'
There was no mention of anything like this in the novel itself and I really liked it hidden in here amongst all the others (which are pretty funny).