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Boy Meets Boy - David Levithan

Posted by on July 16, 2011

Synopsis: The story’s narrator is Paul, who, like most teenagers, is preoccupied with love and its attendant feelings. However, Paul is gay. He has “always known it,” and his kindergarten teacher confirmed it on Paul’s report card: “Paul is definitely gay and has very good sense of self.” But in high school, things are a bit more complicated. No, it’s not what you’re thinking. The world in which Paul lives is utterly devoid of homophobia. It’s Paul’s love life that’s complicated. See, Paul finds himself crazy about a new boy, Noah, but is leery of letting his ex-boyfriend, Kyle, know it. Then there’s Paul’s best friend, Joni, who is dating Chuck, whom everyone hates — especially Infinite Darlene, the drag queen who serves as both homecoming queen and star quarterback at Paul’s high school, which gives a whole new meaning to the term “progressive.”

No, this is not your father’s high school! Levithan has created a kind of utopia, where tolerance reigns and shame is banished. But in other ways, the school feels abundantly familiar. A typical day for Paul involves passing secret notes, a between-class rendezvous, clandestine kisses, friendly misunderstandings — all the machinations of high school that seem much more important than plain old academics.

Review: Paul lives in a near perfect world that completely embraces all sexualities. This book has gay boys in it, lesbians, straight kids, bi kids, and even a transexual football star/homecoming queen named Infinite Darlene.

I liked it’s positivity. I loved how cheery and happy this book was. Paul’s life is pretty easy. He has known he was gay ever since he knew was gay meant in kindergarden. His parents are perfectly accepting and his life is pretty stress free. But not everything in is life is easy - there is lots of drama around him.

Paul’s friend Tony doesn’t quite have the same upbringing as his extremely religious parents aren’t accepting of his lifestyle. However, even they end up being a lot more tolerant towards the end of the book than how they started out.

Joni, Paul & Toni’s friend seems to ditch them when she meets a boy, making them wonder if she’s even their friend anymore.

And then there’s the love triangle between Paul, his ex boyfriend Kyle and his new love interest Noah (who sounds totally cute btw). Kyle is continually trying to get Paul to come back to him. Paul isn’t convinced, even though he still cares very much for Kyle. And Noah, everything seems perfect with Noah until he finds out what Paul has done behind his back… is it too late to fix it?

Whilst I loved this book, I loved the characters also (Infinite Darlene is hilarious!) it’s not exactly realistic. I think it’s a popular lesbian/gay book primarily because it’s a nice book to read if you are gay. It’s positive, no one takes issue with gay people.. you can walk down the street holding your boyfriends hand if you want to, which is perfect escapism from reality. Anything that is still frowned upon in society here, is okay in this book. And that’s why I think it is as popular as it is.

Still, reality aside, the book is highly enjoyable and an easy read as well!

Rating: 4 out of 5

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