Hello, everybody! As you may know from my previous posts, I haven't been doing well about the 2017 Diverse Reads Challenge - I had a very detailed plan, but I haven't managed to follow it through so far, so I am a few months behind schedule. Two Boys Kissing, by David Levithan is the book I was meant to read in July, but because I swapped the book I planned to read for the month of June to a different one, and the topic was the same for both June and July, I ended up reading it for the month of June (although I read it in July). I am getting back on track, though. When this post goes live I will probably have read the book for the month of July as well (and maybe even August, who knows :P).
Anyway, Two Boys Kissing is a contemporary YA about homosexuality, about transsexualism, about finding oneself, about love, about friendship, about achieving one's goals, ... This book covers so many important topics it's hard not to tell people to read it just for that. But let's see what else it has to offer ;)
In case you haven't noticed, the topic for the month of June was:
Sexuality and Gender Identity
"New York Times bestselling author David Levithan tells the based-on-true-events story of Harry and Craig, two 17-year-olds who are about to take part in a 32-hour marathon of kissing to set a new Guinness World Record—all of which is narrated by a Greek Chorus of the generation of gay men lost to AIDS.
While the two increasingly dehydrated and sleep-deprived boys are locking lips, they become a focal point in the lives of other teen boys dealing with languishing long-term relationships, coming out, navigating gender identity, and falling deeper into the digital rabbit hole of gay hookup sites—all while the kissing former couple tries to figure out their own feelings for each other." (Goodreads)
I had only read Will Grayson, Will Grayson that was (co)written by David Levithan, and I found it funny that the two books I read by this author were about the same topic. Apparently, (I found out yesterday, don't kill me) all the books he writes are LGBT, which is a striking characteristic, to start with. Definitely great to expand your diverse reads horizon!
I really enjoyed this novel. Not due to its writing, which was nothing out of the ordinary although the special formats he uses some times do catch your attention and do have the effect they are expected to have on you - which is always a great quality. No, not due to its writing, but because of the story it tells. This novel is narrated from the perspective of a whole generation of gay men that died due to AIDS, which let me tell you is absolutely creative and relevant. This book is about two boys kissing, but we really follow multiple gay and transgender boys in different life situations, and it's amazing how real those stories are. We're told about their feelings, their suffering, their worries and their struggles, and it all just feels true.
The character development could be better, but their stories stick around and you love them nonetheless. They make good decisions and bad decisions, and you suffer and are joyful with them. It definitely gives you a much-needed glance into the LGBT from the inside.
In my opinion, a very important as well as enjoyable read. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.
I would really love more recommendations on LGBT+ books! Leave them down below if you've got any :)
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