Will Grayson, Will Grayson
4 journalers for this copy...
I just started reading one copy a few days ago. I'm only through the first few chapters so I'll edit this with my thoughts when I finish the book, but so far I am loving the characters and their voices.
EDIT on December 10, 2009 (just finished reading):
This is the very first advance reader's copy of anything that I actually read before the book came out. 4 months before, actually. It's kind of... well, awesome, like I have all this wisdom that people will soon have but don't have yet because for some reason, fate saw fit to put me in the right place at the right time and hand me this book. But, after reading the book, I'm not all that surprised, because the book is about love and coincidence.
First off, I fell in love with Looking for Alaska and, after reading that, I knew I had to go out and track down everything John Green had ever had published. This is the last of it (so far) though I look forward to reading the final edition (again) when it comes out in April. I even read his short story in Geektastic and am almost done with that collection as well. I liked some stories more than others but one that jumped out at me as especially well-written was one by David Levithan. Then I realized he was the author of Boy Meets Boy which I also read earlier this year. And then I realized that both of these authors were writing Will Grayson, Will Grayson. I was also excited to see John Green dealing with a gay character or two. So I was all set to love this book and really, really hoped it wouldn't disappoint me.
It didn't. Not even close. I LOVED it. I can't even tell you which Will Grayson I liked better because they were both fantastic characters. And not just fantastic, but realistic. And that's what I love the most about John Green's books-- things are so real. It's almost painful how real and honest the emotions and situations and dialogue and interactions are. They make it look so easy here-- like they just listened in on real life and wrote it down. And, as I was reading, multiple times I kept thinking to myself "see, THIS is what makes a good book." The book does AMAZING things without even trying. (Although I know it wasn't that easy to write... it just seems like it because it's SO real). I could easily relate to ALL the characters at one point or another. I've been the person in love with someone online (only to find that it's full of lies). I've been the person ditched by friends. I've been the fallback person. I've been the person who breaks hears. I've been the person to have a broken heart. I've been the bad friend. I've been the good friend. I've been the friend who felt left out because someone didn't confide in me. I've been the person who'll do ANYTHING for friends. I've been depressed. I've been self-absorbed. I've been selfless. I've been everyone in this book to some extent.
The story was fantastic. It was a great mix of predictable and unpredictable. It went all over the place and wound up precisely where I wanted it to be. I couldn't have been happier. I really liked the style and how it jumped back and forth between Wills. Each one had his own distinct way of writing, which was great and made it not only easy to know exactly who was narrating, but also it was a great way to get to know the characters' mindsets.
And the wisdom... is just fantastic. Like the way we use X when we call them exes because that's what it's like-- the two people's paths intersect and then move on their separate ways. Or how you really need to check the year on a fake ID you spend $100 on before you try and use it. Or how we all take the people we love for granted and we don't necessarily appreciate things until they're gone.
But beyond the realness and the wisdom, this book had everything. Fascinating characters, humor, musical numbers, friendship, tension, plenty of sadness, and so much love. The only things that could have made it better would be: a soundtrack so we could hear the music to Tiny Dancer/Hold Me Closer and a script/musical so that people could put on the musical in their own high schools *G* Of course, without Tiny Cooper, it wouldn't be such a success.
Man, I'm with the Wills-- I love Tiny Cooper. Heck, I am very much like Tiny Cooper. And that last scene would have moved me to tears if it had been me (heck, it moved me to tears just reading it). Beautiful book, beautiful characters, beautiful ending.
I picked up this advanced copy as a submission to the first-line challenge being held at the "BCinDC" holiday party in the town of Alexandria, Virginia. I am certainly interested in this read, and will read it as soon as I finish the book I amm on right now.
WILD RELEASE NOTES:
This book is being released at the Panera Bread inside the Ballston Commons Mall in Arlington, Virginia. A meeting of the bookcrossers of the Washington metropolitan area took place here. We gather each month to discuss books, to enjoy each other's company, and of course to leave a few books on purpose for you to find! Read and enjoy!
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