Authors: John Green & David Levithan
Usually miles separate two complete strangers, both by the name of Will Grayson, but living quite different lives. What are the chances they would ever run into each other? Even more, what are the chances they would both find themselves heavily influences by the same person? To one Will, Tiny Cooper is a life-long best friend, like it or not. To the other, Tiny is his first boyfriend, the bright person who penetrated the darkness of his deep depression. To both Wills, Tiny is an important friend–one who showed them a clearer picture of what love is truly about. And the way they unite to repay some of their debt to Tiny is nearly as spectacular as the autobiographical musical he created.
Will Grayson, Will Grayson is an intriguing two-voiced story. It’s the first time I’ve read anything of John Green’s, although I’ve enjoyed several stories by David Levithan before. They work well together, crafting a united story with two very distinct characters and writing styles. It works remarkably well–both Will’s write in first person, so the differentiation of styles is helpful. I think the writing styles depict the inner character of the Will’s nicely as well, particularly Levithan’s Will who is depressed and lonely–he writes entirely in lowercase and records conversations as though they were in a play (will: yadda, yadda, yadda. tiny: yadda, yadda. etc.). I think it’s intriguing how Tiny (not a title character at all) is really the mover/shaker character of the whole story–seriously, one of the biggest, gayest, most emotionally honest and effusive characters ever. He’s kind-of larger-than-life, but again, that works with the story; he contrasts with the more timid, dark characters of both Wills. The whole story is like that: silly, painful, absurd, dark, such a contrast of ups and downs that I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry (and often ended up doing both). And mixed in are those moments of such poignant clarity that I just want to shout “Yes!” out loud. Very interesting. I’d recommend Will Grayson, Will Grayson to those who want a good story, but also something more, a good challenge to re-evaluate yourself. Ages 16+.