Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

January 20, 2014
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Better get ready for the flaming hate mail – I did not like Will Grayson, Will Grayson. Actually, let me rephrase that: I didn't like it as much as John Green's and David Levithan's other books. Don't get me wrong: when I heard this novel was written by two of my favorite authors, I was instantly curious. And when I heard the premise, I wanted to shout “bravo!”

In the suburbs of Chicago live two teenage boys named Will Grayson (to differentiate, I will refer to one as Will Grayson and the other as will grayson). Will Grayson is straight, with a gay best friend named Tiny, while will grayson is depressed and in the closet. By chance they meet one night, and their lives change as they help Tiny with the premiere of a musical at Will's school.

When I heard this premise, I was expecting the book to be about Will Grayson and will grayson talking to one another about their struggles and fixing each other's faults and problems. I was expecting one Will to learn from the other, like the Colonel and Pudge in Looking for Alaska or A. and Rhiannon from Every Day. But instead, they meet face-to-face just two times in the novel. Wouldn't it have been more interesting if the book was about them learning from each other, or if Will helped will with his depression and closeted life? Instead, the story centers on their love lives. I was really expecting more.

All right, I've bashed it enough. Did I actually hate this book? Not really.

I liked the characters. I love Will and how he deals with his own love life and that of his best friend. And I especially love will as he steps out of the closet and starts to see the silver lining beyond his depression. And I really love the message this book has about not just homosexuality but love in general. And do I even have to talk about the pacing and writing style?

What's the verdict? Of all the books by Green and Levithan, this is the worst. It almost works. While I was expecting more, I can't deny a lot of work was put into Will Grayson, Will Grayson. Is it a book I'd read again? No, but I'm glad I read it. That's just my opinion. Go form your own!

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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