Sunday, January 22, 2012

Review: ‘Will Grayson Will Grayson’ by John Green & David Levithan

“One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, Will Grayson crosses paths with . . . Will Grayson. Two teens with the same name, running in two very different circles, suddenly find their lives going in new and unexpected directions, and culminating in epic turns-of-heart and the most fabulous musical ever to grace the high school stage. Told in alternating voices from two YA superstars, this collaborative novel features a double helping of the heart and humor that have won them both legions of fans.”
(Amazon product description)

Will Grayson, Will Grayson

Upon closing this book when I was finished, I wanted to jump up and sign really loudly.  What an uplifting story!  It reminded me of a modern day John Hughes movie in the tradition of Ferris Bueller and The Breakfast Club

WG^2 was such a fun story with quirky, yet lovable characters and a really beautiful message.  No character is fully good or bad, and the authors did a great job in staying away from stereotypes.  Will Grayson number one is a heterosexual boy who’s best friend is the giant homosexual teddy bear, Tiny.  As pessimistic Will is, Tiny matches him in exuberant optimism.  Out of all of the characters, it is Tiny who upstages the others in every scene.  He is one of the most unique and self-confident characters I’ve read in young adult literature. 

Through a chance encounter at a porn shop, the pair is introduced to the second Will Grayson.  You might think having two central characters with the same name would be confusing, but the execution of this novel is so brilliantly done, that I never lost track of who was who.  In fact, I don’t know if this book could have been pulled off so well had there only been one author writing it.  The two writing styles added to the distinct voices of the two narrators. 

The story itself covers several heavy topics--cyber-bullying, teen homosexuality, love, mental illness and the meaning of friendships.  But this is far from a heavy story.  Many times while reading I found myself smiling, and several times I even laughed out loud.  (The screw up with Will Grayson #1’s fake ID is priceless!) 

I can’t recommend this book enough!  The story is beautiful and touching.  The moral lessons taught about friendship and appreciation are big take-away’s.  There is a little bit of profanity used, but I don’t think any more than you might expect from normal teenagers.  

Overall, I give Will Grayson Will Grayson...

Plot - 5 bookmarks
Character Development - 5 bookmarks
Message/Lessons - 5 bookmarks
Humor - 5 bookmarks
Dream Cast (otherwise known as who I pictured while reading) - Lucas Till (Will Grayson #1), Anton Yelchin (Will Grayson #2), Quinton Aaron (Tiny Cooper - okay, I know Tiny was Caucasian in the book, but I can’t help who I picture, right?), Rachel Hurd Wood (Jane), Daviegh Chase (Maura), Nick Roux (Gideon)


  1. Am with you on the John Hughes comparison - and it was definitely a 'punch the air' ending - one of my favourite YA endings ever, in fact!

  2. I love this book as well. It's got to be my favorite John Green book! I am hoping he'll touch a bit more on teen homosexuality in his future books though. I think many of his readers would appreciate the diversity.