TITLE: Will Grayson, Will Grayson
AUTHOR: John Green & David Levithan
GENRE: Young Adult, Romance, LGBT, Contemporary
RATING: 2/5 Stars
One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, teenager Will Grayson crosses paths with...Will Grayson! Two teens with the same name who run in two very different circles suddenly find their lives going in new and unexpected directions. Culminating in epic turns-of-heart on both of their parts, they team up to produce the most fabulous musical ever to grace the high-school stage.
What I Liked:
- I guess the one thing I did like about this plot was the fact that it was coherent, despite their being two authors. When more than one person is writing a book, sometimes the plot-line can drift off in a strange direction. Green and Levithan managed to keep the plot going on a focused path that made sense, while giving each character their own story. There were some nice plot moments and good twists too.
- The writing itself was pretty good too. I have already read two of John Green's books and like his writing style. It was evident which were his chapters in the story and I liked them for the most part. Levithan's writing was okay too, though significantly darker and quite a bit more serious. It was a nice mix to see such different writing styles.
What I Disliked:
- The main thing that disappointed me about this book were the characters. I liked John Green's Will Grayson and found him the most relateable, but the rest of them just fell flat for me. Levithan's Will Grayson came across as way too dark and dreary, constantly thinking philosophically about everything and I couldn't get on with him at all. None of the side characters really appealed to me either: Tiny Cooper was extremely egotistical, selfish and annoying, Jane not overly likeable, Maura's actions were totally unforgivable and in my opinion, the rest were not particularly memorable. My lack of empathy and compassion for the characters meant that I didn't really care about what happened to them.
- The ending was ridiculously cheesy! It felt so High School Musical/Glee like and although that translates well (most of the time) into visual media, it didn't quite work on the pages of this book. I couldn't understand at what point in the book the whole thing became about making Tiny Cooper feel appreciated either. It just felt a bit cringey to read, and meant the book had no real conclusion either.
Two critically acclaimed authors such as Levithan and Green should be able to produce a really good book. Or so I thought. Yes, I liked the writing styles a lot. I liked the fact that the chapters alternated between Will's and the individual stories really meshed together well. The plot was well focused too. Unfortunately the characters really annoyed me in the end and I just couldn't empathise with them at all. The ending irritated me too because it felt just a little too cheesy and dramatic and totally shifted the focus of the plot right at the last minute. I'm afraid I didn't enjoy this book a lot, I just thought it was okay. Sorry!