Two Boys Kissing — Review

August 16, 2013

“At four in the morning, you can be so lightheaded that even the stars seem to have a sound. Harry and Craig sway to the sound of these stars— the few that glimmer over their heads— but also to the sound of all the unseen stars, all the nebulae that are out of reach but still present. At four in the morning, you can imagine the whole universe is looking down on you.” ~page 119

This quote is from the middle of David Levithan’s new book Two Boys Kissing, which comes out later this month. It gives nothing away, and yet it gives everything away.

Interweaving tales of LGBTQ boys navigating life, love, expression, and so much more with the benevolent observations of the generation of gay men lost to AIDS, Two Boys Kissing is simultaneously heartbreaking and uplifting.

Levithan’s writing bridges the gap that too often inhibits communication and understanding between different LGBTQ generations. The “lost generation” sees their pain and fears replayed in the lives of these young kids, but they also see and rejoice in the triumphs and the gains that they’ve made. Two Boys Kissing gives an important glimpse into the past, but it is very much an image of the present, with clearly defined hopes for the future. It makes me think of the “It Gets Better” campaign, but on a more universal, less chronological level (if that makes sense) — the universe is looking down on you, and it is with you.

Technically, this might be YA, but I think everyone should read this book. I don’t care who you are or where you come from, this book has something to teach you about the human spirit.

(Note: I received a free [signed!] review copy of this book at Book Expo America 2013. The quote above is taken from an advanced copy and may differ from the text in the final version.)

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