Book of the Month | March 2015
"Dante can swim. Ari can't. Dante is articulate and self-assured. Ari has a hard time with words and suffers from self-doubt. Dante gets lost in poetry and art. Ari gets lost in thoughts of his older brother who is in prison. Dante is fair skinned. Ari's features are much darker. It seems that a boy like Dante, with his open and unique perspective on life, would be the last person to break down the walls that Ari has built around himself.
But against all odds, when Ari and Dante meet, they develop a special bond that will teach them the most important truths of their lives, and help define the people they want to be. But there are big hurdles in their way, and only by believing in each other―and the power of their friendship―can Ari and Dante emerge stronger on the other side."
You know I do love a good coming of age novel and my goodness, this is such a good one. Single sentences could make my eyes instantly fill with tears, both happy and sad, and make my chin do that funny little wobble that only happens when there are too many feelings to process at once to truly know whether to smile, or laugh, or sob. And it didn't even matter that maybe some of the speech felt a little off once or twice because its message is so important and so clear without being so ridiculously overt that it loses its integrity. It's about love in all its forms, and friendship, and family, and how difficult it can be to figure out and feel comfortable with who you are and who you want to be. A smart young adult book that remains true to itself, with a good heart and characters that feel real; and it deserves every one of the five stars for being beautiful in its own, very honest way, just the way it is.
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Do you like coming of age novels?