May 7, 2013

Latest Read: Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

Here are the basics ...
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Publication date: Feb. 21, 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Category: Young Adult - Contemporary
Source: Borrowed from the library

Summary: Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be. (Adapted goodreads.com
My thoughts…
The good: There's this passage right at the beginning of the book and it ends with this line: "What is that thing in the pit of your stomach called desire?" At the time, I took the word desire in the most obvious sense. But in retrospect, when applied to Aristotle and Dante, that word encompasses so much more than just the desire to be with someone else. It's the desire to love themselves, to be accepted by their family for who they are, to communicate with people in a way that's real and honest and to understand how the world works. This is what Aristotle and Dante have in common and what ultimately brings them together.

Aristotle is a closed-off kid who isn't good at showing how he feels and spends much of his time pondering the why of it all. Dante is his opposite. He's much more open and positive and comfortable with who he is. There's this lightness to Dante that makes him irresistible. I think that's what endeared Aristotle more to me though. He didn't wear his heart on his sleeve. He cared just as much as the next person, but he didn't know how to show it. And who doesn't struggle with that? Every time there was another little crack in his Aristotle's armor, I could see the beauty of his character more and more. I saw exactly what Dante saw in him.

This book is just beautiful from start to finish. The writing, the characters, everything. It will make you think about life and put a lump in your throat and completely move you.

(No) reservations: None!

Do I recommend?: I highly recommend this. It surprised me in a lot of ways and there's so much more I could say but seriously, just read it. You won't regret it.

Happy reading!

5 comments:

  1. This sounds SO GOOD! I also love the cover; the writing is so pretty! Will definitely have to check it out!

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  2. This book sounds like it will be SO GOOD. I can't wait to read it, particularly to meet Dante and Aristotle, who sound absolutely delightful!

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  3. I loved, loved, loved, this book. So glad to see that others are loving it too.

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  4. oh man, I'm so thrilled you loved this! I think it would really hurt my heart to see a negative review of this book. It was so incredible, and I love what you said about Aristotle. It was easy to fall in love with Dante almost from the start - but with Aristotle, it was a slow burn that happened over the course of the book and was more meaningful because of it.

    Sigh. I just read this book a couple of months ago and already want to read it again.

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  5. Ooooh, this book sounds so good! I've heard so many great responses to this book so I'm thinking I should get around to this fast! I love surprises in books! And just as a side note, the cover is so pretty!

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