So I’m trying out a new style of reviewing books! This is going to be a rather long post, but hopefully, with 100 bullet points, it’s at least fairly easy to skim. I got the idea from Karina @ Afire Pages!
Before I start I want to note that I have a few paragraphs at the very bottom explaining my thoughts on the book a lot more coherently, so if you want to just skip there and see what I have to say, then feel free! Also, if it looks like a number is blank, that means the thought is a spoiler. Just highlight the text and you should be able to read it with no problem!
Content Warnings: Ableist language (psycho,); misgendering
1. Sneaking a gay boy away from his gross family? Alright, I’m about it.
2. Saturday nights are definitely meant to be spent at the bookstore
3. “His hair points in ten different directions.” Me too.
4. I’m loving the full cast narration.
5. “I feel myself blush and bloom.” I know this was written way before Troye’s song, but still lol
6. “…at least let me wear a walkman.” Omg, how old is this story?
7. What is even going on with this third-grade class president campaign??
8. Okay, so we’re listening to Paul’s gay memoir, got it
9. A Gay-Straight Alliance at an elementary school? Where does this take place? I wanna live in a town that gay.
10. I have no words about Infinite Darleen except, “Oh. My. Gosh.”
11. The synesthesia problem with full cast audios is when I can’t tell the difference between two narrators’ voices because they’re almost the same color.
12. They’re talking and hitting it off and oh my gosh
13. Okay, the imaginary friend theory is amazing.
14. Nooooo, he didn’t make it to Noah’s locker in time!!
15. The piano music between chapters is… interesting
16. “Who am I to approve or disapprove? If she’s happy, good for her.” That’s the attitude that more people need to have about other people’s business. Good on Tony.
17. Alright, so Tony’s romance problems sound familiar and I’m feeling really attacked.
18. THEY MENTIONED THE STRAND!
19. I am Tony, confirmed.
20. Well, damn Joanie, alright.
21. This is such a shaky conversation, and I’m scared. Paul and Joanie are just going from one risky topic to another.
22. Noah paints music? Does he have synesthesia too? That’s such a coincidence if so, because I didn’t know that when I mentioned mine in Thought #11.
23. Oh my gosh, Infinite Darleen just ruined the moment!
24. “It’s only after you’ve met her that you notice that somehow, she’s managed to encompass all her friends within her own self-image, so that when she’s acting full of herself, she’s actually full of her close friends, too.” I think I love Infinite Darleen.
25. “I’m about as smooth as a camel’s back.” Jeezus, do I relate to Paul so much.
26. They’re going to paint music together omgomgomg it’s a date.
27. Listen, Noah and Claudia’s first on page exchange is literally me and my little brother and I hate it.
28. Noah’s bedroom sounds like how I want to decorate my house one day.
If the economy gets good enough for me to own property…
29. Lol, they go into the closet.
30. I think I’m in love with Noah.
31. I love that they put the song in the background as he’s narrating.
32. Them painting the music was such a
gay sweet scene.
33. “The promise of a kiss will carry us forward.” What a romantic, damn.
34. Joanie, Paul, and Chuck out to lunch? Here comes a disaster.
35. “The underclassmen only have two options for lunch within walking distance.” Damn, at least y’all get the option to leave school for lunch. I never did in high school. We only have 30 minutes.
36. “Conversation is not his strong suit. In fact, I don’t think it’s a suit he even owns.” DAMN, GOT ‘EM
37. Why would you say “no offense” after saying you don’t like fruit? How is that offensive? What?
38. Oh my gosh, Chuck’s father has a giant liquor collection because he likes the bottles but doesn’t drink. I think I’ve just realized my destiny.
39. I’ve already lost track of the points that Paul’s taking.
40. I hate Chuck.
41. I’m losing faith in Joanie
42. Oh no, Paul and Joanie are growing apart : (
43. NOAH BROUGHT HIM FLOWERS I AM SOBBING !!
45. I’m dying of secondhand embarrassment from Paul’s parents.
46. His parents broke out the baby photos I’m dying
47. Paul’s brother is gross.
48. He unlocked Noah’s tragic backstory.
49. Oh no, Noah’s parents are better.
50. Oh no oh no, not Kyle, not the ex.
51. Alright, so Kyle hasn’t screwed up their relationship
yet, thank goodness.
52. “It was groovy.” “I Want juicy details.” This was published in 2005 what the heckie?
53. “He looks sleepless and dressed to depress.” This is my new tagline.
54. I have a bad feeling Paul’s gonna get caught with Kyle. Why is he doing this? Paul’s playing a dangerous game.
55. Yo, is Kyle okay? He doesn’t sound okay. Nor is he making any sense at all.
56. Alright, so we have a bi crisis… mood.
57. Masculinity is so fragile.
58. I think Tony has a point in this Kyle thing…
59. Oh no, Tony, oh no
60. Lissa is really sassy, damn.
61. KYLE WHAT THE HELL?! What does he mean he thinks they should be together? He’s delirious.
62. Yeah, because going into a relationship that you screwed up before right after a major death in the family is a great idea.
63. PAUL WHY WOULD YOU KISS HIM WHEN YOU HAVE NOAH I HATE THIS SO MUCH WHAT THE HELL?
64. Honestly, Chuck can choke.
65. At first, I was thinking what Noah tells him wasn’t good, but now it really makes sense.
66. Tuesday and three-quarters.
67. Joanie is really freaking out gosh darn it.
68. And so is Paul…
69. The chapter is called “Boy Loses Boy” oh no oh nohonohhonhon hon ho no
70. Oh my gosh, this is worse.
71. It was only a kiss. How did it end up like this? It was only a kiss. It was only a kiss.
72. “It’s amazing to believe that I kissed Kyle and was dumped by Noah all within the span of one pair of jeans.” Man, what a quote.
73. I love rivalry between valedictorian-hopefuls.
74. Oh my gosh friend of Dorothy references
75. Fight, fight, fight, fight!
76. Okay, but I know Paul’s gay and everyone knows it, but I still think the girls would be kind of uncomfy with him in the locker room. I’d be uncomfy if some random person that’s not supposed to be there was there.
77. Yo, Joanie has a real point about the “more than friends” phrase.
78. Why is Infinite Darleen like this?
79. “They have been together for more than twenty years… I want to ask them how they do it… ‘How do you stay together?’ I want to ask them.” That’s the biggest damn mood I ever did see.
80. Ted is a whole Mess™
81. Infinite Darleen is such an instigator omg
82. Oh. My. Gosh, Paul! Drop Kyle and run to Noah already! I’m so sick of this!!
83. Alright, here we go. Paul’s making it messy, but at least he’s dropping Kyle, thank goodness.
84. Oh heck, Tony’s talking a lot of sense into Paul… or at least trying.
85. I relate so hard to trying to save friends from bad situations. And to situations so similar to Tony’s.
86. TONY STOOD UP TO HIS MOTHER YES!!
87. That alphabetic explanation about what he’s going to do about Noah was a wild ride from start to finish.
88. Paul is a such a romantic and Noah hasn’t started talking to him again yet but oh my gosh I’m so excited for them.
89. I’m so glad Paul and Kyle are figuring it out and starting to be okay again, and that Kyle and Tony are friends. This is such a good ending for them.
90. Here it comes, here it comes. Please, be good.
91. HE HAS A SURPRISE FOR PAUL OMG OMG OMG
92. I AM SOBBING !!
93. NOAH ASKED HIM TO THE DANCE
94. Gosh darn it, Joanie, just go to the dance without your gross boyfriend.
95. Claudia has an attitude too and she needs to drop it.
96. Lol take a picture, it’ll last longer.
97. THE LESBIANS DRESSED AS HEPBURN AND HEPBURN I LOVE IT
98. J O N I S H O W E D U P !
99. Tony’s mother said he can go to the dance; I wanna cry happy tears.
100. Beautiful, just beautiful.
More Coherent Thoughts
Okay so depending on how you read my above thoughts, you think I’d give this book 5, maybe even 4 stars. However, I’m giving it a 3-star rating. It’s a high 3 stars, though! If I did half star ratings, it’d be 3.5. While Boy Meets Boy was a beautiful story and a great introduction into Levithan’s books, I didn’t connect with it as much as I’d hoped to. I love Paul and Noah and Joanie and Tony and absolutely everyone
except Chuck, but there was just something missing from the story itself, I suppose. Maybe it was that my high school experience was a lot different. Maybe it’s that I’ve never been in a relationship like that or been through some of the romantic troubles Paul goes through, but something didn’t click.
I did appreciate the portrayals of different queer people’s backgrounds. Even though Paul comes from a place with a lot of privilege having accepting parents and going to an open-minded school (especially for the time), Tony lives with parents he almost has to hide from and Kyle is super confused about who he is for most of the book. Not to mention we have Infinite Darleen whom words cannot describe. It’s a pretty diverse book in that sense.
Also, the whole storyline with Joanie was spot on. Losing a friend after they enter a new romantic relationship is horrible. You don’t expect them to change completely but to have a new person added in their life. Growing apart is one of the worst ways to break up platonically and this part of the story really hurt me. Although I’m happy about the ending because all of Paul’s relationships are starting to look up.
Overall, I do recommend the book. It’s just that I was expecting to connect with it a little more and I’m kind of disappointed about that. Still, I’m really glad that I picked it up and even happier that I listened to the audiobook because it was really great!