“The summer sun was not meant for boys like me. Boys like me belonged to the rain.”Aristotle
“Someday, I’m going to discover all the secrets of the universe.”Dante
That made me smile. “What are you going to do with all those secrets, Dante?”
“I’ll know what to do with them,” he said. “Maybe change the world.”
Before we get into the actual book review can I just say that the beauty of these 4 lines just punched me right in the face. The entire book just hit me right in the face (and the feels).
But I didn’t pick these two quotes simply because of their poetic prowess. No, I chose them as they are the embodiment of their speakers. Aristotle is an angry teen with a tough exterior, disappointed with the world, disappointed with his world. Dante is innocent, light and sensitive with an extraordinarily unique and untainted view of the world. But both their worlds collide and change when they meet each other. Both of them change when they meet each other. Initially it seems that the only thing they have in common is their shared hatred for their names but as they begin to spend more time together, they bond and ultimately form one of the purest friendships out there. The story spans over a couple of years and over that time we see Aristotle and Dante grow as individuals as they face their problems and discover the bounds of their friendship. We see them face challenges in the most human way possible, love and learn both about themselves and others.
Things I love about this book:
The characters!! I would love to say that they are three dimensional but that would be an understatement. Benjamin has somehow crafted them to be more real than you and I. You will love every second of their unique and human personalities.
The writing!! The book is narrated from Aristotle’s point of view and is laden with lines like “The problem with my life was that it was someone else’s idea”. The sentences are short and hold an insurmountable amount of depth in them. The writing is lyrical.
This book doesn’t have a distinctive plot line. Instead, it the story of two boys, with ups and downs scattered throughout the book, much like our lives.
The secondary characters aren’t written simply as a background element with their entire personalities based on a single trait. Its quite the contrary in fact, as you will discover as you read the book.
And lastly the energy. It’s thought provoking but still has a very relaxing, mellow summer vibe.
This book deserves all the awards it has gotten and more. Aristotle and Dante will make you laugh and cry. It will make you feel.