Saturday, 14 September 2013

Review: Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan

Two Boys KissingTwo Boys Kissing

Author: David Levithan
Series: -
Pages: 208
Publisher: Text Publishing
Genre: Young Adult - LGBT

Synopsis. (Goodreads)

Seventeen-year-olds Craig and Harry are trying to set a new Guinness World Record for kissing.

Around them, Ryan and Avery are falling in love, Neil and Peter are falling out of love, and Cooper might be somewhere, but he is also, dangerously, nowhere.

Narrated, Greek-chorus style, by the generation of gay men lost to AIDS, this novel is a thematic companion to David Levithan’s groundbreakingBoy Meets Boy, which celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2013.

Two Boys Kissing is trademark Levithan: warm, sharp and real. It is also something new and completely extraordinary.

Review: 4 out of 5 stars

Two Boys Kissing is the first book I have read by David Levithan and it certainly won’t be my last as I found myself engrossed in his amazing story-telling and the poignant, inspiring tale being told.

I have to admit, this book is very different to what I normally read, it is based on a generation of gay men that have died from the Aids virus looking at a group of gay men in the present; comparing you could say what was to what now is.

It took me a little while to get used to the narration, I found it completely confusing at times but as the book progressed each voice became unique as the characters told their individual, distinctive stories. The plot and the pacing flowed well and I found myself becoming absorbed in each of the raw, emotional and heartfelt personal experiences.

With the chorus of gay men narrating and marvelling at the difference in acceptance now for the teens than what is was for them, it showed the social differences they faced which at times was terribly difficult to read about after knowing what they had to endure – loneliness, beatings, prejudice and being disowned by family and friends, it was an eye opener.

Craig, Harry, Ryan, Avery, Cooper, Neil and Peter are the characters we get to know throughout the story, each with different personalities but connected by their sexuality and their personal struggles. I enjoyed and admired each of the characters and the insight we are given into their lives.

Two Boys Kissing is a book filled with heart and hope, the subject matters are often taboo and not openly talked about so I commend David Levithan for writing such a exceptional and distinct book, it certainly sends an important message; it was informative and taught me a lot as we learn about the struggles and the need for acceptance constantly faced by teens primarily because of ignorance.

David Levithan’s writing is utterly brilliant, his story-telling exceeded my expectations and resonate with you as a reader and despite finding the narrative style complex initially it ended up being an important aspect in the overall story.

Overall, Two Boys Kissing is a beautiful, emotive book with stunning prose and wonderful characterization; a highly addictive, compelling read.

Thank-you kindly to Text Publishing for the opportunity to read and review Two Boys Kissing. 


David LevithanAbout the author: David Levithan (born 1972) is an American children's book editor and award-winning author. He published his first YA book, Boy Meets Boy, in 2003. Levithan is also the founding editor of PUSH, a Young Adult imprint of Scholastic Press.


  1. What a great review! I think I read Boy Meets Boy when it first came out but I honestly can't for sure say I did. In either case I'm going to give it and this one a try I need a good emotional read :)
    - Kimberly @ Turning the Pages

  2. This is such a great review, you made this so clear and informative and I really appreciate it. I have been so curious about this book.

  3. Wonderful review, Sharon. I loved this book and the young men touched me. While I wasn't confused, I can see how some of the back and forth might trip you up.

  4. Oh Sharon, I'm super happy you liked this one! This is one of several good reviews I've read. I've only held off because I was afraid the narration might be confusing, but seeing that you were able to get into it is a good thing. Yay! I'll definitely be reading this one.

    Molli | Once Upon a Prologue


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