Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan
Alfred A. Knopf, 2010
Dash and Lily are both New Yorkers, but in the city that never sleeps with a couple million residents, that hardly makes them neighbors. Yet each of them find themselves abandoned by their families at Christmas time and both are book lovers who frequent The Strand bookstore. It's there that Dash comes across a seemingly innocent red notebook with a few dares Lily has written inside. And so sets off a chain of events and hijinks across New York City for two teenagers during winter break.
I had no idea what to expect with this novel. All I knew was that I loved the film adaptation of one of this pair's previous novels, Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist, a few years ago; the premise sounded cute; and I've enjoyed the previous Levithan books I've read.
Also, we have five copies in my school's library and they are always checked out. And THAT is saying something.
So when a copy was finally checked in, I snagged it up and really enjoyed this holiday treat. I particularly love reading stories about nerdy teens, which I use as a compliment for both of these protagonists. They're smart, generally good kids who don't always make the greatest choices but are just getting used to figuring out this whole growing up thing and how life works. It was charming, and sure, at times I was cringing but only because while not everything going on was exactly realistic, the feelings that accompanied more than a few of these events were spot on.
All in all, I probably couldn't have picked a more perfect book serendipitously this time of year. A contemporary, urban, slightly dorky adventure was sweet and smart and is great for boys and girls and readers of all ages.
So Happy Holidays, comments welcome, and happy reading!
Rachel Cohn's Website
David Levithan's Website