Customer Reviews for

Two Boys Kissing

Average Rating 4.5
( 28 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(22)

4 Star

(2)

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(1)

2 Star

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1 Star

(3)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

10 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

 Normally I wouldn't pick something like this up. Although I am

 Normally I wouldn't pick something like this up. Although I am in no way against homosexuality, since I'm not into it, I just wouldn't read something that CENTERS on it. But then I started hearing things from my blogger friends saying that they loved this book and that...
 Normally I wouldn't pick something like this up. Although I am in no way against homosexuality, since I'm not into it, I just wouldn't read something that CENTERS on it. But then I started hearing things from my blogger friends saying that they loved this book and that the writing style was something that had never been done before and naturally, I got curious. And you guys, this  book changed me.
     Now this was my very first Levithan book and I am so glad I chose this one. From the very beginning I was sucked in to the poetic writing style. It really is narrated by a Greek Chorus. This unique writing had me hanging on every word. Just the writing alone had me so emotional I found myself teary eyed and clutching my heart through out the entire book.
     I never read reviews until I've written my own, so determine if I wanted to read this book I went and checked out everyone's updates and their ratings. In every update I saw "OMG the feels!" or "My heart breaks for them." This is what made me decide I wanted to read it. And man, after finishing this story I really felt emotionally drained. Every story (because its holds multiple POV's) broke me. I was smitten with everyone's story, but it was actually Cooper's who hit me the most.
     In this story we see what being gay did to different boys, in different times of their lives, and their loved ones. Some of those loved ones accepted them and others didn't. I loved that this book doesn't make it all seem like all sunshine and rainbows, because in reality it isn't. Sometimes the dark and gritty happens and teens that read this need to know how to handle it.
     Lastly, I loved the ending and Levithan's acknowledgements. The entire story centered around that one very important kiss and in the end the author was able to pull it altogether to that one central location. Not everyone was happy, but they were all there in some way, separate, but still together. I also loved the acknowledgements because in the synopsis it said "based on the true events story" and I was intrigued. I had planned to Google it after wards to see what the real story was, but I didn't have to. Levithan tells about the real story that inspired this one and I saw that as a thanks for them for being so brave. Again, I was moved to tears. (I really needed a "Use in case of feels tissue box!")
     In short, don't let the title or what this book is about deter you from reading it. It may not be what you normally would read, but I kid you not if you are a reader, certain aspects of it will amaze you. My first Levithan read was filled with emotions and incredible writing and I promise that this won't be my last book by him. I am already absolutely smitten with him.

posted by Take_Me_AwayPH on September 24, 2013

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

Really

Who really thinks this is a good book? I would hate to think even one teenager would think its ok to kiss another boy. Shame on this author for trying to lead young boys into a lifestyle that includes higher rates of depression and suicides

posted by 7367579 on January 4, 2014

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Page 1 of 2
  • Posted September 24, 2013

     Normally I wouldn't pick something like this up. Although I am

     Normally I wouldn't pick something like this up. Although I am in no way against homosexuality, since I'm not into it, I just wouldn't read something that CENTERS on it. But then I started hearing things from my blogger friends saying that they loved this book and that the writing style was something that had never been done before and naturally, I got curious. And you guys, this  book changed me.
         Now this was my very first Levithan book and I am so glad I chose this one. From the very beginning I was sucked in to the poetic writing style. It really is narrated by a Greek Chorus. This unique writing had me hanging on every word. Just the writing alone had me so emotional I found myself teary eyed and clutching my heart through out the entire book.
         I never read reviews until I've written my own, so determine if I wanted to read this book I went and checked out everyone's updates and their ratings. In every update I saw "OMG the feels!" or "My heart breaks for them." This is what made me decide I wanted to read it. And man, after finishing this story I really felt emotionally drained. Every story (because its holds multiple POV's) broke me. I was smitten with everyone's story, but it was actually Cooper's who hit me the most.
         In this story we see what being gay did to different boys, in different times of their lives, and their loved ones. Some of those loved ones accepted them and others didn't. I loved that this book doesn't make it all seem like all sunshine and rainbows, because in reality it isn't. Sometimes the dark and gritty happens and teens that read this need to know how to handle it.
         Lastly, I loved the ending and Levithan's acknowledgements. The entire story centered around that one very important kiss and in the end the author was able to pull it altogether to that one central location. Not everyone was happy, but they were all there in some way, separate, but still together. I also loved the acknowledgements because in the synopsis it said "based on the true events story" and I was intrigued. I had planned to Google it after wards to see what the real story was, but I didn't have to. Levithan tells about the real story that inspired this one and I saw that as a thanks for them for being so brave. Again, I was moved to tears. (I really needed a "Use in case of feels tissue box!")
         In short, don't let the title or what this book is about deter you from reading it. It may not be what you normally would read, but I kid you not if you are a reader, certain aspects of it will amaze you. My first Levithan read was filled with emotions and incredible writing and I promise that this won't be my last book by him. I am already absolutely smitten with him.

    10 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 10, 2013

    Cover

    I like the cover

    6 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2013

    I haven't read the book yet but I am looking forward to. I just

    I haven't read the book yet but I am looking forward to. I just wanted to mention here that the fist two weeks (until September 10, 2013) the books is out the author will be donating 2 dollars of the proceeds to The Trevor Project. -DG

    6 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2013

    Re: to cover

    How can you say that the cover is gross and then turn around and say you're okay with gay people?? That's a little hypocritical and honestly, I don't know why I just wasted time responding to such an ignorant post.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2014

    Amazing - a inspiring tale for our generation - LGBT or not

    People have been saying that this book is only good for the gay community. I strongly disagree! I am straight and this book still taught be so much about life! I feel as though levithan is the savor of our genereation. He commicates that love is real, no matter who its with. Its just love. Raw, heartbreaking, beautiful love.

    Thank you david.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 2, 2013

    Confession time.  I still have yet to read a David Levithan nove

    Confession time.  I still have yet to read a David Levithan novel.  Yes, I am hanging my head in shame.  What is wrong with me??? This was my first.  I don't know why I started with this one.  It was new and shiny.  I also will confess that I was a little nervous about the whole Greek chorus thing.  I mean come on… that is a little bit intimidating to go into a book knowing that is how the book is going to start. 




    Last confession.  I didn't just like this book, I LOVED it!!!! Seriously, this might be about a 6 on my 5.0 scale. Yep, it was that good.  




    I'm sure that this book will raise a few eyebrows and some people will look and just delete this review without even reading what it is about, and that is a shame, because truly, this book is about so much more than two boys kissing. There are so many stories weaved into the framework of Craig and Harry kissing.  We meet Peter and Neil who have been a couple for a while.  We meet Avery and Ryan who have just met and are dipping their toe into the world of dating.  And there is Cooper, who is alone.  Along the way we meet friends of the aforementioned people. We meet enemies. We hear the F word hurled at them. But through it all we see two boys kissing. 




    I followed all their stories.  Reading them and obsessing over them. Wondering what their parents, friends, neighbors were thinking. 




    And one of the most amazing parts of this novel is the writing itself.  I hadn't read more than about ten pages when I had to go and get my post-it notes.  Why? Because this was a library book, so I couldn't write in it or bend pages, and I HAD to start marking passages. When you start reading things like this:




    Not everything needs to be said at once. Sharing truth is not the kind of gift that comes in wrapping paper–ripped open once      and there, you’re done. No, this is a gift that must be unfolded. It is enough to start the telling. It’s enough to have the beginning and feel like it’s a beginning.




    Or this:




    We think of the boys we kissed, the boys we screwed, the boys we loved, the boys who didn’t love us back, the boys who were with us at the end, the boys who were with us beyond the end. Love is so painful, how could you ever wish it on anybody? And love is so essential, how could you ever stand in its way?




    Amazing, right? Seriously, this book just blew me away.  I read it slower than I normally do because I was so focused on what was written. I was so absorbed in the verse I couldn't pull myself out of it to fly through the book.  What a great problem to have! 




    I will also say that this book was an inspiration to gay teens everywhere. What an amazing story and what an incredible book.  I just couldn't get enough of this story.  Amazing. To say this is a must read is such an understatement that its not even funny.  Definitely on my best of 2013.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2014

    This book is 50 years too late. Levithan speaks of what was, wha

    This book is 50 years too late. Levithan speaks of what was, what is and what should be for young boys who become gay men. I could not
    read for very long without tears in my eyes. I was 13 years old when I knew. I was 70 years old when I finally said I am Gay. I lived at lot
    in those years to include being married 45 years. But not a day went by that I did not think of "it." It is my grand-childen who made me see
    it was OK to be gay. It was one special 17 year old high school senior who reminded me of me. The narrators of the book tell the story
    eloquently. Today people accept and understand. Giant steps have been taken. But there is still a lot that has to change. I was still afraid at
    70. Just a little easier. I strongly recommend this book. Good luck and happiness to all the boys. 

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2014

    Really

    Who really thinks this is a good book? I would hate to think even one teenager would think its ok to kiss another boy. Shame on this author for trying to lead young boys into a lifestyle that includes higher rates of depression and suicides

    1 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 2, 2013

    Loved it

    The storyline from the different perspectives of gay boys was really quite amazing and i grew to love every single chaacter, all of which were very well developed. One thing i think people should know before making haste judgement on this book based on the title is the book is not so much a story about two boys kissing as it is about the symbolism of each of the characters and the lives each of the teens that the chorus of gay men lost to aids compare their lives to and comment on how they made similar choices. It warmed my heart and really makes you take a moment to step back and appreciate the things and people in your life. My only criticism is that is was pricy considering that it was only 130ish pages but part of that goes to a good cause (the trevor project) so i suppose it sits fine with me. I would recommend it to everyone because even if you do not support homosexuality i think you can relate to bulling, discrimination, and other cricumstances these teens face, just on a depper level. Please read before judging, it truly is a great book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2014

    simply amazing

    simply amazing

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  • Posted April 27, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    ¿The first sentence of the truth is always the hardest. Each of

    “The first sentence of the truth is always the hardest. Each of us had a first sentence, and most of us found the strength to say it out loud to someone who deserved to hear it. What we hoped, and what we found, was that the second sentence of the truth is always easier than the first, and the third sentence is even easier than that. Suddenly you are speaking the truth in paragraphs, in pages. The fear, the nervousness, is still there, but it is joined by a new confidence. All along, you've used the first sentence as a lock. But now you find that it's the key.”

    Every now and then I read a book that I just know will stick with me forever. When I find one of these special books, I want every person I know – and even ones I don't – to read it. That was definitely the case with Two Boys Kissing. This book was truly something special and I can't recommend it highly enough.

    “If you let the world in, you open yourself up to the world. Even if the world doesn't know that you're there.”

    I read the audiobook version, which I was pleasantly surprised to find was narrated by the author himself. The book itself was powerful, but having the author read his own words made it that much more so. There's something about listening to an author reading their own words and realizing how much of themselves they put into the characters and the story, that made this one even more powerful and special then it would have been with a different narrator. You could hear his passion for the story in each word he spoke. And those words? They were beautiful and honest. The only drawback of reading this one in audiobook format is that there's no way to highlight the beautiful passages... and there were a lot of them. Had I read this in eBook format, I'd have highlighted half the book. I had to go seek out quotes on Goodreads.

    “...he hopes that maybe it'll make people a little less scared of two boys kissing than they were before, and a little more welcoming to the idea that all people are, in fact, born equal, no matter who they kiss or screw, no matter what dreams they have or love they give.”

    Two Boys Kissing is inspired by a true story. Many of them, actually. While it's true the book mostly centers around Harry and Craig's endeavor to break the Guinness World Record for the longest kiss, there are several other characters whose stories are every bit as important to this book. Harry and Craig's bold gesture has a huge impact on these other characters who are attempting to navigate tricky situations on their own.

    “Love is so painful, how could you ever wish it on anybody? And love is so essential, how could you ever stand in its way?”

    This book was gorgeous and thought-provoking. I know it will stick with me for a very, very long time. It moved me to tears, made me appreciate the struggle of my gay friends, and most of all, made me realize that while progress has undeniably been made, there's still so much more left to achieve. I've recently read that some parents are petitioning schools to remove this book from their libraries. Now, I'm not going to get on my soapbox on this, but all I can say is that I hope that while the parents aren't open-minded enough to give this book a shot, that the school officials will take a few hours and read this beautiful, powerful book and realize taking it out of libraries would do more harm than good, by far.

    “You can give words, but you can't take them. And when words are given, that is when they are shared. We remember what that was like. Words so real they were almost tangible. There are conversations you remember, for certain. But more than that, there is the sensation of conversation. You will remember that, even when the precise words begin to blur.”

    I wasn't sure how the Greek Chorus of gay men would work in this book. It took a little bit of time for me to fully embrace it, but it wasn't long before it became one of my favorite things about this book. Their voices were so honest and it was incredibly moving listening to their thoughts on the events taking place in current day, as compared to their struggles. I got entirely wrapped up in each individual character's story, though I don't think any moved me more than Cooper's. His voice – and the rest of the voices – were so authentic and believable. I've listened to friends talk about some of the same struggles and I think that's what made this book so personal to me.

    "We know that some of you are still scared. We know that some of you are still silent. Just because it's better now doesn't mean that it's always good.”

    There's not one thing I would change about this book, except to maybe make it longer. The world needs more books like this, more writers like David Levithan. This was an emotional and hopeful read. We've come a long way, but there's still so much further to come.

    “We do not start as dust. We do not end as dust. We make more than dust. That's all we ask of you. Make more than dust.”

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  • Posted March 17, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I was captivated from start to finish. I'm not sure any book I

    I was captivated from start to finish. I'm not sure any book I read in 2013 sucked me in so easily and kept me interested so thoroughly; Two Boys Kissing will definitely make my Top Five Reads in 2014. These statements all feel like hyperbole, a type of review I try very hard not to fall into but all three of them are true and honest in this case. I read the book in one sitting, fought back tears (some of sadness, some of rage, some of loss and some of happiness) throughout, and wished it hadn't ended so quickly.

    In two hundred pages, Levithan interweaves 8 complete stories and does justice to them all. All of the main characters are believable, authentic young men. Harry, Craig, Peter, Neil, Avery, Ryan, Tariq and Cooper are not the idealized Icons of gay teenagers we'd like to think exist but rather are the reality: each has his own personal hurdles to leap on the way to adulthood. The adults in the background likewise have their own struggles to address: some are accepting of their sons' homosexuality, some tacitly acknowledge it but would rather not discuss it, and some don't approve at all. Those who are not parents are also well-represented, some helpful and some not-so. We don't live in a perfect world where all parents love their children no matter what, and Levithan doesn't pretend we do. But he chooses, and most of his characters choose, to focus on hope rather than fear, and that's part of what makes this book so beautiful to read. Even at the darkest moments (and there are a few), there is always hope.

    The use of a Greek Chorus in the form of gay men who have died from AIDS is a bold touch for a YA book aimed at kids who may not even remember there was an AIDS Crisis in the gay community, and all kudos to Levithan for not only attempting it but succeeding. The Chorus gives us an omniscient narrator, which enables the author to move freely among the focal characters, but it also gives that omniscience a personality and voice that is not a distraction from the main action of the book.

    Also kudos to Levithan for not just focusing on CIS-gendered white gay boys. The inclusion of Tariq (whose recent victimization by gay-bashers inspires Harry and Craig to set this kissing record) and Avery (a transgendered boy) help the book to find its real emotional center. I can't imagine this story being told without them.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2014

    Push past the narration :)

    The 'Greek Chorus' point-of-view is strange really, and just a little hard to get used to. There are a lot of 'we's in it. The story's great though! And the POV is fitting. As for the writing itself, it's extremely poetic. More so than then the other books by this author I've read, it isn't what I would have done but it makes for an extremely emotional tone which helps to carry the main purpose and argument of the story.

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  • Posted February 28, 2014

    This book is narrated by gay gays who have died from HIV and the

    This book is narrated by gay gays who have died from HIV and they tell three different stories. When I first started reading, I was struggling to stay with it because it didn't seem like my kind of book. Little did I know that just a mere 2 hours later I would be crying and thinking that was a great book! I think this book should be a must read. Even if the beginning is a little slow for you, keep going! I did and I don't regret it!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2014

    Cover

    I think the cover is very likeable for gays and im gay too the LGBT communty is like anyone else

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 30, 2014

    To this book is 50 years tooo late

    I couldnt agree more

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2014

    Vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvveeeeeeeeeeeerrrrrrrrrrryyyyyyyy weird.

    Very weird. Raise your hand if you agree. (Raise my hand) thank YOU!!!!!!!!

    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2014

    Perfectly perfect.

    This author sincerly knows how to write a book. Levithan gives me hope and really inspired me. This is not a book. Its a work of art. I support every word Levithan writes. Because of this book, i will read every other book he has written. There needs to be more authors like Levithan writing more books like Boy Meets Boy in this world. And goddammit, he makes me think my wish might just come true

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2013

    <3

    Absolutely loved it!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 11, 2013

    Yes

    A wonderful, witty, sad, silly and entertaining look at love and life from every perspective.

    This is a book everyone should read. Teens, adults, gay, straight, it is enlightening and educating.

    Open your eyes, read this book and view a new, changing world.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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