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One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, two teens—both named Will Grayson—are about to cross paths. As their worlds collide and intertwine, the Will Graysons find their lives going in new and unexpected directions, building toward romantic turns-of-heart and the epic production of history’s most fabulous high school musical.

Hilarious, poignant, and deeply insightful, John Green and David Levithan’s collaborative novel is brimming with a double helping of the heart and humor that have won them both legions of faithful fans.

 

Published: Penguin Group on Apr 6, 2010
ISBN: 9781101222997
List price: $9.99
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This books is composed of pure joy. It's not entirely happy, and bad things happen, it hasn't got romantic happy ending for every character introduced, but it is bursting at the seams with joy. As is Tiny Cooper, my pick for hero of the tale, regardless of the eponymous Will Graysons.read more
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Can I just state that I love Tiny Cooper? He is, by far, the best character in this entire story! The authors did an amazing job of describing his sense of fashion, his unbelievable size, and his love of...well, everything. You WANT to have him as a friend, want to be a part of the fabulousness that is Tiny, and honestly, just want to be loved by him.As for the Will Graysons, I loved them to a certain extent as well. The first one is Tiny's best friend, and spends most of the book trying to let go of an exterior that is protecting him from feeling anything. He is insecure, but better to hold off from life than actually put himself out there in any way. The other Will Grayson is more intriguing to me - very dark, depressed, and vulnerable in his own right. He is coming to grips with who he is and once he realizes it, he's actually gaining some confidence in his life. I kept wanting to know more about him.I loved MOST of the storyline, except the ending. It just sounded a little too much like a mushy episode of GLEE. I either felt like it needed more or less, but ended up feeling a little bit disappointed. What I did love was the theme of the overall book. It was all about friendship, love, and forgiveness and serves as a message to all of us to truly let those in our lives know how much we care about them.read more
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Will Grayson, Will Grayson is the newest book by young adult author John Green, and it’s co-written with David Levithan. The book is about two characters, both named Will Grayson, who meet up for the first time randomly one night. It follows both of their lives – when they are apart, and when their lives intersect. This is about all the book jacket tells you about the story, and that description really leaves a lot out. For instance, you would have no idea that one of the main themes of the book is homosexuality, and it also deals with depression.We are first introduced to Will Grayson #1, a teenager who gets by in life by abiding by the rules of “shutting up and not caring.” His best friend Tiny Cooper is literally huge and fabulously gay, and is in many ways the opposite of Will. Will Grayson #2, however, is moody, depressed, and secretly gay. All of their lives change one night when Will Grayson #1 and Tiny go into Chicago to see a concert and Will Grayson #2 goes into Chicago to meet his online lover Isaac. Once all of their lives intersect, things are never the same for any of them.In general Will Grayson, Will Grayson is a really good, intriguing book, and its biggest strength is that the authors seem to truly understand the adolescent mind. From the description you could think of a lot of stereotypical characters: the extremely gay, always in the spotlight friend, the depressed and moody Will Grayson. But there is so much more to them than just these simple definitions. The characters have real depth to them and the situations are realistic. It’s the type of book that you can’t stop reading because you want to know what happens next. And ultimately it has a good message to carry with you in life.One of the only problems with the novel may be that because the characters are so real and so faulty, it’s hard to like any of them. Will Grayson #1 is infuriating because he refuses to care about things or people in his life for most of the novel. Will Grayson #2 is downright mean sometimes, and Tiny Cooper is annoyingly self-centered; the type of guy that goes through dozens of boyfriends and is convinced he is completely heartbroken every time. The only truly likable character is Jane, and while she certainly has her faults as well you like her anyway. The others… maybe by the end you like them, but it’s certainly hard to get started.Another huge plus to this book is the format that it is written in. Every chapter alternates between Will Graysons as the narrator. Odd chapters are Will Grayson #1, even chapters are Will Grayson #2. This could certainly be confusing, but the characters are so different that you can usually tell right away who’s talking, even if you don’t look at the chapter. This is partly due to the fact that John Green wrote all of the odd chapters and David Levithan wrote the even chapters, and their writing styles are slightly different. Also, Will Grayson #2 writes in all lowercase, and instead of using quotation marks for speech he writes the character’s name and a colon, like in a script.The only other small negative that I have is the ending of the book. The whole time it’s building up to this big surprise ending, and the ending certainly is a surprise, but it’s slightly confusing. You’re left wondering, “What exactly just happened?” And that’s not exactly the most satisfying way to end a book. They traded explanation for suspense, and I could’ve used just a little more explanation for the ending. Maybe someone can explain it to me, but I was a little confused, though it was still touching.read more
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Took me longer to warm up to Levithan’s Will Grayson, but I think that may have been intentional. By half way through, I was in love with almost every character. Tiny Cooper is a delight. Ending didn’t quite work for me, but it’s a small quibble with this amazing book.read more
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Having heard entirely varying accounts of this collaborative novel, I approached it with both hope and trepidation. I worried that the format of the even numbered chapters (without capitalization, ala texting or instant messaging) would irritate me to the point that I could not get through the book. Thankfully, both Will Graysons, from whose perspectives the reader sees, are intelligent and use decent grammar. The lack of capitalization becomes easy enough to ignore, especially for people of the instant communication generation. Format aside, this book was absolutely fabulous, much like Tiny Cooper. The characters are flawed and can actually be imagined to be real high school students. The story and writing has a bit of magic; perhaps it is simply the magic of truth or acceptance, but it is a magic. Heterosexual and homosexual love are both celebrated in this fabulous teen novel that has been a long time in coming. I highly recommend this!read more
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I'm not sure why I held off reading Will Grayson, Will Grayson for as long as I did. Something about me rebelled against the story - maybe it was the fact it was written by two authors or maybe the summary didn't jive for me... but after reading titles by both authors (And LOVING them) I decided to take the plunge.Willx2 did not disappoint, people. This book has been reviewed, and then reviewed and chatted about some more, so let me talk to those of you who are on the fence, or just a bit disinterested, as I was.This isn't a mind-blowing story. I didn't get goosebumps at the end, or fall into fits of swooning love like so many reviews I've seen. It didn't change the world for me, or make me throw my arms up and sing hallelujah in my best Tiny voice. All that said, this book entertained me, made me smile, and made me thoroughly appreciate the differences (and similarities) of two of my favorite authors.The story will keep you moving. I began this book as activities for school started and I found myself longing to find a quiet spot and start reading again. It's a quiet sort of addiction, this story. It left behind little tugs that could only be satisfied by reading just one more chapter - just one. But those chapters added up and I ended up finishing off the entire book in an evening, then guiltily looking at it like it was the remains of an entire chocolate cake I'd eaten in one swoop and would be wishing I could enjoy the next day.So Will Grayson, Will Grayson, you are my delicious chocolate cake. You weren't the best chocolate cake I've ever had so I'll run out into the street and sing your praises, but you were pretty darn satisfying and I wish I had more of you to read today.read more
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Two teenage boys, both named Will Grayson, meet randomly one night at an unlikely venue in Chicago. After that night, their lives become intertwined, culminating with an unlikely relationship and an over the top musical number!The story alternates point of views between the boys – with one Will Grayson being written by John Green, the other by David Levithan.The first Will Grayson is the epitome of a John Green character – smart talking, socially awkward, and incredibly relatable. Will’s best friend is Tiny, a larger than life, flamboyant gay football player with a passion for musical theatre. This Will is busy sorting out his feelings for a hip girl, Jane, while trying to fit in with his classmates and keep Tiny grounded in reality.The second will grayson, who never uses capital letters, is a closeted gay teenage boy, struggling with depression and who lives in an apartment with his mother. will is enamoured with isaac, a boy he meets in an online chat room. will and isaac plan to finally meet up one night in Chicago.This novel is exactly what I have come to expect from a John Green novel – witty prose, relatable characters, with a compelling plot. I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, and hope for another collaboration between the authors. I would love to see spinoff following the life of secondary character, Tiny!Will Grayson, Will Grayson is a 2013 Senior YRCA nominee. It has also been named YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults and received the Stonewall Children’s and Young Adult Literature Award.read more
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The best sort of Young Adult fiction - you wish it was real so you could be friends with them. A lot of really wise moments in this book. I loved the relationship that Will Grayson 1 had with his parents. The conversation with his father about the difference between having a child and having a yacht was super touching.read more
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Green and Leviathan have collaborated on a story about two very different Will Graysons who both happen to live in the Chicago area and happen to meet in a very unusual place. Each author writes one particular Will Grayson, and their styles are very different. Having not read enough David Leviathan, I can’t remember if it’s his style to write with no punctuation and very sparse text, but that’s how his Will Grayson is written. Leviathan’s Will Grayson is gay and depressed and full of anger at life. John Green’s Will Grayson is not participating in his life, either, but at least his life is fully realized. Green has a way of creating memorable characters who are full of life and creativity, and he has written some of his best characters here. Sometimes when characters cross over into Leviathan’s narrative they become larger than life and more cardboard than real, which may be part of his writing style. I think this is an interesting collaboration, and the final musical scene is really genius and entertaining – at the end, this book celebrates life and love no matter what.read more
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Green, J. , & Levithan D. (2010). Will Grayson, Will Grayson. New York: Dutton.9780525421580310 pagesAppetizer: Set in Chicago, this novel goes back-and-forth, sharing the story of two teenage boys named Will Grayson. In the odd-numbered chapters, John Green writes the story of the first Will Grayson, who lives life by two simple rules: 1) Don't care to much and 2) Shut up. But his friend Tiny Cooper (who is HUGE, gay and plays football and is writing a play about Will and him) makes it difficult for Will One to stick to his rules and he soon finds himself forced to help with Tiny's musical production of his life story, while resisting a girl named Jane who he both likes and doesn't like.David Levithan's Will Grayson--of the even chapters--is struggling with his depression. The one bright spot in his life is his love for a boy named Isaac who lives in Ohio. But Will won't admit that he's in love with Isaac to anyone. He won't even tell his only friend Maura that Isaac exists. As Will and Isaac plan to meet for the first time, Will prepares to go to Chicago, a trip that will send him to run into the other Will Grayson. Both will find that their lives are changed by their meeting and following interactions.As far as co-written experiments go, I really loved this one. The two Wills' have very distinct voices and Levithan's Will only narrates in lower case and presents dialogue in script format. Green's Will is also often referred to as Grayson instead of by his first name, which helps to keep the already very-distinct voices separate and clear with just a glance at the page.I absolutely loved Green's writing. It was him at his best--super quirky and humorous. He still hasn't really wandered away from his tendency to write from the perspective of a tall, skinny, upper-class white guy with a best friend who is somehow marked or marginalized. But, while a limited perspective, he writes what he writes WELL. I found that I enjoyed his Will Grayson much more than I kinda-sorta liked the first half of Quentin in PaperTowns. Although, I still have to admit, I found that my passion did fade in the last third of the book. Maybe there was a little less humor, maybe Green's Will Grayson was kind of squared away and the story began to belong to Tiny and Levithan's Will. But there were fewer chuckles on my part. I was surprised by Levithan's writing. The only books I'd previously read by him was Boy Meets Boy (which is wonderful, humorous LUV! and sticks to the fluffier-side of life as a homosexual teen) and Wide Awake (which I felt 'eeh' about). So, it was very surprising to start chapter two and read the dark voice of his Will Grayson. Startling, in fact. But as I kept reading, I started to like that Will Grayson more, as he became more rounded than just the consuming depression and anger that initially surprised me.The character, Tiny Cooper has a central role in both Will Graysons' lives, helping to make this book extend beyond being about romantic love, to being about all love, (but particularly friendship love!). But, after finishing the book, I still felt I didn't completely know Tiny. Yeah, I thought both authors did a fair job of presenting his character consistently, but I still felt I only understood Tiny at the surface level. Part of my problem could be how outgoing and energetic Tiny was as a character. I'm more of the withdrawn, silent type, and I still have trouble understanding what makes talkative people tick when they're real and I can actually ask them "hey, what makes you tick?" I have yet to get an answer that is sensical or that doesn't make me feel exhausted just listening.I'm glad this book came out when it did, because next week I plan to do a lesson on stories that are co-constructed. While I'd planned to focus in part on Chester (in which a character battles his author for power over the story) and on the awesomeness that is mad libs (oh girl scout camp in fourth and fifth grade, you will always being associated with these and my childhood deep-rooted fear of forgetting what an adverb is), this will add a nice YA touch to the talk.Dinner Conversation:"When I was little, my dad used to tell me, "Will, you can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose, but you can't pick your friend's nose." This seemed like a reasonably astute observation to me when I was eight, but it turns out to be incorrect on a few levels. To begin with, you cannot possibly pick your friends, or else I never would have ended up with Tiny Cooper" (p. 1)."i am constantly torn between killing myself and killing everyone around me.those seem to be the two choices. everything else is just killing time" (p. 22)."This is a great picture of you. This is what you look like," I tell her. And it's true. That's the problem: so many things are true. It's true that I want to smother her with compliments and true that I want to keep my distance. True that I want her to like me and true that I don't. The stupid endless truth speaking out of both sides of its big, stupid mouth. It's what keeps me, stupidly, talking. "Like, you can't know what you look like, right? Whenever you see yourself in the mirror, you know you're looking at you, so you can't help but pose a little. So you never really know. But this--that's what you look like" (pp. 53-54)."still, i can't help thinking that 'getting a life' is something only a complete idiot could believe. like you can just drive to a store and get a life. see it in its shiny box and look inside the plastic window and catch a glimpse of yourself in a new life and say, 'wow, i look much happier--i think this is the life i need to get!' take it to the counter, ring it up, put it on your credit card. if getting a life was that easy, we'd be one blissed-out race. but we're not. so it's like, mom, your life isn't out there waiting, so don't think all you have to do is find it and get it. no, your life is right here. and, yeah, it sucks. lives usually do. so if you want things to change, you don't need to get a life. you need to get off your ass" (p. 65)."There aren't that many Will Graysons," he says. "It's gotta mean something, one Will Grayson meeting another Will Grayson in a random porn store where neither Will Grayson belongs.""Are you suggesting that God brought two of Chicago-land's underage Will Graysons into Frenchy's at the same time?""No, asshole," he says, "but I mean, it must mean something.""Yeah," I say. "It's hard to believe in coincidence, but it's even harder to believe in anything else" (p. 114).Tasty Rating: !!!!read more
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Written in alternating chapters. One Will Grayson is living a closeted homosexual life, conducting an online romance with Isaac, a boy he's never met. The other Will Grayson has a best friend named Tiny who sometimes pushes the boundaries of their friendship. The two WG's meet one night in Chicago, and their lives intertwine in an interesting and unexpected way.read more
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Fabulous audiobook... made me tear up at the end.  read more
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To echo so many that have come before me, this book is full of awesome and I loved it! I have never not become obsessed with a John Green guy (where were these guys when I was in high school?!?), and his Will Grayson did not disappoint. He was classic nerd/cool/snarky/insecure/intelligent/good guy. This is the first fiction by Levithan that I've read, and it was a great intro into his work. His will grayson was horrifically depressed throughout most of the book, but he was still funny and mean and self-deprecating in a way that insults everyone and, you know, hiding his soft gooey center behind all his built up toughness. The secondary characters in each of their separate lives were relatively well-fleshed out for how important they were to both the story and their respective WG. The fact that will grayson's friends are kind of one-dimensional says more about will than it does about Levithan; the reverse is true for Green and his Will. And the one character they share, Tiny Cooper, is always larger than life.Tiny Cooper is fabulous. He's a bit self-centered, but he's also all over the place for his friends. It all revolves around him, but he wants them there and involved, not because he wants them to witness his fabulosity but because they mean the world to him. But here is how Tiny is always described: Tiny Cooper is not the world's gayest person, and he is not the world's largest person, but I believe he may be the world's largest person who is really, really gay, and also the world's gayest person who is really, really large. p.3That's fine, but it immediately reduces Tiny to a caricature of himself (or the guy from Mean Girls). And they do it over and over again. Every time someone mentions him, sees him, thinks about him, even apologizes to him, they reference his size, and not just his height, they gotta throw "300 pounds" in there or something. Calling your best friend (or your boyfriend) fat all the time as if that's his only personality trait (or is even a personality trait to begin with) makes people cringe a little. Tiny has the illustrative joy of being both big and gay, something that is used a lot to describe people's personalities without any irony at all, as if that's even a personality trait to begin with. It's not as obvious as, say, the new "That's So Gay" ads (which I love for their obviousness, but it only works because it's 30 seconds and not 300 pages), but the message is there without the feeling that there is a Message or Important Lesson.And this book, secret lesson and all, is hilarious. It is embarrassing to read on public transportation hilarious. And there's a musical, written by Tiny Cooper about his life. And there's tender first love (complete with Green's trademark awkwardness) and crushing first heartbreak (complete with Levithan's snarky gloom and doom). And there's bad emo poetry that is recognized as being bad emo poetry. And the WGs have some of the best parents in YA I've seen in a while. And if you need more reasons than this to go pick up Will Grayson, Will Grayson, well then, I don't think we can still be friends. :)Book source: Best Christmas present ever!read more
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If I didn't already love John Green enough, this book as permanently cemented my fan girl status in the John Green Nerdfigher Fan Club. And not to leave David Levithan out, because the book wouldn't have worked if it wasn't for his chapters too. The book is told in alternating chapters by two Chicago suburb boys, both named Will Grayson. They meet half way through and both are working to figure out who they are and what they are doing with their lives. The characters are amazing, particularly Tiny Cooper, as they are brought to life through the narration of both characters. While the plot is nothing out of the ordinary, the alternating chapters and the desire to know how it all will work out make the book fly. This book is wonderful for those who love Green and Levithan's work, as well as anyone who is trying to find their place in the world. There is a fair amount of swearing, and some drinking, but it's minor and not the point of the story. Overall this was a fabulous (as Tiny Cooper would say) book and would be great for older teens.read more
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Enjoyed the stories of the two Wills, although I found Tiny Cooper to be just irritating and the big musical number at the end didn't wow me in the slightest and I had trouble picturing it getting standing ovations from anyone apart from Tiny's closest friends.read more
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5Q 4P (my codes) 4Q 4P (actual VOYA codes)I mostly agree with the VOYA rating, though I do think the writing is flawless and hilarious and bitingly accurate in its portrayal of love and loss, longing both for love and acceptance and recognition in the primordial soup of high school. I do think this book has wide appeal, especially in its thoughtful portrayal of both straight and gay relationships, their commonalities and pitfalls. I laughed out loud, shed a few tears, and rooted for Tiny and his crazy musical the whole way!Also, this is a great example of how sexual encounters among teens can be modeled and nurtured in a healthy, positive way.read more
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3 1/2 stars. This is the hilarious, witty, and at times moving story of two teen boys, both named Will Grayson. Each Will is written in alternating chapters by a different author. I really loved about half of this book (the half written by John Green). I am a huge JG fan so I guess that makes sense. The other half, written by David Levithan was good but I just didn't laugh/cry/think as much with it. I was all set to give this book 4 stars but the ending just didn't do it for me. Maybe because it ended with the Will Grayson written by DL.The JG part had a lot of his hallmarks (nerdy/cute main character, goofy best friend, intellectual girl love interest) but it felt fresh anyway. I liked the themes about friendship and taking chances. I definitely recommend this book!read more
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I'm currently going through a bit of a John Green binge, so imagine my delight at discovering that David Levithan, who co-authored this book with Green, also co-authored Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist! I only mention this because the reason I love this book so much is the same reason that I loved that film (sadly I have not yet read the book). In the words of Scott Pilgrim, 'It's just nice, y'know'. All those young, insecure male characters on the cusp of adulthood that could easily be played by Michael Cera or Jesse Eisenberg, I just fall in love with them. And love, of course, is at the heart of this book. Anyone familiar with that Greek concept of there being four kinds of love (I won't go into it here), would have some sort of love-spotting field day. But it all comes naturally, and doesn't seem to be 'about' anything in particular (tagging this book felt really fascist - it felt absurd to reduce its themes to little hyperlinked boxes). One of the main characters is depressed, but it's not a book about depression. Loads of the main characters are gay, but it's not about homosexuality. Pretty much all the characters have self-esteem issues (don't we all), but it's not a book about learning to love yourself. It's about all these things, and that's why it's such a good coming-of-age novel.read more
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David Levithan and John Green have created two entirely unique characters existing in almost the same space in the book. The unique storytelling modes and the way that each character truly comes through in the writing styles is marvelous, and I could not put the book down. Additionally, the pair deals skillfully with bullying and homophobia in high school settings through the humor created by their character Tiny Cooper. Another must-read book for nerdfighters!read more
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John Green and David Levithan deliver a delightful, devilishly funny novel about the trials and tribulations of love and friendship in high school. Green and Levithan's characters are smart, silly, and sincere; it's hard not to fall in love with them!read more
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The paths of two teenagers, both named Will Grayson, cross one fateful night. Their stories are told in alternating chapters, and their personalities (and writing styles) are different enough that it's easy to keep track of who's narrating. But despite the title and narrators, this book is in many ways more about the larger-than-life Tiny Cooper and his struggles with identity, love, and musical theater. I loved and empathized with all the characters. I was at times horrified and delighted at the various twists and turns in the plot, always wanting more more more. And this is one book I wish came with a soundtrack so I can actually hear all the songs in Tiny Dancer/Hold Me Closer. In short, I was completely and utterly sucked in. This was my gym book - that is, the book that lived in my gym bag to be read while on the exercise bike - and I found that I didn't want to get off the bike when my thirty minutes were up. Now that, my friend, is the mark of an engrossing book. I've already added pretty much the entire combined catalogs of Green and Levithan to my wish list, and I hope fervently that they write another book together. Highly recommended.read more
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LOVED this book. I listened to the audio version and it was like Glee! John Green does a great job portraying teenagers (boys in particular). The story was current and relatable. Great premise. Great characters. I was sad to see it end!read more
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Will Grayson tries to live his live without being noticed -- unfortunately, that’s hard to do when his best friend is Tiny Cooper, who’s really large and really gay, and also just happens to be writing him into his flashy, autobiographical musical production. On the other hand, Will Grayson is emotionally depressed, angry at life, and has just had his heart crushed by his first love and is now struggling to find something good in the world to hang on to. These are two very different Will Grayson’s, but when they meet in a chance encounter both of their lives will be changed forever."Will Grayson, Will Grayson" is the winner of numerous awards, among them a 2011 YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults pick, the 2011 Children’s Choice Book Award for Teen Choice Book of the Year, as well as being an ALA Stonewall Award Honor Book. It’s a collaborative gem written by two of YA’s most popular authors, John Green and David Levithan, with each author tackling one Will Grayson a piece with writing styles and voices uniquely their own. Heartfelt, and often hilarious, the book explores the time in a teenager’s life that is all about understanding who you are and learning to appreciate people for all of their quirks and faults. It’s filled with friendships, first loves, and characters that any teen could find themselves relating to.read more
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This is the story of two Will Graysons. One is the unassuming, regular kid, always lurking in the shadows of his best friend, the 6 foot 6, fabulously gay Tiny Cooper. The other is a tortured soul, bolstered only by his online flirtation with Isaac. Their paths cross one night in downtown Chicago, leading both of them on unexpected, usually hilarious, but often poignant, relationship journeys, culminating in one high school musical spectacular.John Green and David Levithan are masters in examining the male psyche with equal shades humor and authenticity. Each of the Will Graysons are not without their flaws, but still manage to be likable and relatable. But the true heart of the book lies with Tiny Cooper, who helps shape both of the title characters. His character will resonate with lots of teens, whether they’re straight, gay, bi, questioning, or anything in between. With alternating points of view, especially when the characters have the same name, the story takes a few chapters to settle into a rhythm, but the narrative doesn’t get bogged down with too many plot points or side characters. There are a few points when reality gets stretched or sped up to further the plot, but I was willing to allow a temporary suspension of disbelief for the sake of the story. This book might not be for everyone — John Green critics will find the usual regular guy meets manic pixie dream girl trope here and the casual acceptance of the gay characters by the other high schoolers is a little too easy — but there’s a lot to like here.read more
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Very sweet, as usual from David L., and I liked it better than the other John Green book I read.

I enjoyed both sides of the story, and loved Tiny Cooper, although I felt a little bit too much like we were SUPPOSED to love him.

I thought the ending was a bit of a letdown. I wanted a better resolution with the Maura situation, and I thought the final "grand gesture" was just kind of meh.

Still, I read the whole thing in one sitting and that has to say something. I'd say 3 1/2 stars but I'll round up instead of down.

ETA: you know, in hindsight I'm going to round down after all.read more
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WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON. has been sitting on my to-be-read pile for quite some time. Other books kept pushing ahead in line until, finally, I took it off the stack and stuck it in my bag, refusing to look at another book until I'd finished it. At first, I wasn't as enthralled as I'd imagined I'd be. I thought that John Green's Will Grayson was hilarious and I was enjoying the sections he narrated, but I simply couldn't connect with David Levithan's Will. He was just too for me. Too negative, too sarcastic, too much in general. I found him extremely annoying - until he met the other Will Grayson. I can't pinpoint the exact change that occurred, but I know that when the Will Graysons met in that "unlikely corner of Chicago," I started to like Levithan's Will, sometimes even more than I liked Green's! *gasp* Once I made a connection with both Will Graysons, my attitude towards the book changed completely. At first, I could easily set the novel down and was distracted by other things, but after, it was nearly impossible to tear my eyes from the page. So, if you've yet to read WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON, don't give up on it if you aren't connecting with both characters. There's a chance that this will change for you, as it did for me, but, even if it doesn't, this novel is definitely worth finishing!I can't write a review of this novel without mentioning Tiny Cooper, who is both a best friend and love interest in the novel. He was a fabulous character and, of all the characters, I'd have to say that he shines the brightest. I'd love to read a novel from his point of view!Overall, WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON is a hilarious novel written by two phenomenal authors. It reminded me just how amazing John Green's writing is and has encouraged me to seek out more by David Levithan.read more
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I read this in an airport in Houston and oh my GOD did I love it. I adore John Green and David Levithan. WGWG is hilarious and sad and adorable and strange and that makes it so much awesome that I don't even know. I really need to reread it, if only because it's so awesome. I wish I could rec it more, but it's got some stuff in it that would offend some of my patrons (sadly), but that's okay. Because I just make all my friends read it. I hope they do more books together.read more
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WOW - just finished this amazing book by two authors whose work I especially admire. I was nervous starting it because their previous solo work has been SO good. Could their success really continue in a collaboration? Yes, it absolutely can.Two teen guys named Will Grayson meet under extraordinary circumstances. The first rarely has meaningful relationships because of his two rules for life: 1) shut up, and 2) don't care too much. These rules have served him well so far, but it's when he breaks his own rules that he (albeit, painfully) grows as a person and as a friend. His best friend from childhood--talented, boisterous, bigger-than-life, very gay--Tiny Cooper helps Will in this process, as does Jane, the girl who Will wants, and doesn't want, to date.The other Will Grayson, is even harder. Suffering from clinical depression and generally hating life and everyone around him, the only relationship in his life which means anything to him is with Isaac, the boy of his dreams he knows only through the internet. With Isaac, he can unveil the real Will, the one who doesn't want to hate or hurt.This story is ultimately about love - in friendship, in fights, in new beginnings. And it is SO smart. From Tiny Cooper's musical: "Love is a miracle, everywhere, every time." This was one of the rare books that made me laugh and cry. It was beautifully done.read more
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I am a big John Green fan; I loved Paper Towns and An Abundance of Katherines and I have Looking for Alaska sitting on my shelf waiting to be read. So when I saw a new book by John Green I couldn't wait to read it. This was a wonderful book with wonderful characters.The book switches between two different viewpoints; each viewpoint is from a different Will Grayson. The first Will Grayson is best friends with a huge gay teen named Tiny. Will kind of lives in Tiny's shadow. Tiny is preparing a glorious musical for high school that he wants Will's help with; Will is struggling with his relationship with Tiny as well as with how he feels about a cute girl named Jane. Tiny is trying to force Jane and Will into dating. Then there is the Other Will Grayson, who we will call OWG, who is having an online relationship with a teenage guy; they finally decided to meet in person. OWG is also dealing with his best friend who is a girl but wants to be more than that and with ongoing clinical depression. Things culminate into craziness when Will Grayson enters a porn shop out of boredom and bumps into OWG, who is looking for his online boyfriend. The reader is left on the edge of the seat wondering what will happen with Will Grayson; will him and Tiny stay friends, will he hook up with Jane, will the musical go on? What will happen to OWG when he tries to hook up with his online crush? Okay I am not sure if the above clarifies things, but remember this is a John Green book...so despite (or maybe because of) all the weird relationship stuff going on this is a really great book. You have a lot of wonderfully realistic characters dealing with a lot of issues. Green and Levithan do an excellent job capturing the intricacies of all of the teenage angst that these characters are going through. The characters are wonderfully quirky and easy to sympathize with and love. I have never read anything by Levithan before, and I am assuming he wrote what I am calling the OWG parts of the book (since that Will Grayson was introduced second). He does a great job capturing the troubled moments of that character as well and after reading this book I really want to read more from Levithan.I was also really impressed with how the Will Graysons' parents were portrayed; the parents are understanding people who are trying to do the best that they can as their sons struggle through high school and adolescence. I think most parents really do try to do the best that they can for their kids, (despite what a lot of YA literature portrays) so it was nice to see this...it leaves you feeling good.The character of Tiny bears mentioning because he is central to so much of the book. Tiny is large and gay and proud of it; he portrays a sense of positivity that is prevalent throughout the whole book...and in a way it is really him that drives the story. You have to love Tiny; his confidence in himself, the way he tries to exude happiness, his melodrama, and his utter belief in love.The writing of this book was high quality and super easy to read. It was incredibly engaging and I found myself reading the whole book in a day, unable to put it down for longer than a few hours at a time. There is something magical about the story and the way it is written; even if there isn't actually and fantasy here.I know this book has created some controversy as to whether or not it is age appropriate. I agree that it is probably best suited for mid to older teens. There is a ton of swearing, lots of talk about sex, and loads of gay sexual references. All of this was fairly pertinent to the story, so I don't think it was frivolous. At heart this is more a book about friendship, about love, and about accepting yourself and others for who they are.Overall a wonderful read. It leaves the reader feeling positive and upbeat. The book addresses issues about self-confidence, belonging, GLBT rights, accepting people for who they are, love, and happiness. This book just cements John Green more firmly in my mind as a must read author. It adds David Levithan to my list of authors I want to read more from. I have had Levithan's Boy Meets Boy on my "to read" list for a while now and this book makes me bump that up further on the list.read more
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Green and Leviathan write convincingly from the voice of each titular Will Grayson. The high-school story is both funny and on a search for emotional truth. Green manages to make his manic pixie dream girl (Tiny) flawed from the beginning. I really wish The Maybe Dead Cats were real. And, knowing The Nerdfighters, they will be shortly.read more
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This books is composed of pure joy. It's not entirely happy, and bad things happen, it hasn't got romantic happy ending for every character introduced, but it is bursting at the seams with joy. As is Tiny Cooper, my pick for hero of the tale, regardless of the eponymous Will Graysons.
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Can I just state that I love Tiny Cooper? He is, by far, the best character in this entire story! The authors did an amazing job of describing his sense of fashion, his unbelievable size, and his love of...well, everything. You WANT to have him as a friend, want to be a part of the fabulousness that is Tiny, and honestly, just want to be loved by him.As for the Will Graysons, I loved them to a certain extent as well. The first one is Tiny's best friend, and spends most of the book trying to let go of an exterior that is protecting him from feeling anything. He is insecure, but better to hold off from life than actually put himself out there in any way. The other Will Grayson is more intriguing to me - very dark, depressed, and vulnerable in his own right. He is coming to grips with who he is and once he realizes it, he's actually gaining some confidence in his life. I kept wanting to know more about him.I loved MOST of the storyline, except the ending. It just sounded a little too much like a mushy episode of GLEE. I either felt like it needed more or less, but ended up feeling a little bit disappointed. What I did love was the theme of the overall book. It was all about friendship, love, and forgiveness and serves as a message to all of us to truly let those in our lives know how much we care about them.
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Will Grayson, Will Grayson is the newest book by young adult author John Green, and it’s co-written with David Levithan. The book is about two characters, both named Will Grayson, who meet up for the first time randomly one night. It follows both of their lives – when they are apart, and when their lives intersect. This is about all the book jacket tells you about the story, and that description really leaves a lot out. For instance, you would have no idea that one of the main themes of the book is homosexuality, and it also deals with depression.We are first introduced to Will Grayson #1, a teenager who gets by in life by abiding by the rules of “shutting up and not caring.” His best friend Tiny Cooper is literally huge and fabulously gay, and is in many ways the opposite of Will. Will Grayson #2, however, is moody, depressed, and secretly gay. All of their lives change one night when Will Grayson #1 and Tiny go into Chicago to see a concert and Will Grayson #2 goes into Chicago to meet his online lover Isaac. Once all of their lives intersect, things are never the same for any of them.In general Will Grayson, Will Grayson is a really good, intriguing book, and its biggest strength is that the authors seem to truly understand the adolescent mind. From the description you could think of a lot of stereotypical characters: the extremely gay, always in the spotlight friend, the depressed and moody Will Grayson. But there is so much more to them than just these simple definitions. The characters have real depth to them and the situations are realistic. It’s the type of book that you can’t stop reading because you want to know what happens next. And ultimately it has a good message to carry with you in life.One of the only problems with the novel may be that because the characters are so real and so faulty, it’s hard to like any of them. Will Grayson #1 is infuriating because he refuses to care about things or people in his life for most of the novel. Will Grayson #2 is downright mean sometimes, and Tiny Cooper is annoyingly self-centered; the type of guy that goes through dozens of boyfriends and is convinced he is completely heartbroken every time. The only truly likable character is Jane, and while she certainly has her faults as well you like her anyway. The others… maybe by the end you like them, but it’s certainly hard to get started.Another huge plus to this book is the format that it is written in. Every chapter alternates between Will Graysons as the narrator. Odd chapters are Will Grayson #1, even chapters are Will Grayson #2. This could certainly be confusing, but the characters are so different that you can usually tell right away who’s talking, even if you don’t look at the chapter. This is partly due to the fact that John Green wrote all of the odd chapters and David Levithan wrote the even chapters, and their writing styles are slightly different. Also, Will Grayson #2 writes in all lowercase, and instead of using quotation marks for speech he writes the character’s name and a colon, like in a script.The only other small negative that I have is the ending of the book. The whole time it’s building up to this big surprise ending, and the ending certainly is a surprise, but it’s slightly confusing. You’re left wondering, “What exactly just happened?” And that’s not exactly the most satisfying way to end a book. They traded explanation for suspense, and I could’ve used just a little more explanation for the ending. Maybe someone can explain it to me, but I was a little confused, though it was still touching.
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Took me longer to warm up to Levithan’s Will Grayson, but I think that may have been intentional. By half way through, I was in love with almost every character. Tiny Cooper is a delight. Ending didn’t quite work for me, but it’s a small quibble with this amazing book.
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Having heard entirely varying accounts of this collaborative novel, I approached it with both hope and trepidation. I worried that the format of the even numbered chapters (without capitalization, ala texting or instant messaging) would irritate me to the point that I could not get through the book. Thankfully, both Will Graysons, from whose perspectives the reader sees, are intelligent and use decent grammar. The lack of capitalization becomes easy enough to ignore, especially for people of the instant communication generation. Format aside, this book was absolutely fabulous, much like Tiny Cooper. The characters are flawed and can actually be imagined to be real high school students. The story and writing has a bit of magic; perhaps it is simply the magic of truth or acceptance, but it is a magic. Heterosexual and homosexual love are both celebrated in this fabulous teen novel that has been a long time in coming. I highly recommend this!
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I'm not sure why I held off reading Will Grayson, Will Grayson for as long as I did. Something about me rebelled against the story - maybe it was the fact it was written by two authors or maybe the summary didn't jive for me... but after reading titles by both authors (And LOVING them) I decided to take the plunge.Willx2 did not disappoint, people. This book has been reviewed, and then reviewed and chatted about some more, so let me talk to those of you who are on the fence, or just a bit disinterested, as I was.This isn't a mind-blowing story. I didn't get goosebumps at the end, or fall into fits of swooning love like so many reviews I've seen. It didn't change the world for me, or make me throw my arms up and sing hallelujah in my best Tiny voice. All that said, this book entertained me, made me smile, and made me thoroughly appreciate the differences (and similarities) of two of my favorite authors.The story will keep you moving. I began this book as activities for school started and I found myself longing to find a quiet spot and start reading again. It's a quiet sort of addiction, this story. It left behind little tugs that could only be satisfied by reading just one more chapter - just one. But those chapters added up and I ended up finishing off the entire book in an evening, then guiltily looking at it like it was the remains of an entire chocolate cake I'd eaten in one swoop and would be wishing I could enjoy the next day.So Will Grayson, Will Grayson, you are my delicious chocolate cake. You weren't the best chocolate cake I've ever had so I'll run out into the street and sing your praises, but you were pretty darn satisfying and I wish I had more of you to read today.
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Two teenage boys, both named Will Grayson, meet randomly one night at an unlikely venue in Chicago. After that night, their lives become intertwined, culminating with an unlikely relationship and an over the top musical number!The story alternates point of views between the boys – with one Will Grayson being written by John Green, the other by David Levithan.The first Will Grayson is the epitome of a John Green character – smart talking, socially awkward, and incredibly relatable. Will’s best friend is Tiny, a larger than life, flamboyant gay football player with a passion for musical theatre. This Will is busy sorting out his feelings for a hip girl, Jane, while trying to fit in with his classmates and keep Tiny grounded in reality.The second will grayson, who never uses capital letters, is a closeted gay teenage boy, struggling with depression and who lives in an apartment with his mother. will is enamoured with isaac, a boy he meets in an online chat room. will and isaac plan to finally meet up one night in Chicago.This novel is exactly what I have come to expect from a John Green novel – witty prose, relatable characters, with a compelling plot. I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, and hope for another collaboration between the authors. I would love to see spinoff following the life of secondary character, Tiny!Will Grayson, Will Grayson is a 2013 Senior YRCA nominee. It has also been named YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults and received the Stonewall Children’s and Young Adult Literature Award.
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The best sort of Young Adult fiction - you wish it was real so you could be friends with them. A lot of really wise moments in this book. I loved the relationship that Will Grayson 1 had with his parents. The conversation with his father about the difference between having a child and having a yacht was super touching.
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Green and Leviathan have collaborated on a story about two very different Will Graysons who both happen to live in the Chicago area and happen to meet in a very unusual place. Each author writes one particular Will Grayson, and their styles are very different. Having not read enough David Leviathan, I can’t remember if it’s his style to write with no punctuation and very sparse text, but that’s how his Will Grayson is written. Leviathan’s Will Grayson is gay and depressed and full of anger at life. John Green’s Will Grayson is not participating in his life, either, but at least his life is fully realized. Green has a way of creating memorable characters who are full of life and creativity, and he has written some of his best characters here. Sometimes when characters cross over into Leviathan’s narrative they become larger than life and more cardboard than real, which may be part of his writing style. I think this is an interesting collaboration, and the final musical scene is really genius and entertaining – at the end, this book celebrates life and love no matter what.
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Green, J. , & Levithan D. (2010). Will Grayson, Will Grayson. New York: Dutton.9780525421580310 pagesAppetizer: Set in Chicago, this novel goes back-and-forth, sharing the story of two teenage boys named Will Grayson. In the odd-numbered chapters, John Green writes the story of the first Will Grayson, who lives life by two simple rules: 1) Don't care to much and 2) Shut up. But his friend Tiny Cooper (who is HUGE, gay and plays football and is writing a play about Will and him) makes it difficult for Will One to stick to his rules and he soon finds himself forced to help with Tiny's musical production of his life story, while resisting a girl named Jane who he both likes and doesn't like.David Levithan's Will Grayson--of the even chapters--is struggling with his depression. The one bright spot in his life is his love for a boy named Isaac who lives in Ohio. But Will won't admit that he's in love with Isaac to anyone. He won't even tell his only friend Maura that Isaac exists. As Will and Isaac plan to meet for the first time, Will prepares to go to Chicago, a trip that will send him to run into the other Will Grayson. Both will find that their lives are changed by their meeting and following interactions.As far as co-written experiments go, I really loved this one. The two Wills' have very distinct voices and Levithan's Will only narrates in lower case and presents dialogue in script format. Green's Will is also often referred to as Grayson instead of by his first name, which helps to keep the already very-distinct voices separate and clear with just a glance at the page.I absolutely loved Green's writing. It was him at his best--super quirky and humorous. He still hasn't really wandered away from his tendency to write from the perspective of a tall, skinny, upper-class white guy with a best friend who is somehow marked or marginalized. But, while a limited perspective, he writes what he writes WELL. I found that I enjoyed his Will Grayson much more than I kinda-sorta liked the first half of Quentin in PaperTowns. Although, I still have to admit, I found that my passion did fade in the last third of the book. Maybe there was a little less humor, maybe Green's Will Grayson was kind of squared away and the story began to belong to Tiny and Levithan's Will. But there were fewer chuckles on my part. I was surprised by Levithan's writing. The only books I'd previously read by him was Boy Meets Boy (which is wonderful, humorous LUV! and sticks to the fluffier-side of life as a homosexual teen) and Wide Awake (which I felt 'eeh' about). So, it was very surprising to start chapter two and read the dark voice of his Will Grayson. Startling, in fact. But as I kept reading, I started to like that Will Grayson more, as he became more rounded than just the consuming depression and anger that initially surprised me.The character, Tiny Cooper has a central role in both Will Graysons' lives, helping to make this book extend beyond being about romantic love, to being about all love, (but particularly friendship love!). But, after finishing the book, I still felt I didn't completely know Tiny. Yeah, I thought both authors did a fair job of presenting his character consistently, but I still felt I only understood Tiny at the surface level. Part of my problem could be how outgoing and energetic Tiny was as a character. I'm more of the withdrawn, silent type, and I still have trouble understanding what makes talkative people tick when they're real and I can actually ask them "hey, what makes you tick?" I have yet to get an answer that is sensical or that doesn't make me feel exhausted just listening.I'm glad this book came out when it did, because next week I plan to do a lesson on stories that are co-constructed. While I'd planned to focus in part on Chester (in which a character battles his author for power over the story) and on the awesomeness that is mad libs (oh girl scout camp in fourth and fifth grade, you will always being associated with these and my childhood deep-rooted fear of forgetting what an adverb is), this will add a nice YA touch to the talk.Dinner Conversation:"When I was little, my dad used to tell me, "Will, you can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose, but you can't pick your friend's nose." This seemed like a reasonably astute observation to me when I was eight, but it turns out to be incorrect on a few levels. To begin with, you cannot possibly pick your friends, or else I never would have ended up with Tiny Cooper" (p. 1)."i am constantly torn between killing myself and killing everyone around me.those seem to be the two choices. everything else is just killing time" (p. 22)."This is a great picture of you. This is what you look like," I tell her. And it's true. That's the problem: so many things are true. It's true that I want to smother her with compliments and true that I want to keep my distance. True that I want her to like me and true that I don't. The stupid endless truth speaking out of both sides of its big, stupid mouth. It's what keeps me, stupidly, talking. "Like, you can't know what you look like, right? Whenever you see yourself in the mirror, you know you're looking at you, so you can't help but pose a little. So you never really know. But this--that's what you look like" (pp. 53-54)."still, i can't help thinking that 'getting a life' is something only a complete idiot could believe. like you can just drive to a store and get a life. see it in its shiny box and look inside the plastic window and catch a glimpse of yourself in a new life and say, 'wow, i look much happier--i think this is the life i need to get!' take it to the counter, ring it up, put it on your credit card. if getting a life was that easy, we'd be one blissed-out race. but we're not. so it's like, mom, your life isn't out there waiting, so don't think all you have to do is find it and get it. no, your life is right here. and, yeah, it sucks. lives usually do. so if you want things to change, you don't need to get a life. you need to get off your ass" (p. 65)."There aren't that many Will Graysons," he says. "It's gotta mean something, one Will Grayson meeting another Will Grayson in a random porn store where neither Will Grayson belongs.""Are you suggesting that God brought two of Chicago-land's underage Will Graysons into Frenchy's at the same time?""No, asshole," he says, "but I mean, it must mean something.""Yeah," I say. "It's hard to believe in coincidence, but it's even harder to believe in anything else" (p. 114).Tasty Rating: !!!!
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Written in alternating chapters. One Will Grayson is living a closeted homosexual life, conducting an online romance with Isaac, a boy he's never met. The other Will Grayson has a best friend named Tiny who sometimes pushes the boundaries of their friendship. The two WG's meet one night in Chicago, and their lives intertwine in an interesting and unexpected way.
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Fabulous audiobook... made me tear up at the end.  
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To echo so many that have come before me, this book is full of awesome and I loved it! I have never not become obsessed with a John Green guy (where were these guys when I was in high school?!?), and his Will Grayson did not disappoint. He was classic nerd/cool/snarky/insecure/intelligent/good guy. This is the first fiction by Levithan that I've read, and it was a great intro into his work. His will grayson was horrifically depressed throughout most of the book, but he was still funny and mean and self-deprecating in a way that insults everyone and, you know, hiding his soft gooey center behind all his built up toughness. The secondary characters in each of their separate lives were relatively well-fleshed out for how important they were to both the story and their respective WG. The fact that will grayson's friends are kind of one-dimensional says more about will than it does about Levithan; the reverse is true for Green and his Will. And the one character they share, Tiny Cooper, is always larger than life.Tiny Cooper is fabulous. He's a bit self-centered, but he's also all over the place for his friends. It all revolves around him, but he wants them there and involved, not because he wants them to witness his fabulosity but because they mean the world to him. But here is how Tiny is always described: Tiny Cooper is not the world's gayest person, and he is not the world's largest person, but I believe he may be the world's largest person who is really, really gay, and also the world's gayest person who is really, really large. p.3That's fine, but it immediately reduces Tiny to a caricature of himself (or the guy from Mean Girls). And they do it over and over again. Every time someone mentions him, sees him, thinks about him, even apologizes to him, they reference his size, and not just his height, they gotta throw "300 pounds" in there or something. Calling your best friend (or your boyfriend) fat all the time as if that's his only personality trait (or is even a personality trait to begin with) makes people cringe a little. Tiny has the illustrative joy of being both big and gay, something that is used a lot to describe people's personalities without any irony at all, as if that's even a personality trait to begin with. It's not as obvious as, say, the new "That's So Gay" ads (which I love for their obviousness, but it only works because it's 30 seconds and not 300 pages), but the message is there without the feeling that there is a Message or Important Lesson.And this book, secret lesson and all, is hilarious. It is embarrassing to read on public transportation hilarious. And there's a musical, written by Tiny Cooper about his life. And there's tender first love (complete with Green's trademark awkwardness) and crushing first heartbreak (complete with Levithan's snarky gloom and doom). And there's bad emo poetry that is recognized as being bad emo poetry. And the WGs have some of the best parents in YA I've seen in a while. And if you need more reasons than this to go pick up Will Grayson, Will Grayson, well then, I don't think we can still be friends. :)Book source: Best Christmas present ever!
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If I didn't already love John Green enough, this book as permanently cemented my fan girl status in the John Green Nerdfigher Fan Club. And not to leave David Levithan out, because the book wouldn't have worked if it wasn't for his chapters too. The book is told in alternating chapters by two Chicago suburb boys, both named Will Grayson. They meet half way through and both are working to figure out who they are and what they are doing with their lives. The characters are amazing, particularly Tiny Cooper, as they are brought to life through the narration of both characters. While the plot is nothing out of the ordinary, the alternating chapters and the desire to know how it all will work out make the book fly. This book is wonderful for those who love Green and Levithan's work, as well as anyone who is trying to find their place in the world. There is a fair amount of swearing, and some drinking, but it's minor and not the point of the story. Overall this was a fabulous (as Tiny Cooper would say) book and would be great for older teens.
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Enjoyed the stories of the two Wills, although I found Tiny Cooper to be just irritating and the big musical number at the end didn't wow me in the slightest and I had trouble picturing it getting standing ovations from anyone apart from Tiny's closest friends.
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5Q 4P (my codes) 4Q 4P (actual VOYA codes)I mostly agree with the VOYA rating, though I do think the writing is flawless and hilarious and bitingly accurate in its portrayal of love and loss, longing both for love and acceptance and recognition in the primordial soup of high school. I do think this book has wide appeal, especially in its thoughtful portrayal of both straight and gay relationships, their commonalities and pitfalls. I laughed out loud, shed a few tears, and rooted for Tiny and his crazy musical the whole way!Also, this is a great example of how sexual encounters among teens can be modeled and nurtured in a healthy, positive way.
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3 1/2 stars. This is the hilarious, witty, and at times moving story of two teen boys, both named Will Grayson. Each Will is written in alternating chapters by a different author. I really loved about half of this book (the half written by John Green). I am a huge JG fan so I guess that makes sense. The other half, written by David Levithan was good but I just didn't laugh/cry/think as much with it. I was all set to give this book 4 stars but the ending just didn't do it for me. Maybe because it ended with the Will Grayson written by DL.The JG part had a lot of his hallmarks (nerdy/cute main character, goofy best friend, intellectual girl love interest) but it felt fresh anyway. I liked the themes about friendship and taking chances. I definitely recommend this book!
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I'm currently going through a bit of a John Green binge, so imagine my delight at discovering that David Levithan, who co-authored this book with Green, also co-authored Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist! I only mention this because the reason I love this book so much is the same reason that I loved that film (sadly I have not yet read the book). In the words of Scott Pilgrim, 'It's just nice, y'know'. All those young, insecure male characters on the cusp of adulthood that could easily be played by Michael Cera or Jesse Eisenberg, I just fall in love with them. And love, of course, is at the heart of this book. Anyone familiar with that Greek concept of there being four kinds of love (I won't go into it here), would have some sort of love-spotting field day. But it all comes naturally, and doesn't seem to be 'about' anything in particular (tagging this book felt really fascist - it felt absurd to reduce its themes to little hyperlinked boxes). One of the main characters is depressed, but it's not a book about depression. Loads of the main characters are gay, but it's not about homosexuality. Pretty much all the characters have self-esteem issues (don't we all), but it's not a book about learning to love yourself. It's about all these things, and that's why it's such a good coming-of-age novel.
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David Levithan and John Green have created two entirely unique characters existing in almost the same space in the book. The unique storytelling modes and the way that each character truly comes through in the writing styles is marvelous, and I could not put the book down. Additionally, the pair deals skillfully with bullying and homophobia in high school settings through the humor created by their character Tiny Cooper. Another must-read book for nerdfighters!
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John Green and David Levithan deliver a delightful, devilishly funny novel about the trials and tribulations of love and friendship in high school. Green and Levithan's characters are smart, silly, and sincere; it's hard not to fall in love with them!
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The paths of two teenagers, both named Will Grayson, cross one fateful night. Their stories are told in alternating chapters, and their personalities (and writing styles) are different enough that it's easy to keep track of who's narrating. But despite the title and narrators, this book is in many ways more about the larger-than-life Tiny Cooper and his struggles with identity, love, and musical theater. I loved and empathized with all the characters. I was at times horrified and delighted at the various twists and turns in the plot, always wanting more more more. And this is one book I wish came with a soundtrack so I can actually hear all the songs in Tiny Dancer/Hold Me Closer. In short, I was completely and utterly sucked in. This was my gym book - that is, the book that lived in my gym bag to be read while on the exercise bike - and I found that I didn't want to get off the bike when my thirty minutes were up. Now that, my friend, is the mark of an engrossing book. I've already added pretty much the entire combined catalogs of Green and Levithan to my wish list, and I hope fervently that they write another book together. Highly recommended.
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LOVED this book. I listened to the audio version and it was like Glee! John Green does a great job portraying teenagers (boys in particular). The story was current and relatable. Great premise. Great characters. I was sad to see it end!
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Will Grayson tries to live his live without being noticed -- unfortunately, that’s hard to do when his best friend is Tiny Cooper, who’s really large and really gay, and also just happens to be writing him into his flashy, autobiographical musical production. On the other hand, Will Grayson is emotionally depressed, angry at life, and has just had his heart crushed by his first love and is now struggling to find something good in the world to hang on to. These are two very different Will Grayson’s, but when they meet in a chance encounter both of their lives will be changed forever."Will Grayson, Will Grayson" is the winner of numerous awards, among them a 2011 YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults pick, the 2011 Children’s Choice Book Award for Teen Choice Book of the Year, as well as being an ALA Stonewall Award Honor Book. It’s a collaborative gem written by two of YA’s most popular authors, John Green and David Levithan, with each author tackling one Will Grayson a piece with writing styles and voices uniquely their own. Heartfelt, and often hilarious, the book explores the time in a teenager’s life that is all about understanding who you are and learning to appreciate people for all of their quirks and faults. It’s filled with friendships, first loves, and characters that any teen could find themselves relating to.
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This is the story of two Will Graysons. One is the unassuming, regular kid, always lurking in the shadows of his best friend, the 6 foot 6, fabulously gay Tiny Cooper. The other is a tortured soul, bolstered only by his online flirtation with Isaac. Their paths cross one night in downtown Chicago, leading both of them on unexpected, usually hilarious, but often poignant, relationship journeys, culminating in one high school musical spectacular.John Green and David Levithan are masters in examining the male psyche with equal shades humor and authenticity. Each of the Will Graysons are not without their flaws, but still manage to be likable and relatable. But the true heart of the book lies with Tiny Cooper, who helps shape both of the title characters. His character will resonate with lots of teens, whether they’re straight, gay, bi, questioning, or anything in between. With alternating points of view, especially when the characters have the same name, the story takes a few chapters to settle into a rhythm, but the narrative doesn’t get bogged down with too many plot points or side characters. There are a few points when reality gets stretched or sped up to further the plot, but I was willing to allow a temporary suspension of disbelief for the sake of the story. This book might not be for everyone — John Green critics will find the usual regular guy meets manic pixie dream girl trope here and the casual acceptance of the gay characters by the other high schoolers is a little too easy — but there’s a lot to like here.
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Very sweet, as usual from David L., and I liked it better than the other John Green book I read.

I enjoyed both sides of the story, and loved Tiny Cooper, although I felt a little bit too much like we were SUPPOSED to love him.

I thought the ending was a bit of a letdown. I wanted a better resolution with the Maura situation, and I thought the final "grand gesture" was just kind of meh.

Still, I read the whole thing in one sitting and that has to say something. I'd say 3 1/2 stars but I'll round up instead of down.

ETA: you know, in hindsight I'm going to round down after all.
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WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON. has been sitting on my to-be-read pile for quite some time. Other books kept pushing ahead in line until, finally, I took it off the stack and stuck it in my bag, refusing to look at another book until I'd finished it. At first, I wasn't as enthralled as I'd imagined I'd be. I thought that John Green's Will Grayson was hilarious and I was enjoying the sections he narrated, but I simply couldn't connect with David Levithan's Will. He was just too for me. Too negative, too sarcastic, too much in general. I found him extremely annoying - until he met the other Will Grayson. I can't pinpoint the exact change that occurred, but I know that when the Will Graysons met in that "unlikely corner of Chicago," I started to like Levithan's Will, sometimes even more than I liked Green's! *gasp* Once I made a connection with both Will Graysons, my attitude towards the book changed completely. At first, I could easily set the novel down and was distracted by other things, but after, it was nearly impossible to tear my eyes from the page. So, if you've yet to read WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON, don't give up on it if you aren't connecting with both characters. There's a chance that this will change for you, as it did for me, but, even if it doesn't, this novel is definitely worth finishing!I can't write a review of this novel without mentioning Tiny Cooper, who is both a best friend and love interest in the novel. He was a fabulous character and, of all the characters, I'd have to say that he shines the brightest. I'd love to read a novel from his point of view!Overall, WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON is a hilarious novel written by two phenomenal authors. It reminded me just how amazing John Green's writing is and has encouraged me to seek out more by David Levithan.
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I read this in an airport in Houston and oh my GOD did I love it. I adore John Green and David Levithan. WGWG is hilarious and sad and adorable and strange and that makes it so much awesome that I don't even know. I really need to reread it, if only because it's so awesome. I wish I could rec it more, but it's got some stuff in it that would offend some of my patrons (sadly), but that's okay. Because I just make all my friends read it. I hope they do more books together.
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WOW - just finished this amazing book by two authors whose work I especially admire. I was nervous starting it because their previous solo work has been SO good. Could their success really continue in a collaboration? Yes, it absolutely can.Two teen guys named Will Grayson meet under extraordinary circumstances. The first rarely has meaningful relationships because of his two rules for life: 1) shut up, and 2) don't care too much. These rules have served him well so far, but it's when he breaks his own rules that he (albeit, painfully) grows as a person and as a friend. His best friend from childhood--talented, boisterous, bigger-than-life, very gay--Tiny Cooper helps Will in this process, as does Jane, the girl who Will wants, and doesn't want, to date.The other Will Grayson, is even harder. Suffering from clinical depression and generally hating life and everyone around him, the only relationship in his life which means anything to him is with Isaac, the boy of his dreams he knows only through the internet. With Isaac, he can unveil the real Will, the one who doesn't want to hate or hurt.This story is ultimately about love - in friendship, in fights, in new beginnings. And it is SO smart. From Tiny Cooper's musical: "Love is a miracle, everywhere, every time." This was one of the rare books that made me laugh and cry. It was beautifully done.
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I am a big John Green fan; I loved Paper Towns and An Abundance of Katherines and I have Looking for Alaska sitting on my shelf waiting to be read. So when I saw a new book by John Green I couldn't wait to read it. This was a wonderful book with wonderful characters.The book switches between two different viewpoints; each viewpoint is from a different Will Grayson. The first Will Grayson is best friends with a huge gay teen named Tiny. Will kind of lives in Tiny's shadow. Tiny is preparing a glorious musical for high school that he wants Will's help with; Will is struggling with his relationship with Tiny as well as with how he feels about a cute girl named Jane. Tiny is trying to force Jane and Will into dating. Then there is the Other Will Grayson, who we will call OWG, who is having an online relationship with a teenage guy; they finally decided to meet in person. OWG is also dealing with his best friend who is a girl but wants to be more than that and with ongoing clinical depression. Things culminate into craziness when Will Grayson enters a porn shop out of boredom and bumps into OWG, who is looking for his online boyfriend. The reader is left on the edge of the seat wondering what will happen with Will Grayson; will him and Tiny stay friends, will he hook up with Jane, will the musical go on? What will happen to OWG when he tries to hook up with his online crush? Okay I am not sure if the above clarifies things, but remember this is a John Green book...so despite (or maybe because of) all the weird relationship stuff going on this is a really great book. You have a lot of wonderfully realistic characters dealing with a lot of issues. Green and Levithan do an excellent job capturing the intricacies of all of the teenage angst that these characters are going through. The characters are wonderfully quirky and easy to sympathize with and love. I have never read anything by Levithan before, and I am assuming he wrote what I am calling the OWG parts of the book (since that Will Grayson was introduced second). He does a great job capturing the troubled moments of that character as well and after reading this book I really want to read more from Levithan.I was also really impressed with how the Will Graysons' parents were portrayed; the parents are understanding people who are trying to do the best that they can as their sons struggle through high school and adolescence. I think most parents really do try to do the best that they can for their kids, (despite what a lot of YA literature portrays) so it was nice to see this...it leaves you feeling good.The character of Tiny bears mentioning because he is central to so much of the book. Tiny is large and gay and proud of it; he portrays a sense of positivity that is prevalent throughout the whole book...and in a way it is really him that drives the story. You have to love Tiny; his confidence in himself, the way he tries to exude happiness, his melodrama, and his utter belief in love.The writing of this book was high quality and super easy to read. It was incredibly engaging and I found myself reading the whole book in a day, unable to put it down for longer than a few hours at a time. There is something magical about the story and the way it is written; even if there isn't actually and fantasy here.I know this book has created some controversy as to whether or not it is age appropriate. I agree that it is probably best suited for mid to older teens. There is a ton of swearing, lots of talk about sex, and loads of gay sexual references. All of this was fairly pertinent to the story, so I don't think it was frivolous. At heart this is more a book about friendship, about love, and about accepting yourself and others for who they are.Overall a wonderful read. It leaves the reader feeling positive and upbeat. The book addresses issues about self-confidence, belonging, GLBT rights, accepting people for who they are, love, and happiness. This book just cements John Green more firmly in my mind as a must read author. It adds David Levithan to my list of authors I want to read more from. I have had Levithan's Boy Meets Boy on my "to read" list for a while now and this book makes me bump that up further on the list.
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Green and Leviathan write convincingly from the voice of each titular Will Grayson. The high-school story is both funny and on a search for emotional truth. Green manages to make his manic pixie dream girl (Tiny) flawed from the beginning. I really wish The Maybe Dead Cats were real. And, knowing The Nerdfighters, they will be shortly.
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