- Paperback: 368 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (April 1, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1442408936
- ISBN-13: 978-1442408937
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 625 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,447 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe Paperback – April 1, 2014
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This month's Book With Buzz: "The Lying Game" by Ruth Ware
From the instant New York Times bestselling author of blockbuster thrillers "In a Dark, Dark Wood" and "The Woman in Cabin 10" comes Ruth Ware’s chilling new novel, "The Lying Game." See more
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When Aristotle and Dante meet, in the summer of 1987, they are 15-year-olds existing in “the universe between boys and men.” The two are opposites in most ways: Dante is sure of his place in the world, while Ari feels he may never know who he is or what he wants. But both are thoughtful about their feelings and interactions with others, and this title is primarily focused on the back-and-forth in their relationship over the course of a year. Family issues take center stage, as well as issues of Mexican identity, but the heart of the novel is Dante’s openness about his homosexuality and Ari’s suppression of his. Sáenz (Sammy and Juliana in Hollywood, 2004) writes toward the end of the novel that “to be careful with people and words was a rare and beautiful thing.” And that’s exactly what Sáenz does—he treats his characters carefully, giving them space and time to find their place in the world, and to find each other. This moves at a slower pace than many YA novels, but patient readers, and those struggling with their own sexuality, may find it to be a thought-provoking read. Grades 9-12. --Ann Kelley --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
* "A tender, honest exploration of identity and sexuality, and a passionate reminder that love—whether romantic or familial—should be open, free, and without shame." (Publishers Weekly, starred review)
* "Authentic teen and Latino dialogue should make it a popular choice." (School Library Journal, starred review)
* "Meticulous pacing and finely nuanced characters underpin the author's gift for affecting prose that illuminates the struggles within relationships." (Kirkus Reviews, starred review)
"Sáenez writes toward the end of the novel that “to be careful with people and words was a rare and beautiful thing.” And that’s exactly what Sáenez does—he treats his characters carefully, giving them space and time to find their place in the world, and to find each other...those struggling with their own sexuality may find it to be a thought-provoking read." (Booklist)
"Sáenz has written the greater love story, for his is the story of loving one’s self, of love between parents and children, and of the love that builds communities, in addition to the deepening love between two friends." (VOYA)
"Ari’s first-person narrative—poetic, philosophical, honest—skillfully develops the relationship between the two boys from friendship to romance." (The Horn Book)
"Primarily a character- and relationship-driven novel, written with patient and lyrical prose that explores the boys’ emotional lives with butterfly-wing delicacy."--Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"Sáenz is a master at capturing the conversation of teens with each other and with the adults in their lives." (Library Media Connection, Recommended)
"This book took my breath away. What gorgeous writing, and what a story! I loved both these boys. And their parents! Don't we all wish we had parents like theirs? The ending - and the way it unfolded - was so satisfying. I could go on and on...suffice it to say I will be highly recommending it to one and all. I'm sure I'll reread it myself at some point. I hated having it end." (James Howe, Author of Addie on the Inside)
"I’m absolutely blown away. This is Saenz's best work by far...It’s a beautiful story, so beautifully told and so psychologically acute! Both Ari and Dante are simply great characters who will live on in my memory. Everything about the book is absolutely pitch perfect...It’s already my favorite book of the year!" (Michael Cart, Booklist columnist and YALSA past president)
“Benjamin Alire Saenz is a writer with a sidewinder punch. Spare sentences connect resonant moments, and then he knocks you down with emotional truth. The story of Ari and Dante’s friendship widens and twists like a river, revealing truths about how hard love is, how family supports us, and how painfully deep you have to go to uncover an authentic self.” (Judy Blundell, National Book Award-winning author of What I Saw and How I Lied)
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Top customer reviews
I liked it. A lot. I have no regrets in buying it. Ari was easy to empathize with and Dante was adorable (almost too good to be true at some parts). I was reminded of my teen years while reading this -- the angst, the confusion, the question of identity. I did somewhat see the end coming, and over all I'm satisfied with it although I thought the revelation of why Ari's brother was imprisoned was a bit cliche. But I'm able to forgive that. This is a YA book after all, and they tend to be chock full of cliches; in fact, as far as YA books are concerned, this one is rather low on them, so I don't have much room to complain.
I was put off by the grammatical errors (there were a bit more than I'm used to seeing in published works), and I admit I have a harder time overlooking them; however, the story itself was engaging enough to keep me from giving up on it and tossing it into my get-rid-of pile.
All in all, a pleasant read. 4/5 stars.
the thing about this book is that it’s beautiful and unique, it’s poetic but not too much, it's realstic and not too heavy or cliche. the book centers around the main character’s inner world which is very very rich, but not much is going on outside of his world. there are dramatic events but like, maybe 3 in all of the book. some people would find this boring but i like that. personally, as much as i enjoyed this book i felt very unsatisfied because there was so much more to explore that wasn’t explored, and i felt like the 300+ pages could have been maybe 150. when i finished it i was like, this is all? cause i loved it! and wanted more, but also the end wasn't very "end" for me? the author said on twitter he is working on a new book from dante's pov, and also maybe a sequel, which is AMAZING, so I do hope the fact I was unsatisfied is going to change when I read those books. but I still think that if there is a book in a series you need to kind of wrap things up in the end, and leave only a little mystery so the reader will be curious for the second book. this book just isn't "wrapped up" if you understand me (I'm not a native speaker, sorry). It is also pretty repetitive towards the end.
I wanted to be amazed and I wasn't, but at the same time I couldn't stop reading and fell in love with the characters? So I'm confused. I hope the other book(s) would be better.
this is the review i worte with spoilers just as i finished reading. you are totally welcome to come to my ask box and talk to me about this book!
The way sentences were written - pulling you into the moment and smacking you upside the head. I found myself reading with tears pouring down my face over a dead sparrow. WTF. Maybe it wasn't so much the bird, but a lot of Dante's love getting into my heart. Ari and Dante, two really good friends who find love at different speeds.
5.0 for desert stargazing in the bed of a classic truck.
This book just had so many great lines and I felt like it did really well with handling the complicated emotions that come with growing up and learning who you are. The fact that the characters were able to laugh even in the hardest times was something that I found real and lovely. Getting the book from Aristotle's point of view was a blessing too, because while Dante was often an open book, Ari struggled to show or even understand his own feelings about the world around him and the people he cared about.
All around Great!
Most recent customer reviews
And I just want to hang this book in my living room!
This book the definition of poignant!Read more