Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Review: Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares
Rachel Cohn & David Levithan
October 26th, 2010
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
260 pages
Reviewed: Hardcover from library
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“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”

So begins the latest whirlwind romance from the bestselling authors ofNick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?

Rachel Cohn and David Levithan have written a love story that will have readers perusing bookstore shelves, looking and longing for a love (and a red notebook) of their own.

My Review

I was in need of another winter book, and I saw this one on some list. First thought: this sounds like a little kids' book. I passed it by, but when it popped up again, I was curious. After reading the description, I put it down on my to-get-at-the-library list, and here I am now. (It's not a little kids' book, by the way. It's by David Levithan.)

Dash and Lily's story was told in such a cool way. Alternating between their two points of view, we got to see how both of them experienced the holidays. Lily loved to be surrounded by family, while Dash preferred to be alone. They both ended up being alone for Christmas, though, until they met through Lily's red Moleskine notebook. When Dash found it in his favorite bookstore, the dares began. I love the intrigue that writing to a complete stranger in a notebook would bring. I would totally do it. If you ever find a notebook on a bookstore shelf, it might just be from me...

The setting of this book was kind of cliche. I have nothing against New York, I just feel like there are a lot of books set there, is all. If I knew more about New York, maybe I would've been able to relate with it better. Picture things in my head. But I didn't really get that. It didn't take away from the story at all, but it didn't add much to it either. I could see this story being set somewhere more unique and hardly changing at all.

 I liked the message that was sent through that little red journal. To quote Mark Strand: "We are reading the story of our lives, as though we were in it, as though we had written it." That sums it up perfectly, I think. Dash and Lily were telling each other tales of their lives, and meanwhile, they were setting up their future. It also had a theme of trying to be yourself. When Lily first met Dash, she was...well, not in an ideal state. She was all embarrassed because she didn't want to meet him like that, but Dash didn't care. He knew he was going to like her anyway, and that was that.

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares was a cute love story. I would recommend it if you ever need a quick holiday read. I definitely enjoyed it, and Rachel & David's other co-written books are going on my TBR list for sure.

4 stars

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