Boy Meets Boy

Paperback | May 10, 2005

byDavid Levithan

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This is the story of Paul, a sophomore at a high school like no other: The cheerleaders ride Harleys, the homecoming queen used to be a guy named Daryl (she now prefers Infinite Darlene and is also the star quarterback), and the gay-straight alliance was formed to help the straight kids learn how to dance.

When Paul meets Noah, he thinks he’s found the one his heart is made for. Until he blows it. The school bookie says the odds are 12-to-1 against him getting Noah back, but Paul’s not giving up without playing his love really loud. His best friend Joni might be drifting away, his other best friend Tony might be dealing with ultra-religious parents, and his ex-boyfriend Kyle might not be going away anytime soon, but sometimes everything needs to fall apart before it can really fit together right.

This is a happy-meaningful romantic comedy about finding love, losing love, and doing what it takes to get love back in a crazy-wonderful world.

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From the Publisher

This is the story of Paul, a sophomore at a high school like no other: The cheerleaders ride Harleys, the homecoming queen used to be a guy named Daryl (she now prefers Infinite Darlene and is also the star quarterback), and the gay-straight alliance was formed to help the straight kids learn how to dance. When Paul meets Noah, he thin...

From the Jacket

“In its blithe acceptance and celebration of human differences, this is arguably the most important gay novel since Annie on My Mind and seems to represent a revolution in the publishing of gay-themed books for adolescents.”—Booklist, Starred“In a genre filled with darkness, torment, and anxiety, this is a shiningly affirmative and hop...

David Levithan is a children’s book editor in New York City.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:224 pages, 8.22 × 5.51 × 0.51 inPublished:May 10, 2005Publisher:Random House Children's BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0375832998

ISBN - 13:9780375832994

Appropriate for ages: 13 - 17


Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really cute It wasn't as good as "two boys kissing' But it was really cute. A quick read, and I got suupper attached to the characters. I didn't want to say goodbye.
Date published: 2016-02-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A very refreshing take on an LGBTQ+ oriented story. Boy Meets Boy is unlike any other LGBTQ+ story I have read so far. Although there were a lot of conflicts throughout the novel, it felt almost utopian if that makes any sense. This story revolves around multiple characters with varying identities and it was quite refreshing to learn about them and their everyday teenaged issues. Just by reading the first chapter alone, I knew I was going to love this story purely based on the beautiful way it was written. The writing style is very poetic and I found myself finding beautiful quotes on every page. Right away it is clear that this novel would be unlike many others in the LGBTQ+ genre. For one, everything and everyone is accepted. As stated earlier, everything feels very utopian. I've never seen a high school so accepting of every student, never mind an entire city/town. Rather than succumbing to the stereotypical conflicts found in most LGBTQ+ stories, Boy Meets Boy makes the characters sexuality feel if it just happens to be just another detail of the character's lives. The conflicts feel like they could belong to any gender/sexuality/race which makes this story relatable to anyone who chooses to read it. I loved the diversity of characters throughout this novel. Paul is an openly gay teenager who is accepted and loved by his family and friends, as a majority of the characters are. Paul is surrounded by a slew of diverse friends including Joni, his childhood best friend and Tony, a new addition to their group. Tony is one of the few characters that has to deal with parents who aren't very accepting of his sexuality. Infinite Darlene is a drag queen who also happens to be both homecoming queen and the star quarterback. Kyle is Paul's ex-boyfriend who is still a little confused about his sexuality. Then there is Noah, a new kid in school that Paul is immediately attracted to the second they meet. Although each of these characters are completely different from one another, they all fit together perfectly and compliment one another. Boy Meets Boy is a story that stands out from the rest. At times, things may seem a little to perfect, but for the most part it was fantastic to see such an optimal take on the LGBTQ community. I hope one day soon this "utopian" feeling can become an everyday reality. Boy Meets Boy does a great job in showing the world that it is possible for everyone to get along and live together peacefully.
Date published: 2015-11-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A cute story Paul, our main character, meets Noah one evening (in a bookstore!) and thus begins your average tale of high school love. Of course, Kyle, Paul’s ex, comes back in the picture and Paul screws up, big time. Now it’s up to Paul to fix the pieces of his life. In short, Boy Meets Boy is your average rom-com. With the exception that Paul lives in this somewhat-utopian town where everyone accepts each other for who they are. Although that’s certainly not the case in real life. This utopian-style town annoys most people but I actually found it refreshing and fun to read. Paul has many friends who certainly wouldn’t be accepted by most people today and to read a story where they were accepted was just outstanding. I loved all the side characters and their development, and I loved reading about all the different friendships and relationship. The friendship elements are also really highlighted throughout the book and I loved seeing all the support and help that Paul gets throughout the novel. The romance in this novel was also just adorable and you can’t help but root for Paul-Noah when you read Boy Meets Boy. From the first time they met to the end of the book, I was cheering them on. Paul is a teenage boy just looking to have fun and meet the right guy while Noah tries to appreciate life and enjoy his art. I just loved seeing their chemistry and seeing them bond over common interests. Boy Meets Boy is tragically short so I don’t to go on and on about the same points. Overall, Boy Meets Boy is a cute LGBT book that I highly recommend for fans of contemporaries or for people just looking for a cute story.
Date published: 2015-02-08
Rated out of 5 by from Homophobic-free world! I almost put this book down because (learning the hard way) I cannot stand reading in present-tense. I struggled for quite a few chapters before I got used to it. At first it did not seem worth pushing through, but I am glad that I stuck by it. Once the drama builds up, it is hard not to get caught up in it and watch how the events unfold. Now for the setting: The idea of a homophobic-free world was appealing and the reason I picked it up in the first place (originally because I was getting bored of YA novels centered on "coming out" and struggling with reactions). It has a nice concept behind it, but it seems like too far-away of a place for me to believe. The little stretch is manageable and was still fun to observe ...just not convincing. I got even more detached when the story makes countless references that I think my parents would understand before I do. The vintage style would have worked better if one character was attracted to it – not everybody. For example, I don’t think a VCR shop would survive in a modern setting - especially when it is run by someone who does not organize the videos and has poor customer service. I don’t understand how this could be the hot-spot where the main character crosses multiple classmates. What I did like were the characters and their individual quirks. They took a while to grow on me, but once they did, they felt like people you could actually meet. This is what made the story real for me. How everyone interacts felt like authentic high school scenes; at times stressful but also had that juicy gossip that everyone secretly indulges in. So this book was entertaining and it also had its flaws. I think I could recommend this book but only after setting out a few warnings ahead of time.
Date published: 2012-11-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful love story If you want a truly wonderful romance I wouldn't look any further than this. A lot of things in this book are unconventional, but at it's core it is an absolutely beautiful romance. I wanted things to work out for Paul and Noah so badly, it was torture watching then encounter all the obstacles that came their way. But what I think made the romance in Boy Meet Boy really stand out is that it wasn't about "being gay". It was just about two people falling in love. I am sucker for a book with really good characters and this book was full of them. I became so attached with almost everyone. Especially Paul and Infinite Darlene. I loved Paul. I wish more people were like him. He genuinely wanted to do the right thing and be there for all his friends. Even when those two things conflicted with one another. Infinite Darlene, loud and crazy though she may have been, was very much the same. Though Paul describes her as self absorbed, he explains that her sense of self was so big it also included her friends, and therefore by being self absorbed, she was also obsessed with her friends well being. I love that. All these fantastic elements, were enhanced by David Levithan's amazing, crystal clear narrative voice. It's a little quirky and off beat but incredibly descriptive and vivid. Totally unique. It made the story move along smoothly and it did so without any fluff or unnecessary extras. I couldn't imagine this story being told any other way. This is now one of my all time favourite books and I could see myself re-reading it a thousand times and not being sick of it. It's just that good. Final recommendation: A must read for all those who enjoy contemporary romance. It doesn't get much better than this.
Date published: 2012-07-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Big Calm A brilliant book about love in all its forms. Join Paul on his adventure to claim Noah's heart, understand his best friend Joni's heart when she changes for the worse, help his other best friend Tony break free from rules of religion and parents, guide a confussed ex-boyfriend Kyle through grief and to new love and beat Rip who makes all the odds. I really recomend this book for any readers who need to be calmed down a little or need a better understanding of those around them.
Date published: 2008-04-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Refreshing & witty Its a great read. David Levithan has great talent.
Date published: 2008-01-27

Extra Content

Read from the Book

Now away we go9 p.m. on a November Saturday. Joni, Tony, and I are out on the town. Tony is from the next town over and he needs to get out. His parents are extremely religious. It doesn't even matter which religion--they're all the same at a certain point, and few of them want a gay boy cruising around with his friends on a Saturday night. So every week Tony feeds us bible stories, then on Saturday we show up at his doorstep well versed in parables and earnestness, dazzling his parents with our blinding purity. They slip him a twenty and tell him to enjoy our study group. We go spend the money on romantic comedies, dimestore toys, and diner jukeboxes. Our happiness is the closest we'll ever come to a generous God, so we figure Tony's parents would understand, if only they weren't set on misunderstanding so many things.Tony has to be home by midnight, so we are on a Cinderella mission. With this in mind, we keep our eye on the ball.There isn't really a gay scene or a straight scene in our town. They got all mixed up a while back, which I think is for the best. Back when I was in second grade, the older gay kids who didn't flee to the city for entertainment would have to make their own fun. Now it's all good. Most of the straight guys try to sneak into the Queer Beer bar. Boys who love boys flirt with girls who love girls. And whether your heart is strictly ballroom or bluegrass punk, the dance floors are open to whatever you have to offer.This is my town. I've lived here all my life.Tonight, our Gaystafarian bud Zeke is gigging at the local chain bookstore. Joni has a driver's license from the state where her grandmother lives, so she drives us around in the family sedan. We roll down the windows and crank the radio--we like the idea of our music spilling out over the whole neighborhood, becoming part of the air. Tony has a desperate look tonight, so we let him control the dial. He switches to a Mope Folk station, and we ask him what's going on."I can't say," he tells us, and we know what he means. That nameless empty.We try to cheer him up by treating him to a blue Slurp-Slurp at the local 24-7. We each take sips, to see whose tongue can get the bluest. Once Tony's sticking his tongue out with the rest of us, we know he's going to be okay.Zeke's already jamming by the time we get to the highway bookstore. He's put his stage in the European History section, and every now and then he'll throw names like Hadrian and Copernicus into his mojo rap. The place is crowded. A little girl in the children's section puts the Velveteen Rabbit on her shoulders for a better view. Her moms are standing behind her, holding hands and nodding to Zeke's tune. The Gaystafarian crowd has planted itself in the Gardening section, while the three straight members of the guys' lacrosse team are ogling a bookstore clerk from Literature. She doesn't seem to mind. Her glasses are the color of licorice.I move through the crowd with ease, sharing nods and smiling hellos. I love this scene, this floating reality. I am a solo flier looking out over the land of Boyfriends and Girlfriends. I am three notes in the middle of a song.Joni grabs me and Tony, pulling us into Self-Help. There are a few monkish types already there, some of them trying to ignore the music and learn the Thirteen Ways to Be an Effective Person. I know Joni's brought us here because sometimes you just have to dance like a madman in the Self-Help section of your local bookstore. So we dance. Tony hesitates--he isn't much of a dancer. But as I've told him a million times, when it comes to true dancing, it doesn't matter what you look like--it's all about the joy you feel.Zeke's jive is infectious. People are crooning and swooning into one another. You can see the books on the shelves in kaleidoscope form--spinning rows of colors, the passing blur of words.I sway. I sing. I elevate. My friends are by my side, and Zeke is working the Huguenots into his melody. I spin around and knock a few books off the shelves. When the song is through, I bend to pick them up.I grasp on the ground and come face to face with a cool pair of sneakers."This yours?" a voice above the sneakers asks.I look up. And there he is.His hair points in ten different directions. His eyes are a little close together, but man, are they green. There's a little birthmark on his neck, the shape of a comma.I think he's wonderful.He's holding a book out to me. Migraines Are Only in Your Mind.I am aware of my breathing. I am aware of my heartbeat. I am aware that my shirt is half untucked. I take the book from him and say thanks. I put it back on the shelf. There's no way that Self-Help can help me now."Do you know Zeke?" I ask, nodding to the stand."No," the boy answers. "I just came for a book.""I'm Paul.""I'm Noah."He shakes my hand. I am touching his hand.I can feel Joni and Tony keeping their curious distance."Do you know Zeke?" Noah asks. "His tunes are magnificent."I roll the word in my head--magnificent. It's like a gift to hear."Yeah, we go to school together," I say casually."The high school?""That's the one." I'm looking down. He has perfect hands."I go there, too.""You do?" I can't believe I've never seen him before. If I'd seen him before, it would have damn well registered."Two weeks now. Are you a senior?"I look down at my Keds. "I'm a sophomore.""Cool."Now I fear he's humoring me. There's nothing cool about being a sophomore. Even a new kid would know that.From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

The Horn Book, March 26, 2013:"Using a diverse cast of queer characters, David Levithan’s semi-utopian Boy Meets Boy...affirm[s] that there is a whole rainbow of ways to be gay.""In its blithe acceptance and celebration of human differences, this is arguably the most important gay novel since Annie on My Mind and seems to represent a revolution in the publishing of gay-themed books for adolescents."—Booklist, starred review"In a genre filled with darkness, torment, and anxiety, this is a shiningly affirmative and hopeful book. —The Bulletin, starred review"Levithan's prophecy of a hate-free world in which everyone loves without persecution makes this a provocative and important read for all young adults, gay or straight."—School Library Journal, starred reviewFrom the Hardcover edition.