Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

admin    June 14, 2013

One of our staff’s absolute favorite new books.  Miss Amanda and Miss Rebekah are both raving about this one.  Check out our reviews below, and then put it on hold:

I was reading this slowly, a page or two a day because I already loved it on page one and I knew I would fly through if I read more. And I did.
I loved the writing, simple, lyrical and very honest. Of course Dante and Aristotle are amazing characters that are wonderfully deep and incredibly vulnerable. I like that even though it’s first person perspective from Ari we still see so much of Dante and his own struggles to grow and change. A very powerful story told in quiet and moving moments. Love it.

pg. 1 I was fifteen.
I was bored.
I was miserable
As far as I was concerned, the sun could have melted the blue right off the sky. Then the sky could be as miserable as I was.

pg. 17 I had a rule that it was better to be bored by yourself than to be bored with someone else. I pretty much lived by that rule. Maybe that’s why I didn’t have any friends.

pg 88. The quiet over the phone was strange. “Do you think it will always be this way?”
“What?”
“I mean, when do we start feeling like the world belongs to us?”
I wanted to tell him that the world would never belong to us. “I don’t know,” I said. “Tomorrow.”

pg. 293 Storms always made me feel so small.
Even thought summers were mostly made of sun and heat, summer for me were about the storms that came and went. And left me feeling alone.
Did all boys feel alone?
That summer sun was not meant for boys like me. Boys like me belong to the rain.

~ Amanda

This is such a special book. It’s amazing to me that this story about two Mexican American boys growing up in the 1980s manages to be so universal.

These characters are real and honest and sweet and hopeful…while still staying true to teenage boys. Are real boys this introspective? I’m not sure, but I don’t know that I care. It works here. Although this is told from Ari’s point of view, it’s just as much Dante’s story.

I love their journey, I love their growth, and I love how they love each other. Simply fantastic.

~ Rebekah