Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Girl Meets Boy by various authors, ed. by Kelly Milner Halls

Girl Meets Boy
ed. by Kelly Milner Halls
Stories by:
Source:  Publisher

 What do guys and girls really think? Twelve of the most dynamic and engaging YA authors writing today team up for this one-of-a-kind collection of he said/she said stories he tells it from the guy's point of view, she tells it from the girl's. These are stories of love and heartbreak. There's the good-looking jock who falls for a dangerous girl, and the flipside, the toxic girl who never learned to be loved; the basketball star and the artistic (and shorter) boy she never knew she wanted; the gay boy looking for love online and the girl who could help make it happen. Each story in this unforgettable collection teaches us that relationships are complicated because there are two sides to every story.

My Thoughts: 

I was so excited when I first found out about Girl Meets Boy. The title immediately drew me in because it clearly was going to be about relationships. Collaborating authors telling stories from alternating perspectives. Another plus in my book. And yes, a cover that I really like. 

Each story was unique in its own way telling the stories of girls and boys as they build new relationships, reveal crushes, reveal secrets and allow others to see who they really are. Just as in life, not all of the characters are perfect. 

In the first story collection by Chris Crutcher and Kelly Milner Halls, we meet Johnny who wants to learn how to find a girlfriend who isn't so needy or insecure or need a boyfriend who takes care of her. So he approaches one of the toughest girls in school, Wanda Wickam. She appears to have it all together,  but he finds that she needs to be cared for just as much as all of the others. But he needs to learn how to start taking care of himself too.

One of my favorite stories is the collaboration by James Howe/Ellen Wittlinger "Want to Meet"/"Meeting for Real" - the characters of these stories come together because of the need for hope and the possibility of friendship. Alex isn't exactly who she says she is when she introduces herself to Max, but she wants him to be exactly who he says he is to help strengthen her belief in the goodness of people. It ironic that she must present herself as a lie, in order to truth in others. But I don't dislike her because of it. She is actually one of my favorite characters in this collection.

Another story that I liked was "Launchpad to Neptune" by Sara Ryan and Randy Powell. This story is told differently because both perspectives are intertwined to tell Stephanie and Gavin's story. They share a long history of friendship that changes after one rejected kiss. One moment of misunderstanding that isn't reconciled until several years later. This is when we meet Stephanie and Gavin. I love the opening lines to this story:

"The hardest decision the day I was going to meet Gavin: what to wear. 'Your prom dress of course sweetie,' said Dean. 'Shut up,' I said. Then I said the hell with it and wore what I always wear these days. It didn't matter." (pg. 171) 

This is so telling in how this story is going to play out and it made me want to read it quickly to see how it is going to affect the future relationship between the friends and if their friendship will even continue.

I connected with some of the stories more than the others, but they were all filled with characters that I would want to read about again. I want to know what the future holds for Kerry and Rafi from "Mouths of the Granges"/"Mars at Night" after they finally admit to truth of their relationship to their parents.

I also enjoyed Girl Meets Boy because it introduced me to a lot of new authors whose works I'd never read before.  I will be reading their writing in the future, that is a given. I'd recommend this book to anyone who likes reading stories told from alternating perspectives, and stories about realistic relationships between girls and boys.

I received Girl Meets Boy from the publisher and author Kelly Milner Halls in exchange for my honest review.

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