Note: This time of year is always very busy for me. Last year, I hadn't really started blogging yet, so I was able to keep myself above the craziness. This year, I am. My blog is slightly inactive due to the holiday craze. Hopefully will return to the regular posting after the new year. :)


Friday, January 20, 2012

Review - The Lover's Dictionary by David Levithan

The Lover's Dictionary by David Levithan

Amazon Link
Goodreads Link

Page Count: 211
Overall Rating: 4 Stars

basis, n. 

There has to be a moment at the beginning when you wonder whether you’re in love with the person or in love with the feeling of love itself. 

If the moment doesn’t pass, that’s it—you’re done. And if the momentdoes pass, it never goes that far. It stands in the distance, ready for whenever you want it back. Sometimes it’s even there when you thought you were searching for something else, like an escape route, or your lover’s face. 

You guys. This one was surprisingly good.

Lately, I've been trying to kind of branch out just a little bit. Not really leave everything behind, but, you know, try some things that are different. So I read this book, because it was a dictionary, and that's kind of the most different thing I could really read.

I wasn't really expecting to like it like I did. I'd read verse books before and not really liked them, because I couldn't get a feel for anything. It was too loose. So I didn't think I'd be able to get a feel for this one, either, because dictionary entries aren't really long, and it's a completely different format than I'm used to.

The thing about this one is that it's kind of ... odd. It can tell a story just like any other story. In your heart, you know what happened, even though there are still little gaps in between everything. Even though I think some of the things aren't in the right order, and it's told through this form, it's just as much of a story as any other book, really.


To be completely honest, no, I didn't really really connect with it on the same level as a normal book. But I connected with it a lot more than a prose book. When I've read some verse books in the past, I really kind of felt a bit cheated after finishing it. With this one, there was an air of something like sadness that I didn't spend so much time with the people, even though they weren't named or anything.

Another thing. The characters aren't ever named or really described in appearance, yet I can still picture them in my heads. Oddly enough, I picture them as celebrities which doesn't happen, and, no, I will not tell you which ones.

It's a good story with a lot of relatable quotes, even though I obviously haven't had half of the stuff that's in this book done to me. Books have a funny way of making you relate to things because they make you feel them, and this book does a really good job at it.

And even if it is a dictionary, it doesn't lack emotion. Have a look at the definition for livid below. (It's highlighted in red because it drops a few F-bombs and is a bit of a spoiler. Read at your own discretion.)

“livid, adj. 

Fuck You for cheating on me. Fuck you for reducing it to the word cheating. As if this were a card game, and you sneaked a look at my hand. Who came up with the term cheating, anyway? A cheater, I imagine. Someone who thought liar was too harsh. Someone who thought devastator was too emotional. The same person who thought, oops, he’d gotten caught with his hand in the cookie jar. Fuck you. This isn’t about slipping yourself an extra twenty dollars of Monopoly money. These are our lives. You went and broke our lives. You are so much worse than a cheater. You killed something. And you killed it when its back was turned.”

That is certainly not lacking in any emotion. So it's not like you can't connect with the characters emotionally, really.

It is an adult book, and does contain cursing, as you know above, and so on. If you aren't comfortable with that, then be wary, maybe. I do recommend it to you all, whether you have issues with connecting to  verse books or not. I liked it, and maybe you will too. 

Songs I listened to while reading:

Amazing Quote:

"Breathing, n
You had asthma as a child, had to carry around an inhaler. But when you grew older, it went away. You could run for miles and it was fine. Sometimes I worry that this is happening to me in reverse. The older I get, the more I lose my ability to breathe."


Katie (The Literary Files) said...

I absolutely adore both of the quotes you included in your review, you're right about them being able to bring out emotions even if you haven't gone through these experiences before. That is odd that the characters weren't name, but neat that you could still picture them in your head. I definitely want to check this book out now, sounds like an awesomely unique read, thanks Brielle! :)

We Heart YA said...

Love your review. It's very honest and thoughtful, and it kind of reflects the vague-but-emotional nature of the book. We've had our eye on this one for a while, but you've just convinced us all the way. Thanks!

Unknown said...
Guides, definitely. Nothing better than a new guide in your arms.

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