Short stories are the quickest way to turn me off from reading. They lack depth, characterization and a proper ending – it’s always some vague “we’ll see” that leaves me completely unsatisfied.
So as expected, David Levithan’s How They Met and Other Stories was an uneducated buy. As a professional reader, I should really learn how to at least read the back covers of books, but as Emma… Well that will never happen.
The book is a collection of short stories about couples meeting, with a twist. All the couples are either homosexual or lesbians. I didn’t know about this twist either and that is probably the reason I loved the book so much.
When you start reading the first story, and you have not read anything about the book, it reads as a guy with a crush. There is no obvious “omg I’m gay” element in the story – it is just like every other kind of story about a crush and that is amazing. I feel so many books that portray homosexual relationships focus the whole book about how the characters are not straight and how they struggle with that.
Not Levithan – he describes the characters exactly like they should be – normal teens in love with someone.
However, that does not mean there was love story between me and the book. The stories definitely got my interest, but I wish I would know more about the characters. Where do they come from? What happened to Miles? Thom? The Starbucks guy?
If I had my way, the whole book would have been the story of Miles. He is a professional dancer near New York City who falls in love with his dance teacher Graham. He comes out to his family by saying that Graham is his boyfriend, which is a lie. Through a twist of events, Graham is invited to a family gather and Miles have to figure out how to either get Graham to go with him or find someone else. I adored this story – I thought Miles was the sweetest guy (and watch out for the aaww cameo by his brother) and I really felt like I knew him. Except that I still have all these questions about Miles’ future and Graham and the whole family and the dance rehearsals and and and and… You get the picture.
This book is amazing for anyone who loves short stories (amazing as in, buy it right now please), and it’s even a good read for someone who doesn’t like them – if you can live with the frustration of not getting a conclusive answer to most of your questions.