Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
"a kiss from a pretend girlfriend that leads to a crazy and endearing bond"
All night out on the streets of New York, listening to music and going to clubs. This is the type of freedom that most teenagers dream of but very few get to experience. Rachel Cohn and David Levithan's story of a wild night out in New York begins when Norah pretends to be Nick's five minute girlfriend in a club, never knowing the kiss they share will lead to a crazy, yet endearing bond. The two seem like an unlikely pair at first. Nick is a straight bass guitarist in a queercore band who is still infatuated with his ex-girlfriend, and Norah is a confused wreck who thinks of herself as "frigid". As the plot unfolds, however, the reader can feel the spark that is igniting.
Cohn and Levithan's style is extremely casual. I would not recommend this book to people who are offended by foul language or content. It's no secret that the minds of teenagers aren't exactly pure, and the characters' thoughts are often scattered, like teenage thinking sometimes is. I've had many instances when I've thought also, "Did I just say that aloud?"
Nick and Norah are no ordinary teenagers. They have completely unique personalities that separate them from just any other boy or girl. Nick is a penniless guitartist in a band with no drummer and Norah's dad is a big name in the music industry. She is sarcastic but also down-to-earth. It is intriguing to watch two very different characters form a bond in which honesty plays a huge role. Nick explains, "I am liking that I can throw any kind of sentence at her without worrying it's too out there."
Jumping into the story was an excellent way to experience an all night out in New York without actually having been there myself. The possibility of Nick falling out of love with the brutal Tris and into love with the adventurous Norah was truly fascinating. I enjoyed looking inside the confused and naive minds of two teenagers and watching as they sort out their problems through each other. Though it can use harsh language to achieve its point, the developing young love between the leading characters allows for an overall kindhearted tale.