Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan.
Once in awhile a teen books hits it completely out of the ballpark, capturing vividly and exactly what being a teen feels like. This is one of those books. Nick is a straight musician in a queercore band. Norah is a very straight-laced daughter of a famous record producer. When Nick finds himself unable to flee from his exgirlfriend, he asks Norah to be his five minute girlfriend and they start kissing. But the connection is made and the five minutes turn into a whole night together. The night is not perfect as their connection together is tested, ruined, lost and rediscovered.
The book perfectly captures the angst, pride, hubris, and pain of being a teen and looking for the right person to form a connection with. Though the book is set in the punk rock, clubbing world, all teens will see themselves in this pair. All teens will hear themselves in their speech, recognize the ache between two people, and find themselves caught in the net of Nick and Norah.
Rarely does a book ring so true with dialogue so right on and sparkling. Witty one moment and fumbling the next. One caveat is that there is strong language and very heavy petting in this book. If you are uncomfortable with that in a school library, don’t order this one. If you are working in a public library, this is a must-have book that will have plenty of appreciative teen fans. Here’s hoping that this duo continues to write books together, though they do well apart too. But there is a certain chemistry to their joint writing that is thrilling to read.