Will Grayon, Will Grayson, is the story of two teenagers both named Will Grayson and the long list of coincidences that ends with their random meeting in an adult video store (where neither of them are actually shopping). in the text version, the two Wills are distinguished in several ways: The first Will the one written by John Green and narrated by Nick Podehl chimes in for the odd-numbered chapters and gets his name capitalized, while the second, written by David Levithan and read by MacLeod Andrews, takes over the even-numbered chapters and goes by the more idiosyncratic will grayson (all lowercase). Since both characters are written in first person, it’s up to Podehl and Andrews to make the distinction clear in the audio version, and they do it well: Podehl’s Will is a teen who’s made a point of not getting too involved with anything or anyone, and the narrator balances the guarded tones of Will’s speaking voice with the less-controlled run of his thoughts, while Andrews gives his will a fast-paced, sarcastic tone that matches the character’s typical teenage cynicism.
While the story builds to the chance meeting between the Wills, the narrators take on a lineup of secondary characters: parents, girlfriends, boyfriends, and one large boy named Tiny Cooper who ties them all together. Podehl has more to work with in his chapters, bringing Will, Tiny, and their friends to life; much of Andrews’ time is spent reading online chats and back and forth dialogue that will prefaces with “me:” and “her:” or “him:” so he has fewer opportunities to develop those voices. But both narrators infuse their readings with the emotions, attitudes, and sentiments that will be familiar to anyone who knows (or was) a teenager. Blythe Copeland
One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, two teens—both named Will Grayson—are about to cross paths. As their worlds collide and intertwine, the Will Graysons find their lives going in new and unexpected directions, building toward romantic turns-of-heart and the epic production of history’s most fabulous high school musical.
Hilarious, poignant, and deeply insightful, John Green and David Levithan’s collaborative novel is brimming with a double helping of the heart and humor that have won both them legions of faithful fans.
©2010 John Green (P)2010 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
Friendship is beautiful.
Tiny Cooper. Obviously. He was the character around which everyone and everything revolved. He tied it all together. He was the best.
I wept when Will Grayson #1 mended his friendship with Tiny. It was a pivotal moment. What's nice is the book teaches that boys/men/males can be in touch with their feelings, but it's also about how difficult it is to do that, especially as an adolescent.
The audiobook is about a musical and has singing. The two narrators were SUPERB. And they sang. And I loved them. A++
Very cute story, insightful as always. I have read all of John Green's books now and his partnership with David Levithan really showcases their talents! I felt the Nick and Norah of Levithan and the Alaska of Green. Very good mix and the narrators were great, a little emo on 2nd Will Grayson's side, but still entertaining. Tiny Cooper is like the gay BFF you always wanted mixed with the whole drama club and the tony awards sprinkled on top! Very fun character.
Shades of Art
I tip my hat and bow to authors John Green, and David Levithanl. They both joined together to created a wonderful story about two guys with the same name Will Grayson and Will Grayson, a.k.a. OWG.
They got it right! They created characters that carried you along side them when they were going through their ups, and downs, when they were being betrayed, or having special tender moments while with friends or family, they made you say awe…!
Tiny was one of my favorite characters along with Will Grayson’s mother. She reminded me of what I would do if my son was to bring home a date, whether male or female. I would try to make everything perfect. My son would probably act just like Will Grayson, a little... embarrassed.
I love the fact that the authors chose to make Will Grayson, not Will Grayson a.k.a. OWG, Bi-Polar and he must take medication in order to feel. Most people think they understand depression, but they don't, not his kind of depression. However the authors kind of hit the nail on the hand when Will Grayson explains his thoughts on the subject of depression. I loved it, because it's real. Yes, of course we all get depressed, while never really understanding the magnitude of someone who is Bi-polar depression which is like teetering between death and hell.
Tiny, on the other hand, is loud and gay, he is a wonderful character. I love the fact that he knows who he is. Not only is there no closet big enough for him one would have to put locks and bolts on the other side to try to keep him in. I cheered him on as he perseverance with his show, which was basically about him and his pain.
The narrators, MacLeod Andrews and Nick Podehl were perfect and they couldn’t had pick a better set to tell the story. I am not a singer, can’t sing a lick, but the unexpected singing was fantastic and an added perk, if I say so myself. Bravo!
I would like to recommend this story to anyone who can listen, and want to listen to a well written, and vocally entertaining story. Pick this one you can’t go wrong. It’s all about relationships and how their friend and families all plays a part in their journey in life and how their choices affect those around them emotional whether good or bad, the outcome is always a lesson, one which we had to learn in order to grow into the Will Graysons of the world.
I hope this was helpful in your search of finding a good story.
*This review is by a 30-something female, from whom High School feels a long way away*
I like that this book exists. I hope it helps people to understand compassion, acceptance, tolerance, depression, 'love', 'like', and all the other good stuff that goes along with life (especially during those late teens). But for me, and maybe others like me, the revelations in this book are not so much ground breaking, but more like a reminder of what life was like back when a high school relationship was the totality of your world (you know, before bills, mortgages, bosses, and parenting comes into the picture).
This story is sweet in a lot of ways, and the characters are very likable. Having suffered from depression in the past (and when I was a teenager) I liked Will Grayson 2's perspective on Mental Health Days and his general frustrations with people who see "depression" as a adjective and not the all-encompassing thing that it is. Depression is a life and death battle that people do not "get over" but survive.
That said, I found myself to be a bit too old (and maybe too happy with my life these days) to get a lot out of this, aside from a fairly enjoyable way to spend 7 hours.
I'd recommend this for teens, which is the intended audience after all, but for those adult readers who enjoy a good teen fiction, it's not in the same league as Hunger Games, Harry Potter, or even Divergent, and you could do without adding this one to your collection.
I should probably rate this 4 star because it is not the fault of the author that I probably was not the intended audience. It was a good story and perfect for a young adult. It was a litte sophmoric for my own taste. Narrator performance was excellent.
I am a clay sculptor and an art instructor at a community college. I mostly listen to audiobooks while I work in my home studio.
This book is not my typical fare; I don't read a lot of YA novels set in the real world. The story was funny and strange and a little uncomfortable at times. The characters were a bit angst, but, YA, right?
I hesitate to say that I liked the book, since at times I cringed at the behavior of the characters, but I liked the journey the author took us on with those characters. The story was interesting and I'm glad I read it. I would recommend it, but I probably won't re-read it.
While the content of this story is not for everyone, this book has great characters (Tiny Cooper), a compelling plot (two Wills), lots of humor (and cussing), and, most importantly, the two narrators are tremendous in bringing the two Wills to life. The audio won some award though I can't remember now what it was.
I listened to this book as a requirement for a Young Adult Literature grad class and was thoroughly delighted to discover how good the book was. I think mature young people would especially like this book, but it's also a good listen for open-minded adults. MacLeod Andrews also narrates The Lock Artist, which I really liked as well.
Goodreads reviewer and blogger... also dentist and wife/mom when I get the time!
I loved listening to "Will Grayson, Will Grayson". The narrators were perfection, managing to sound kind of age appropriate and also doing the inflections, the feels, to a "T". A fabulous listen, audio lovers. A must buy.
In terms of the story, I started off liking John Green's Will Grayson more. I haven't read any John Green before, so I found his MC to be really enjoyable. You know, the kind of nerdy, quiet, emo guy that I have a huge soft spot for. But I loved how John Green wrote Tiny Cooper most of all. Some of the lines that John Green came up with... just amazingly quotable, witty, hilariousness.
I actually began the book kind of hating Levithan's Will Grayson. I found him to be contemptuous, and I took a bit of personal offense at how much of a dick he was towards his mom. I struggled to like him at all for the first 25% or so. However, as the book progressed, I found that Levithan's character just completely sucker-punched me with PAIN and emotion. Wow, he just nailed it, honestly. Levithan's Will Grayson ended up being much more memorable for me. Excellently done.
I liked how the two Will Grayson's ended up meeting and how the two stories twisted together. I wasn't crazy about the ending, but the book overall was really charming. I'll be reading more from these authors in the future.
This was an amazing book with such a feel good story. Two Will Graysons tell their stories and their lives cross. Even though they do not interact very much throughout the story, they make an impact on each other through their friends. The subject matter: homosexuality and depression and love and need. It was so beautifully and amazingly done that I laughed, cried, and had so many feels.
Here's the thing that I've learned from reading John Green's books: he deals with tough subject matter but at the end the reader is left feeling hopeful. He doesn't try to magically fix everything and want to make everyone feel so perfectly happy, but he does let us know that the characters have come to some sort of epiphany and growth that things can seem okay even if everything has fallen apart. And to me that's realistic, that's real life, and I love the feeling I get when I read the last words of his stories.
I recommend this to all young adults and up.
Where do I start with this one? Will Grayson, Will Grayson is a lot of things: funny, sad, heartbreaking, true, romantic, sweet, loud, and so much more. Let me start by saying I had no idea what the story was about. That’s right, I went into the book without knowing anything about it. It’s gotten fantastic reviews, and I just finished something by David Levithan that I really liked, so I figured that was good enough for me.
So the bad thing is, when I started, I didn’t realize it was told from two different point of views. And I also didn’t realize that it was narrated by two different people, so when the second chapter started, I thought “Wow, Will sure did change all of the sudden. And why does the narrator’s voice sound so different?” (Yeah, I’m not so swift.) So, after finally reading the book description, I realized what was going on and could actually enjoy the story. And boy did I.
I liked the two Will Graysons as characters, though I preferred WG#1. He was kinder than WG#2, who had a bad attitude and was especially vicious to his mother for no clear reason. WG#1′s bestie, Tiny Cooper, was something, he was practically the star of the book. He was big, loud and proud. He was self-centered and completely unapologetic about it.
"Tiny is talking about his blinding light spiritual awakening in a way that, nothing against Tiny, kind of implies that maybe Tiny has not fully internalized the idea that the earth does not spin around the axis of Tiny Cooper."
He was hard to like at first, but he eventually grew on me. All of the other characters were unique and interesting. No one-dimensional people here. They all had their own flaws and personality traits that made them so believable. Nobody was perfect or flawless or always said and did the right thing. The dialogue was full of cussing, and some of it felt unnecessary, but otherwise, I liked the way the kids talked to each other. They were real and (most of the time) honest. The story was full of one-liners and sarcasm that made me happy. There were several occasions where I laughed out loud and even once or twice I had to replay something I had missed because I was laughing too loud to hear it.
The plot was interesting; it focused mostly on the Wills (and Tiny), but also their friends, school, partying, and the choices they made in all of those areas. It really flew by, although there were maybe one or two spots I thought could have been whittled down for a more streamlined story. There was also a bit at the end I didn’t feel added anything to the story or the characters. It was supposed to be a big learning moment for Tiny, but I didn’t get it. It just seemed silly and pointless to me.
The narrators were amazing. They sounded similar, but once you know there are two different Wills (duh, Andrea), they were easy to tell apart and the two voices make it easy to know which Will was speaking in that chapter. They became the Wills so perfectly and completely, I can’t imagine anyone else playing those parts.
One of the plot lines involved Tiny and the musical he created. Throughout the novel, and at the end, songs were performed by the students. The narrators did such a fabulous job of bringing those songs to life, I can’t imagine reading the novel and not knowing how the songs sound “in real life.”
Funny and touching, this is a one-of-a-kind gem. I highly recommend the audio version, you would be missing out on a lot if you skipped it.
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