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.
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.
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.
A few must reads: Mr. Mercedes, Narrows Gate, Cop Town, Bomb Proof, Wayfaring Stranger, The Son (Nesbo), Dept Q series...
This is an extremely entertaining book, full of comic relief and romantic frustration. And it's extremely gay. It's funny and gay and larger than life because Will Grayson's best friend and the other Will Grayson's boyfriend is a 6.5", 300 lbs lineman on the football team, a drama queen, a ridiculously talented poet and playwright, hopeless, narcissistic romantiic named Tiny.
Now I am straight and readily admit there were times the gayness was was over the top. Thank heavens for the genius of both authors to have the straight Will Grayson react to the gayness the same way I did. They do a wonderful thing for any reader by letting us look at the romantic, chaotic lives of high schoolers with the freedom to cringe, laugh at and with the characters without a hint of judgement or blaming us for doing so.
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.
I'm a John Green fan (The Fault of Our Stars is a must-listen title) and this book was recommended to me because of that. The book threw me headlong into the anguish and ecstasy of high school kids and the struggle to know who we are and how to be ourselves. The two Will Graysons, very different teenagers engaged in that struggle for identity, are excellent characters that I liked a lot and was also annoyed with occasionally. The book also does a great job of showing the highs and lows of love from the straight and gay perspectives. The readers did an excellent job of covering an eclectic collection of interesting characters.
Audiophile since the days I had to check 'em out on rickety cassette tapes at the local library. Currently working the other side of production as an author of romance and scifi/fantasy.
One of the best "reads" I've had in a while. Definitely amongst the best audio adaptations I've purchased. Moving, tender, comical, brutally honest, and brave writing. That's right... BRAVE. There needs be more works like this on the market. Plus, it was almost like this book was meant to be audio. It transitions perfectly to that medium. Had me laughing until it hurt, and hurting until I laughed. READ THIS. Or better yet.... LISTEN TO THIS N*O*W
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.
This is a charming, engaging, and "real" story. I say real instead of realistic because some of the plot is quite improbable, but the characters are utterly convincing and lovable. Although the story is teen-centric, I appreciated that the minor characters of parents are portrayed as caring and understanding human beings and not as stereotypes or buffoons. Even the flamboyant Tiny Cooper, who is figuratively and literally larger than life, has a complex persona. The device which drives the story (and which forces the plot into its contortions) is that there are two very different Will Graysons, each written by a different author and voiced by a different reader, whose lives intersect at a time of mutual identity crisis. If I had to attribute my enjoyment of the story to one factor, it would be the respect with which the authors treat their characters and their very real teen struggles--with depression, loneliness, fame, purpose, and all kinds of love. A warning to the squeamish--the language can be quite candid and streetwise sometimes, but this is part of the verisimilitude.
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