Warning, This book has a wrenching effects,will cause shudders and goosebumps.
It is safe to say that I've read this book multiple times, not that I read it over and over, but more because I found myself stopping at almost every passage and rereading it from the start and rereading it and so on. Every sentence was heaven and every line a rich quote.
I'm a sucker for:
1) Eloquent, simple but deep writing.
2) Coming of age stories.
3) Innovative point of views.
4) Various stories that cross path, make deep impacts without too much overlapping.
And yes of course all there.
Consists of various stories, around the center 'masterpiece' of the two boys kissing. A 32 hours and 10 secs kiss to break a world record. Every story is something we've heard before. The bullied, the lost soul, the new relationship, the one year old relationship and one that ended a while back. But man, oh man David puts it in such a unique way that astonished and impressed. Smooth transitions without any chapters or barriers between the stories.
All that aside, the narrating is what made it so well put together and polished the stories. That voice of experience and suffering from dead boys, dead gay boys, dead gay boys with HIV. The way they cheered and advised and held their breath at moments that mattered and their attempts to help, as much as ghosts can help the living.
We were once the ones who were living, and then we were the ones who were dying. We sewed ourselves, a thread`s width, into your history.... This is how we understand. We wore your flaws. We wore your fears. We made your mistakes.
First thing that comes to my mind about HIV is a new movie I always wanted to see about a poor woman with the disease suffering because she has to go another operation and no doctor is agreeing to performing it so she goes on a TV show to try and raise money so she could travel to have it abroad. And of course I didn't watch the movie but I only always catch the last scene where she looks straight into the camera and says: "When I die of this disease, I will be dying from your disease not mine". Your of course is society, me and you and your mother and my brother and the shame and all the arbitrary shit that we live by, all the judgement that we learn to do well before we learn how to speak.
In terms of relatability I was surprised because before anything it was about acceptance and coping and friends and family and deep conversations you`ll always remember even after the words blur you WILL remember the sensations you were left with?! The drowning metaphor for depression is probably one of the most commonly overused ones. But it`s terribly descriptive AND TRUE. The sadness pushing down on your shoulders, the barrier between the one and the rest of the world and the infuriated unjustified rage of the world not seeing or acknowledging the existence of that barrier.
On social media:
" It`s a highly deceptive world, one that constantly asks you to comment but doesn't really care what you have to say. The illusion of participating can sometimes lead to participation. But more often that not, it only leads to more illusion, dressed in the guise of reality... If you let the world in, you open yourself up to the world. Even if the world doesn`t know you`re there.