After Will's brother Shawn was shot and killed, Will knows that the rules of his neighborhood dictate that he must exact revenge on his brother's murderer. As Will takes the elevator down to complete his deadly task, a victim of gun violence from his past boards the elevator at each floor. Reynolds, who might be YA literature's modern-day Shakespeare, crafts a masterful verse novel that readers will read quickly but ponder deeply, especially after the powerful final line.
Like Harry Potter, if Harry Potter was a teenage Nigerian girl with albinism who discovers that she has latent magical abilities and ends up not only saving Nigeria, but the entire world! Imagine if instead of picking out a wand, you got to pick out a juju knife...
Super creepy and weird, like a book version of a glitch remix of the Twin Peaks theme. Addison is hardcore AF and the things she is willing to put herself through in order to make it in this incredible post-apocalyptic world that Westerfeld has made had my palms sweating with anxiety.
Did I mention the twisted spirit-wolf-creature? Yeah. Totally awesome and terrifying. Ditto with the distorted color palette and reality in the Spill Zone. Definitely a modern cult classic -- I can't wait for the next book to come out!
WHY DID I WAIT SO LONG TO READ THIS OH MY GOD IT'S SO GOOD.
So as I was reading Firebug, I found myself snapping pictures of parts of it to send to my girlfriend, the writing was so good. Before I was even halfway through it (about 15 pics later), she had insisted that I get her her own copy, which she proceeded to devour and demand that I get her the sequel (Pyromantic). 24 hours later, I get a text:
"Is there going to be another sequel?"
If there's anything that every LGBTQ person of this day and age must know, it is that the small amount of freedom we have now has been paid for by the blood, sweat, and tears of the generations before us.
Two Boys Kissing is about more than just, well, two boys kissing. It's about being able to take a step back into the shoes of those prior generations and appreciate how far we have come in terms of achieving equality. No, it's nowhere near perfect, and no, this shouldn't even be an issue in the first place, but the fact that, yes, two boys are able to kiss in public, is a wonder to those who died in hate.
This is a book that gives you appreciation for how far we have come - for the fact that we cannot, and will not, be furthermore silenced.