gAristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
By: Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be.
This book is definitely one of my all-time favorites and I can see myself going back and re-reading it multiple times. The writing style is beautiful and the story and characters are so fleshed out and real. I connected with them on a level that I usually am not able to when reading a book, especially a stand-alone. This book is no doubt a 5-star read for me.
What peaked my interest when I first saw this book (aside from the beautiful cover) is the fact that it’s set in Texas. Although it’s set in my home state, it’s set in El Paso, a city I’ve never visited. El Paso is more towards the Mexico border (hence the main characters being Hispanic) than where I live, so the world development was important to me. I knew that El Paso was mainly just desert so I was happy that played an element in this story. Ari and Dante drive out to the desert when they want to get away from everything. The world development played a huge part in the character development and I found that aspect of the novel beautiful and unique in it’s own sense.
I think that the character development in this novel was the most important element of all. Ari and Dante both go through so much in this novel to form the people they become at the end. They grow as characters and discover who they want to be, as well as their sexuality. The best thing about these characters is that they’re realistic and human, and they rely on each other more than anything else in the world. When they’re separated, bad things seem to happen. They’re better together, and that’s why they’re
soulmates best friends. They go through life’s most difficult struggles together, and help each other navigate through the harsh realities of life, just like a true companion should do. They’re the ultimate book OTP.
The plot in this book seemed very natural and was planned out very well by the author. This book starts off during summer, and then ends during the beginning or end of another summer (I believe, this review is very belated, so it’s been months since I read this book). I just liked how the book had a nice flow to it, the writing was very poetic, which allowed for great transitions and short (but somehow still informative) transitions between characters, situations, and locations. I cannot wait until the sequel comes out later this year (I believe later this year, or at least I hope).
Let me know what you think of the book and my review in the comments below!