This is a book by my favorite author that I never got around to reading! Love Is The Higher Law by David Levithan isn't my favorite book by him, but I did enjoy it.
It's about three teenagers (one of them is out of high school) who are living in New York when the tragedies of 9/11 occur. The story goes through the year and how it affects the characters and how they change the way that they think and live their lives.
Claire, Jasper, and Peter are all very different. Claire was probably the character who you could say was most affected by 9/11. Throughout the story, she realizes a lot of things about her life and how she thought before, and how she thinks now. She is in the same class as Peter. Peter is personally my favorite character of the three, mostly because he has a passion for music. After 9/11 he realizes how true some of the lyrics of the songs he listens to are, which I can really relate to. He and Jasper met at a party and were had planned to go out on 9/11. Then after the incident, they decide to change the date to another time. On their date, it’s terribly awkward and just a bit sad to read. Claire becomes closer friends with Peter after that, and she meets Jasper one night when she is too tired to sleep. After this, she becomes friends with both Peter and Jasper, separately. At one point, Peter and Jasper meet up again and in Jasper’s part of the story, he says something about how they both love Claire, and it only seems right for them to be together because they can’t be with her. I like how the three characters are all so different in the way that they act and think, yet the ways that they become friends and the complications between their friendships. Jasper and Peter are also gay, and I love gay characters (as bad as that sounds for stereotyping them). So they definitely had a soft spot for me while reading this book.
In the author's note, Levithan says that he was working in New York at the time of 9/11 and for many months afterwards. He also says that some of the phrases in the book are taken directly from emails sent to his friends after 9/11.
I found this very interesting how he was able to incorporate his own words from the time into his story of the past. I also liked how this book was written by someone who had experienced it in the same place it had happened, as opposed to an author who lived in California and heard only heard the news on TV or in the newspaper. This author was actually there at the time, and it gives the book more credibility and authenticity.
This really isn’t my type of book, because it goes more into history, and I am not really a history-type of girl. Despite that, I did like how reading this book made me more aware of 9/11 and more information about it and how it has affected my country. I was only 5 or 6 at the time, and nowhere near New York. Being so young, my parents didn’t tell me anything about it. I am glad that after reading this, I was able to learn some facts about the event and become more educated about the past.
I would recommend this book to everyone. Whether you know a lot about 9/11, know a little bit, or don’t know anything at all, it’s definitely a good book to read. And even if you don’t live in the United States and this particular day doesn’t mean anything to you, it’s still a good book to read! There’s still a little bit of romance and friendship and optimism. I did like this book, even though its not one of my favorites. I would give it a 3.5 out of 5 stars.
Happy reading! <3