Monday, September 30, 2013

Book Review --> Aristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

By: Benjamin Alire Saenz
Published  By:  Simon & Schuster
Publish Date:  Feb. 21th 2012
Pages: 359 hardcover
Tags:  Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Coming of Age, Contemporary Fiction, Stand Alone, GLBT
Source:  Community Library

Concoction of a Review:

Honestly, the Mad Scientist was even more clueless as to what to read when I went to library after being out of the US of A for nearly 6 months.  What is a Mad Scientist to do?  With having so many literary awards on such a beautiful cover MS just felt like she could not go wrong.  Besides I think everyone of us could us a few secrets of the universe.  Walking out of the library with book in gloved hands MS just did not know what she was getting into with Aristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe.  
"My mother and father held hands. I wondered what that was like, to hold someone's hand. I bet you could sometimes find all the mysteries of the universe in someone's hand." - page 140
Aristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe is told through a very young angry loner, Aristotle aka Ari. Ari & Dante met when the were 15 during one of those boring summers where you wait for something amazing to happen. It was a friendship they both seemed to bumble and stumble through with such little grace you could not help but wonder and smile at them.  It was a friendship were they spent days & nights laughing at each other, looking at the stars, experiencing sexual struggles & trying to navigate through cultural identity.  Of course, we also had bits and pieces of questioning the universe. 

Now the Mad Scientist is not one to cry over a book.  We wouldn't want to get rusty, now would we?  However, once I finished this particular book... I did.  The romance that I did not see or expect at all just jarred me which in turn made MS cry.  A few perfect tears, the roll down the cheeks kind. The jealous & strong emotions of Ari wanting to protect Dante at any cost had my heart. Dear boy!

Here is how I picture Ari & Dante: 

Cute 'u'
Truly one of the best GLBT books MS has had the pleasure to read. Even if it was unexpected!

Benjamin Alire Saenz wrote the book in such a way that it is hard for MS to describe it in any other way then being beautiful.  The heavy handed issues about self identity and coming to age were managed with class & great writing that made it beautiful to read.  The writing, the characters, the story, the relationship was just too beautiful. 

"You could smell the rain in the desert even before a drop fell. I closed my eyes. I held my head out and felt the first drops. It was like a kiss. The sky was kissing me." - page 293

The awards were greatly deserved and MS is so happy to have spied this beauty on the shelf. Congratulations Benjamin! It was a great welcome back to the US of A & regular reading.

** Thanks to the Oneida Community Library and Inter-Library Loan! All Mad thoughts are presented in the right mind of a twisted brain of the Mad Scientist!**

5.0 Blasts --->  Loved it!
I loved how such important issues were brought together in a flawless story.
I urge you to Read it soon!!


  1. I've heard a LOT of good things about this one, so I'm glad you enjoyed it. I plan on picking it up sometime soon myself, so I can't wait for the reading experience!(: Great review!

  2. Wow, first time I've heard of this one but the cover looks beautiful! I haven't read a GLBT book before, thanks for sharing.

  3. The perfect kind of tears sounds great to me :)

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