Friday, December 5, 2008
Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist
Although I'm almost certain Hollywood has damaged another good young adult novel, I will give it credit for bringing my attention to Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan. I didn't realize it was a book until I saw it on display at Powells... a feature it was given I'm sure due to the movie release.
I added it to my list of books for the Young Adult Challenge, and I'm glad I did.
In alternating chapters, Cohn (writing as Norah) and Levithan (Nick) tell the story of Nick and Norah over the course of one night. They meet in a club when Nick asks Norah to be his 5 minute girlfriend when his recent ex shows up with her new guy. Norah only agrees because Nick's ex is also the last person she wants to see at the moment. When Nick's friends secretly pay Norah to entertain Nick for the night... a series of events takes off that just may shape up as a new relationship between the two.
The structure of the book is similar to Flipped except that Flipped retells almost the exact same moment from the other perspective, while N&N moves the story forward in each chapter. I really like the potential to teach perspective with books like these.
Ok. This book is so angsty. Norah is all over the place I probably wouldn't want to hang out with her... but Nick seems into it. The two find similiar interests in music and being sorta Straight Edge. Since when do Straight Edge kids make it into novels? Even if they're only the sorta kind. As a sorta Straight Edge kid myself, works for me.
Now, I haven't seen the film adaptation, but I suspect it differs. My impression of the trailers is that Nick and Norah are trying to track down a drunk friend all night. This doesn't really happen in the book. I also don't really see Michael Cera portraying the book version of Nick. And I wonder if all the racy bits were kept in? I was actually a little surprised with the details. I don't think I'll ever look at the ice room at a hotel the same ever again.
Recommendation: Doesn't everyone want to see the joining of two battered hearts?