The way that I have been inspired to read teen literature tends to be from meeting authors, listening to them talk about their work, and then getting curious about what they wrote. This happened to me first with Walter Dean Myers, then with David Levithan. I heard Levithan discuss his work at a Teen Week event at The New York Public Library and was inspired to read How They Met and Other Stories. Levithan seemed very interesting to me. I have read some of his other works, but I am impressed by the variety of perspectives he has on love stories in this particular work. Explore more of Levithan's work in the Library's collection >>
The following is a booktalk that I wrote for high school students:
How They Met & Other Stories by David Levithan, 2008
Ever get stuck babysitting a six-year-old who turns out to love Starbucks, only to find out a dreamy guy who works there decides he wants to hang out with you?
What about stepping up to be interviewed for college by an alum who just happens to be your closeted boyfriend’s father?
Or bringing your date “Glinda the Good Witch” to the prom, when your strongest desire was to artfully dodge her bold attempts to ensure that there was absolutely no air between you two?
How about dating a “startling boy,” the son of one of your father’s business partners, and you don’t even know what business they’re in, let alone who this Andrew Chang is. By your account, he appears to be a clone of his father... and he definitely can’t move his feet in a coordinated manner on the dance floor.
What about desperately trying to get your family to accept your dancer boyfriend and allow him to attend your Bar Mitzvah? You’re lucky if you have a brother who will stand up to your parents on your behalf and defend your right to be with your love on that special day.
From gay men and/or women who haven't yet realized that they’re gay to gay and straight stories of romance, Levithan writes from a cornucopia of perspectives in this eye-opening collection of romantic short stories.