Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan


Goodreads blurb
“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”

So begins the latest whirlwind romance from the bestselling authors of Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?

First line: “Imagine this: You’re in your favorite bookstore, scanning the shelves.”

Title: Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares
Author: Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
My edition: Paperback published by Ember in 2014, with 260 pages
Age: 14+
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Holiday, Christmas

The reason I bought it was because I was looking for a christmassy book to read during my Christmas break, and I found it on Book Depository and just ordered it!

So the plot is basically about Dash and Lily, two completely different people who buy books at the same bookstore. When Dash finds a red notebook in between some books in the bookstore, he does the dares written inside by Lily, and they begin this journey through the notebook. The plot was simple, and as an avid reader I thought that a book about books basically, had to be something that I would like. The book starts at December 21st, and it is written from both sides (Lily and Dash), and all though it was smart to do it that way because it gave us both sides of the story.

But, the plot was slow, and all though it was interesting and I kept wanting them to meet, I felt like it was a weird contemporary. Now, I’m not so familiar with YA contemporary, I haven’t read a lot of it, and therefore I sometimes end up not liking them because I feel like they become too cliché. This book reminded me of John Green’s books, it’s always about boy meets girl, they’re both seriously quirky and weird and nothing like the reader (in my case anyways), and therefore I never feel connected to the characters and ergo, I don’t like the plot. I felt like the plot had so many alternative routes it could take, but it took the most obvious one and I ended up not liking it as much.

Now, all though I’ve become an avid reader, I have not touched a lot of genres and therefore, this book felt out of my league. It was so many references to people and characters in both books and movies I had no idea was, that it became this annoying thing where I felt stupid. The writing is okay, I have nothing bad to say about it, it’s simple, but it has a lot of weird words that I had to google in order to understand the sentence and, yeah, it was just not my kind of book.

Dash is what I felt was the typical “bad boy” who acted like a jerk sometimes and I seriously could NOT like him. He felt like Jess in Gilmore Girls, well read, smart, but so damn irritating because he was such a jerk. Yeah, I have absolutely nothing good to say about him other than that his name was creative.

Lily was more a character I could relate to, basically because she’s kind of the “odd one out” when it came to friends and school. But she was way TOO quirky. There were so many things that kind of destroyed the fact that she was 16 years old. She felt 10 maybe 11 at most sometimes…

And then there is the fact that both Dash and Lily have parents who seems like they actually don’t give a shit. Dash’s parents are divorced and have new partners, and Dash totally tricks them into thinking that he’s at the other parent’s house when in reality everyone’s going on holiday and he’s left behind. Lily’s parents decide to take a trip to Fiji, and leave her with her older brother in New York during Christmas, and I seriously could not understand how that was even possible. Leave your children at home while you go on a holiday during the holidays.

I never made it to the ending, I quit.

I couldn’t relate to the characters, I liked the plot at times, but I felt like it went in the “wrong” direction for me to like. It did have some holiday themes, but I felt like it was too much focus on everything but Christmas, and therefore I was a little disappointed.

11/13 – Marked as to-read
12/18 – Marked as currently reading
12/18 – Page 20 / 7% “‘Well sure, who doesn’t need a boyfriend? But realistically those exotic creatures are hard to come by.'”
12/18 – Page 58 / 22% “I feel like Dash is a douche and Lily is immature…”
12/19 – Page 118/ 45%  “Still not sure about this book”
12/26 – Page 139 / 53% “Can characters bee too special to even like them? I always want to relate to characters, but neither Dash or Lily makes me think of myself..”
12/26 – Page 139 / 53% “‘If you couldn’t trust a bookstore, what could you trust?'”
12/26 – Page 171 / 65% “well Dash is a jerk”
12/26 – Marked as read

Nah, probably not if I’d read it first.

I would recommend it to people who like contemporary with some holiday festivity in it. It’s probably a good read if you’re into quirky teenagers who find each other in the most unlikely circumstances.

“If you couldn’t trust a bookstore, what could you trust?”



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