Sep 12, 2012

Review: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews
March 1st, 2012 from Abrams

Greg Gaines is the last master of high school espionage, able to disappear at will into any social environment. He has only one friend, Earl, and together they spend their time making movies, their own incomprehensible versions of Coppola and Herzog cult classics.

Until Greg’s mother forces him to rekindle his childhood friendship with Rachel.

Rachel has been diagnosed with leukemia - cue extreme adolescent awkwardness - but a parental mandate has been issued and must be obeyed. When Rachel stops treatment, Greg and Earl decide the thing to do is to make a film for her, which turns into the Worst Film Ever Made and becomes a turning point in each of their lives.

And all at once Greg must abandon invisibility and stand in the spotlight.

How can a book about a dying girl be totally hilarious? Not sure, but ask Jesse Andrews because he sure knows how to write one! Greg is the King of Awkward. Wait, awkward isn't really the right word. His friend, Earl, is even more of a case. Together, they are a total mess and pretty much all on their own. Social rejects at its finest. Who wants to hang out with two dorks that make movies in their backyard? #raiseshand When Greg's mother forces him to spend time with Rachel, a dying girl he doesn't even know, Greg puts his humor-to-get-through-the-day skills to the test. All he has to do is cheer up Rachel and move on with his life. No easy task, but the kid does his best. Que sad violin music...

I really have to prepare myself to read books about dying teenagers. I have two myself and I cannot imagine going something traumatic like that. So, I avoid sad books at pretty much all cost. When I picked this book up because Andrews was coming to ATBF12, I braced myself and the box of tissues. I was SO pleasantly surprised by the lack of tears. I laughed out loud, literally, so many times! Maybe some of you will be upset that there is no cotton candy ending, but hey....

The best part of this story are the characters. Earl is a total pig, and I love his in-your-face sense of humor. He smokes, he throws the P word around, and there isn't much to like about him - but I did! Greg is dorkalicious, and I rolled my eyes so many times at his crazy antics and conversations with girls. I really didn't connect too much with Rachel. Did I need to when Greg and Earl were so dynamic? No, I don't think I missed out on anything.

If you are looking for something really different and original, I found your next read!
15+ due to the hilarious use of foul language

Add to Goodreads
You can find Andrews at his website
Andrews is coming to #ATBF12!