Book Review

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe: Book Review

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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
Title: Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
Published: 2/21/2012
Page Count: 359
Goodreads Rating: 4.34
Format: Hardcover
Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn…

First impression/ expectation:

The title!! what captivated me…for some reason thought it would be a philosophical book or an epic kind of novel but I was so wrong It was unexpected, it was thought inducing and breathtaking at the same damn time.

For those who know, you know that I’m not the biggest fan of YA, but some authors get you good I didn’t think I’d be interested at all but shockingly I fell in love with it by the first chapter. This is hard to believe but for the first time, I will reread this book since its the kind that I can’t get enough of. I thank one of my best friends, cause what would I do without such friends who hook you up with good books.

What the book is about?

-It is an introspective coming-of-age story about two Mexican-American boys growing up in El Paso, Texas, in 1987. It brings up questions of identity, particularly in terms of sexuality and sexual orientation each boy experiments with kissing a girl; one also does so with a boy. Ari (Aristotle) has anger issues, then there’s Dante a know- it- all. The two strike up a friendship that blossoms into something beautiful and something more. The story is told from Ari’s perspective the boy who is shrunk inside himself until Dante comes along the articulate, smart caring boy, his different view of the world changes Ari’s idea as the unusual friendship forms, best part they are each other’s key to setting the other free.

But the book’s real focus is friendship and how the perspective and love of a good friend can make you look at yourself differently and motivate you to change for the better.

I did try to hold my tears which were hard so crying was the option, it was so heartwarming and the revelation Ari discovers at the end is too much.


Favourite quotes:

“Words were different when they lived inside of you.”

“I got to thinking that poems were like people. Some people you got right off the bat. Some people you just didn’t get–and never would get.”

“Another secret of the universe: Sometimes pain was like a storm that came out of nowhere. The clearest summer could end in a downpour. Could end in lightning and thunder.”

“I bet you could sometimes find all the mysteries of the universe in someone’s hand.”-the intriguing one

“The summer sun was not meant for boys like me. Boys like me belonged to the rain.”

“To be careful with people and with words was a rare and beautiful thing.”

“Maybe we just lived between hurting and healing.”

“I wanted to tell them that I’d never had a friend, not ever, not a real one. Until Dante. I wanted to tell them that I never knew that people like Dante existed in the world, people who looked at the stars, and knew the mysteries of water, and knew enough to know that birds belonged to the heavens and weren’t meant to be shot down from their graceful flights by mean and stupid boys. I wanted to tell them that he had changed my life and that I would never be the same, not ever. And that somehow it felt like it was Dante who had saved my life and not the other way around. I wanted to tell them that he was the first human being aside from my mother who had ever made me want to talk about the things that scared me. I wanted to tell them so many things and yet I didn’t have the words. So I just stupidly repeated myself. “Dante’s my friend.”


Why I loved the book and kept reading:

Character development was amazing. I pictured myself as both those boys and grew up with them and their friendship.

I also found my emotions being roused by the author and I got to say, not many books can get me emotionally but this one did.

The book makes you feel, the writer didn’t have to explain the two boys cared for each other you just know, what I got from the author is the perfection of showing not telling.

This book wasn’t cliched at all.

I hope you all check out this book and love it as much as I did   😀

My rating: 4.8

Purchase the book below.


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