Hey guys! I'm excited to be participating in the Fantastic Flying Book Club Tour for Love is Both Wave and Particle! This book is one that I had never heard of, and sometimes, that's just the kind of book I forward to reading the most!
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Love is Both Wave and Particle
by Paul Cody
Published: August 1st, 2017.
Goodreads Rating: 3.71 stars (17 Ratings)
My Rating: 3.5 stars (⋆ ⋆ ⋆)
"This achingly beautiful novel considers how to measure love when it has the power to both save and destroy.
Levon Grady and Samantha Vash are both students at an alternative high school for high-achieving but troubled teens. They have been chosen for a year-long project where they write their life stories and collect interviews from people who know them. The only rule is 100% confidentiality—they will share their work only with each other. What happens will transform their lives.
Told from the perspectives of Levon, Sam, and all the people who know them best, this is a love story infused with science and the exploration of identity. Love Is Both Wave and Particlelooks at how love behaves in different situations, and how it can shed light on even the darkest heart."
Originally, I was stuck between a 3 star and a 4 star review… in the end, I decided to go for 3.5 stars. The first 4-5 chapters were difficult to get through, but once you get the hang of the story, it's actually really clever!
It's senior year at a school for "high-achieving but troubled teens". Levon and Samantha are paired up by their teacher (I consider her a counselor) Meg, to work on a year long project where they will write the stories of their lives, but not just their writing! Their project will be infused with the writing of those close to them. This makes it interesting because not only do we see how our main characters see themselves, but also how those close to them see them and how they have made an impact in their lives.
Like I said at the beginning… the first few chapters are really difficult to get through because we're getting a lot of information from other characters. We get a lot of different voices and points of view all at once when we just started the book! But this is something I got used to after chapter 5 and it made the book fun afterwards!
As Samantha and Levon work on their project, they start to open up to each other. Levon is a quiet and reserved guy, but when people see that he is opening up to the new girl, suddenly everyone at school seems to be intrigued by this project and the changes it has brought! Are Levon and Samantha falling in love? Is the project helping them achieve self-discovery? (Maybe both?)
All of the stories we see through the book, are secret stories told by those characters. Meaning, our main characters won't read them until the project ends. Seeing how the stories of those close to Levon and Samantha were combined, and seeing how it all mixed with what they were writing and living, it really is unique! It's like the book IS the project itself!
The book touches (somewhat lightly) topics like self-harm, depression, and mental health. The concept of a small school like this one, where there are classrooms of 5-6 students and where people who need more attention or just a small place to be themselves are given the opportunity to express themselves, grow and learn? It's amazing. I really wish we had these types of school. (Maybe they exist and I just don't know?)
To end my quick review… this book has a rough beginning, but it's definitely worth the read! If you can get used to multiple POVs, don't miss the chance to pick up this unique contemporary book!
Overall rating: 3.5 stars
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About the Author
Paul Cody earned an MFA at Cornell University, and has published several novels and a memoir for adults. He lives in Ithaca, New York, with his wife, the poet Elizabeth Holmes, and their two sons. Love Is Both Wave and Particle is his first novel for teenagers.