Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
Published October 26th 2010 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
This is a book that needs to be read. Christmas is a time for celebration for Lily but with her parents abroad and her brother busy, she must find other ways and people to spend time with. So, she writes a set of instructions in a red moleskin diary and leaves it in the local bookstore, The Strand. And so sets of a chain of events that sees both Lily and the recipient of her red notebook, Dash, running around Manhattan, getting into trouble and meeting each of the others’ friends and family along the way.
I was hesitant to pick up this book at first, only because I thought I had read something like this before. I needn’t have worried. I found Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares to be highly original and entertaining.
Lily was very much your friendly and goodnatured yet slightly shy girl, full of Christmas Spirit. Whereas, on the other hand, Dash was your extremely cynical, not to mention pretentious boy, desperately lacking in Christmas spirit. How could they not be perfect for each other?
We don’t see a lot of Dash’s parents, but we understand that his snarly-ness (is that a word?) comes from the fact that his parents are divorced and cannot stand each other in the slightest. To add to that Dash’s father is a very cold, distant figure who never shows any interest or love towards his only son. This contrasts hugely between that of Lily’s family who are all extremely close to each other.
Our main characters first impressions of each other were far from positive (Lily was somewhat drunk and even though it was a once time thing, Dash did not know that). However, they do finally, get over their initial apprehension of each other, though not before a badly aimed snowball angers a horde of over-protective mothers ending in the both of them being escorted to prison. After all there is nothing more romantic then spending a little time behind bars together…
In short, Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares did not disappoint, and I cannot wait to start the sequel.