Author: David Levithan, Rachel Cohn
Series: Dash & Lily #1
Published by: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: October 26, 2010
“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?
Okay, so I resisted the holiday themed books all through the holidays, but then was presented with the chance to read Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares once they were over. So I took it. Ever since reading Every Day by David Levithan, I’ve been dying to read another book written by him. Sure, David only wrote half of Dash and Lily, but it totally counts. One the other hand, I have not read anything by Rachel Cohn until this book. But now I’m looking forward to more from her.
This book was a lot of fun. The story takes place from December 21st to January 1st, and is told from the alternating POVs of Dash and Lily, both sixteen. I loved these two! Dash is … hmm… how to explain Dash… he’s kind of punkish, but in a literary way. Does that even make sense? He’s a Mr. Bah Humbug, and is glad to be spending Christmas alone. Lily, on the other hand, loves Christmas. A lot. Unfortunately for Lily, she winds up alone for the holidays and doesn’t like it one bit. The girl is quite the character. She’s spunky in an awkward oddball sort of way. I couldn’t help but love her quirkiness.
When Dash finds a red moleskin journal with a scavenger hunt in it, he can’t resist following the clues around the bookstore. What follows is a lot of back-and-forth between Dash and Lily, strictly through the journal. In order the get the journal back from each other, they have to do the dares the other had set up. In the process, they learn about each other, and even discover some things about themselves. Their adventures were a riot to read sometimes, and I could picture them so well doing all of those dares.
There comes a time when they’ll have to meet face-to-face. But will they live up the person they’ve envisioned in their mind? Or will it be a total let down? Maybe they shouldn’t meet at all. That was a dilemma they faced, and there were a couple of times I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. I was happy with how it unfolded, though. It was all very sweet.
Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares also had an amazing set of secondary characters. I absolutely adored Boomer, Dash’s good friend. The kid was hilarious! Then the involvement of Lily’s family, and how they constantly described Dash as snarly was too funny. Secondary characters can add a lot to a story, and these did wonderfully.
I know this story takes place during Christmastime, but really, it can be read any time of year. Actually, it’s a perfect read for Valentine’s.