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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

4.28 of 5 stars 4.28  ·  rating details  ·  28,051 ratings  ·  4,992 reviews
A lyrical novel about family and friendship from critically acclaimed author Benjamin Alire Sáenz.

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 shar
Hardcover, 359 pages
Published February 21st 2012 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2012)
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1. Obtain a copy of Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe.

2. Read the book.

3. Fall in love. Fall in love with the writing, the characters, everything. Read past midnight, read in school, read everywhere and all the time. Slam the book shut and whisper-scream oh my gosh, oh my gosh, oh my gosh. At the end of the book, allow a single tear to run down your right cheek and say a silent prayer of thanks for the fact that you are able to read at all.

This book was so so beautiful.

In actuality, it doesn't have a "plot". Not a main story or event that the characters center around. It's about a boy. It's a story about a boy who is sad and angry and can't figure out why. It's about him trying to love himself and others. It's about the teenage condition and mentality.

Let's talk about why I loved it. Mainly, I loved the mood and tone. It made me feel mellow and warm. I liked that it was slow paced, that it felt like real life with small but import

Oh gosh, my feelings are all over the place.

It started in a very captivating way. I liked the narrator. Aristotle-nicknamed Ari-is a calm fifteen-year-old boy who prefers being alone...He doesn’t feel comfortable being around people his age but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’s a recluse. Everyone things he’s sad and lonely but, really, he doesn’t mind it.

And then he meets Dante.

Dante who made him see the world differently. Gosh, how much I loved that character. Everything about him made me th
i really thought this was going to be a slam-dunk of a book. all those prestigious awards and recognitions, a gay coming-of-age story that got the coveted dana stamp of approval, that cover….

and it is not a bad book, not by a long shot; i definitely enjoyed reading it. it just doesn't transcend its YA status like so many YA books do. this is an excellent book for its audience, but for me, it doesn't have that crossover appeal that so many recent YA titles have had.

it gets points for featuring a
Do you remember the feeling you get when you watch the sun rise or set?

Do you remember the feeling you get when you're so happy that you felt like flying?

Do you remember the feeling you get when you're so sad and alone that you felt like curling yourself into a ball and wishing you never had to move on?

Do you remember the feeling you get when you're so mad that you don't know why your mad?

Do you remember the feeling you get when you wished you knew the mysteries of life?

Well, this book brought u
All the Secrets of the Universe
Through all of youth I was looking for you
without knowing what I was looking for

— W.S. Merwin

The Book Smugglers , a book review blog, wrote this review, and I quoted ...

"I think the best thing I can say about the book is how I can see Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe as a book that can be picked for a lit class to be dissected for its craft and examined for its themes BUT only after the reader is able to recover from becoming a blubbering me
Emily May
I have been saving this book. Just waiting for the right moment for us to come together and love one another. And this book is fine, I guess. It's okay. But I really don't see the magic that prompted so many five star ratings and literary awards.

It's weird because I was sure we were meant for each other. A Printz Honor book featuring a gay romance between two quirky characters - one of whom is a rough guy who gets into fights and has a complicated relationship with his father; the other being a

Posted at Shelf Inflicted

I really loved Last Night I Sang to the Monster. It was sad, beautiful and powerful. It moved me deeply, making me cry buckets, shredding my heart to pieces and putting it all back together. I’m not really a crier. If a story has the kind of power to turn me inside out, then I want more.

So you can imagine how thrilled I was to finally get a copy of Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe from the library. The cover is gorgeous and infused with meaning.
Such an amazing story about love, identity, and family. I really feel everyone should read this book.
Raeleen Lemay

”We all fight our own private wars.”

Secrets. Some secrets and truths in life we discover and share along the way. Others we hold close. But there are some things that should not be kept in and hidden away. Who we are in life. Who we want to be. Who we want to love should never be hidden. These are secrets Dante and Aristotle learn along their journey to manhood.

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz is a beautiful book. Simple. Pure. Powerful. Poetic. My
Rachel ♥Reads Ravenously♥
5 stars!!!!!

“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.”

 photo arianddante.png

This was beautiful.

The year is 1987. Ari is a loner, he keeps to himself and prefers it that way. One day, at the age of 15, Ari ventures to the public pool where he loves to float. There, he meets Dante who offers to teach him how to swim. From then on the two are best buds, inseparable for the entire summer. Sketching, reading, talking

4.5 stars

I'm verklempt.

I want to use all the right words to do this book justice, but I'll fail. And that makes me angry. At myself. And at this book for being so great that I can't describe it properly. And at the author for giving me this book and jumbling up all my emotions. And for making me love it so.

^^^ and that is how this book goes. Because this is how Ari goes. He's an angry young teenager who doesn't know why. Who's so deeply honest with himself inside but so shut down to the world ar
"The problem with my life was that it was someone else’s idea."

It’s funny how just the other day I was talking about writing craft, the combination of skill and care that is so important when putting together a story and how certain books unfortunately fail in every conceivable way.

It is possible that Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe is the antithesis to every single terrible book I’ve read lately. In fact, Aristotle and Dante is the kind of book that gives me hope that
Ellen Hopkins
This book speaks to the heart of humanity. Poetic. Beautiful .
Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
No matter how many books I review, I so rarely describe them as beautiful, and yet, when I started thinking about Aristotle and Dante, beautiful was the only word that pushed itself to the forefront of my mind. It is a gorgeously written, warm little book that would melt even the most hardened of hearts. The second I finished it, I found myself torn between the need to celebrate it rather loudly, and the odd desire to keep it jealously to myself. Alas, with the well-deserved Printz medal on its ...more
Aug 08, 2012 Catie rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Catie by: Malinda Lo
Shelves: read-in-2012, romance, ya, lgbt
I have so many books to review, but I wanted to make sure to write something about this one because it was my favorite of all the books I read on vacation. I wasn’t sure about Benjamin Alire Sáenz. Earlier this year, I read the beginning of, and subsequently gave up on, Last Night I Sang to the Monster . There was something about the writing or the main character that put me off. So I was a little worried about this one, but with all of the great reviews it’s received so far, I just had to give ...more

W O W !!
Giselle at BO-OK NERD Canada
Aristotle has the type of personality you know that will confuse you. He'll say one thing and think the opposite. He's a walking contradiction. When he saves his best friend Dante's life, he realizes that friendship is probably one of the most important things in a boy's life.

Love the family dynamics! There was so much to like. Aristotle's mom who is fiercely protective of her only son. His dad who shows how much he cares in his actions. Dante's parents who love him so much and treat him just li
(some spoilers sorry!)
I love love love this book!!! Here's the funny part half way through I returned my book to the library because I thought the book was just another Bromance-that-doesn't-lead-to-romance but I was wrong. There are so many things I loved about this book, I loved that at first I could not tell it was a gay book even though the bromance was extreme I really couldn't tell and I didn't know for sure Dante was gay until half way through the book. And I had no idea Ari was gay until
"Ari, Ari, Ari. You're fighting this war in the worst possible way"
"I don't know how to fight it, Dad."
"You should ask for help," he said
"I don't know how to do that either."

(that was pretty much me...)
Anyta Sunday
Oh my, oh my, heart is a fluttering.

This story is simply beautiful. Languid, and beautiful. We get life from Ari's perspective, but we don't just see it, we're made to question and live it with him. His musings on life and the universe really boil down to his relationships, with his mom, his reserved father, his imprisoned brother, and Dante's family, and Dante.


Gosh, the way he sees this boy is beautiful. I fell in love with Dante reading this book.

I think that's what the author did so fa

I am not exactly fond of "Coming Of Age" novels. Usually I end up hating them, so after two or three I just stopped trying... When I picked this book, I had no idea about the genre, the plot, I didn't know a thing.
Actually, I just liked the cover.

Yeah. The cover made me read this book. I was sitting in my train to university, roaming over my list of books and then stumbled over this one, remembered the mesmerising cover and decided to just give it a chance.
I ended up missing half of the thing
Jesus Christ but the adults in this book are just unbelievably well-adjusted.

Holy shit.

I mean, I’m not saying I was expecting “Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe and Shortly Thereafter Dante is Tragically Beaten To Death with a Tire Iron by Men Who Fear What They Don’t Understand and Dammit Dante, Aristotle Wishes He Knew How To Quit You,” but neither was I expecting this:


Ari, the problem isn’t just that Dante’s in love with you. The real problem—for you, anyw
Estoy con un nudo en la garganta. Quiero llorar de felicidad. Me encanto, y la verdad es que no se cuanto más contarles, se me hace difícil entender lo que siento por este libro más allá de que me gusto mucho <3
Reseña completa en Gracias a los Libros.
I really loved this book. The writing was amazing, and I found myself quickly enthralled. The characters are vivid, blanced, and real. They felt like real teenagers to me with all of their hopes, and their fears, and their dreams. I really enjoyed getting to know Dante. His growth, and development over the course of the story was a pleasure to read. I love the balance between him, and Aristotle. The differences in their personality, and views on the world made thier friendship that much richer. ...more
Going to make this short and sweet.

This book is something special, so simple and beautifully told. Everyone should read this at least once in a lifetime and discover along with Ari and Dante the secrets of the universe.
Clau R.
Danny Phanton
Lo primero que tengo que decir sobre este libro es que la portada es simplemente HERMOSA. Desde la primera vez que vi este libro me gusto mucho la portada y todo mundo hablaba maravillas de este libro, así que mis ganas de leerlo crecieron y por fin pude leerlo.

El libro cuenta la historia de dos chicos, dos adolescentes que están perdidos por el mundo, que crecen, que se descubren a ellos mismos, es un libro con una historia sencilla y con problemas y unos personajes tan reales y que llegas a id
"I mean, when do we start feeling like the world belongs to us?"

I wanted to tell him that the world would never belong to us. "I don't know," I said. "Tomorrow.”

What can I say? Sometimes my mind is hyperactive and can't order its thoughts. Sometimes it's speechless. I'm not sure what the case is this time. It blew my mind, definitely. I'll be a honest cheater and use sentences from the book for my very own benefit because I just can't find better words to describe how I feel. So if you still w
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Benjamin Alire Sáenz (born 16 August 1954) is an award-winning American poet, novelist and writer of children's books.

He was born at Old Picacho, New Mexico, the fourth of seven children, and was raised on a small farm near Mesilla, New Mexico. He graduated from Las Cruces High School in 1972. That fall, he entered St. Thomas Seminary in Denver, Colorado where he received a B.A. degree in Humaniti
More about Benjamin Alire Sáenz...
Last Night I Sang to the Monster Everything Begins and Ends at the Kentucky Club Sammy and Juliana in Hollywood He Forgot to Say Goodbye Carry Me Like Water

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“Words were different when they lived inside of you.” 603 likes
“I bet you could sometimes find all the mysteries of the universe in someone's hand.” 536 likes
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