I just finished reading Jesse Andrew’s first novel, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, probably 7 minutes ago. I read this book in two days for two reasons 1) it was good and 2) I want to return it to my friend before winter break.
Off the bat, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, is an interestingly written novel because it is written in three different formats.
- Regular prose
- As a script, due to the fact that the “author” of the novel, Greg Gaines, is a filmmaker.
- Bullet points, because Greg claims “for a while [he] got tired of writing the normal way, but now [he’s] also tired of writing the bullet-point way” (170, Andrews)
Due to these different formats, and short chapter lengths, this novel is a relatively easy read.
In some ways, the writing style of Andrews reminded me of the writing style of John Green (which I’m not a fan of, as stated in my An Abundance of Katherines review), but this writing style works in favor of the narrator. The almost stream-of-consciousness way of writing propels the reader into the world and mind of socially awkward Greg Gaines.
I, for one was a fan of Earl and Rachel, the dying girl, but was not at all a fan of Greg’s. Though Earl was very vulgar, I could not help but liking him and his interesting way of constantly sliding curse words into every sentence. Rachel, of course, is likable, being the dying girl fighting leukemia. But Greg… I don’t know why I don’t like him exactly. Could it be the way he constantly puts himself down, or the way he makes jokes out of the oddest topics?
Of five stars, I give Me and Earl and the Dying Girl a rating of