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Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl

Jesse Andrews

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, by Jesse Andrews, is sweet, funny, and just a tad bit emotional. Greg, the main character, is the master of blending in high school. In reality,, Greg has one friend, Earl. Together Greg and Earl make crazy movies and films, only to hide them away for no one else to see. But that’s until Greg’s mother forces him to fix his friendship with Rachel. Rachel has been diagnosed with leukemia, cue extreme awkwardness. But a parental request has been issued, and it must be obeyed. When Rachel’s treatment is stopped, Greg and Earl decide to make her a film, which soon became “The Worst Film Ever Created.” And at all at once, Greg is forced out of his invisible bubble and into the shining spotlight of attention.

Me, Earl, and a Dying Girl is hilarious, funny, and a fun story. One of the best things about this book is that the illness is a subplot in an otherwise really funny novel. Greg is a fantastic protagonist and the jokes vary between witty sarcasm and a bit of ridiculous schoolboy humor. And the even better thing is that Andrews doesn't try to manipulate the reader's emotions, I didn't feel like I was being forced to cry or pity Rachel, and I appreciated the author's message that sometimes bad things happen, things go wrong and people die. Greg feels like he should be moved by Rachel's illness, he feels like he should hang out with her. Andrews finds himself wishing he could ignore the whole situation, carry on with his life, and pretend it isn't happening. Maybe you won't like this sentiment, but it felt honest.

Grade Level:

- Suggested: 6th-8th

- Advanced: 5th

- Genre: Realistic-fiction

- Key Elements: Leukemia, films

- Possible Themes: Don’t force feelings

Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Happy Reading!

-The Book Lover-

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