Tuesday, August 14, 2007

And with those five little words Denis Cooverman sets out on a graduation night adventure he'll never forget. Denis the bright, awkward valedictorian of Buffalo Grove High School in Larry Doyle's brilliant debut novel I Love You, Beth Cooper, is the kind of hero we can all root for, and that many of us can empathize with.
You see Denis didn't just walk up to Beth and whisper those words in her ear, no instead he spoke these five precious words during his valedictorian speech in front of most of his entire high school. Yes the Captain of the Debate team had just pronounced his love for the head cheerleader who is only vaguely aware of who he is.

Doyle's novel covers the events that spiral out of those words over the course of one glorious night. What follows is...well, what follows is simply to much fun to ruin here. Denis comes of age in a series of events that go from heartwarming to heartpounding to heartbreaking in only a few pages.

The book plays out like a great teen comedy, and is already drawing comparisons to American Graffiti, Dazed & Confused, and Can't Hardly Wait. There's even an "End Crawl" like you'd see just before the closing credits summing up what the future holds for the main cast. The book is screaming for an adaptation and I can't wait to see who picks up the reigns. Personally I'd love to see the sweetly awkward Micheal Cera (Arrested Development, Super Bad) take to the screen as Cooverman, as I think he'd be the perfect fit.

Possibly my favorite part of the book is the beginning of each chapter which starts with a picture of Denis as he looks at that point in the book and a quote from a series of Classic Teen Movies, including Back to the Future, Say Anything, The Breakfast Club, and about 20 others.

The book is so good I tore through it, having picked it up yesterday, I read late into the night and then started back up tonight unable to put it down until I had finished it. Not many books grab me in that way anymore, forcing my to read until it's done, and keeping my invested in the book to the point that I don't want to let go.

I really can't recommend this one enough and I look forward to seeing what Doyle does next.


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