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I Love You, Beth Cooper (P.S.)by Larry Doyle
Synopses & Reviews
Denis Cooverman wanted to say something really important in his high school graduation speech. So, in front of his 512 classmates and their 3,000 relatives, he announced: "I love you, Beth Cooper."
It would have been such a sweet, romantic moment. Except that Beth, the head cheerleader, has only the vaguest idea who Denis is. And Denis, the captain of the debate team, is so far out of her league he is barely even the same species. And then there's Kevin, Beth's remarkably large boyfriend, who's in town on furlough from the United States Army. Complications ensue.
"Former TV writer and magazine editor Doyle frenetically chronicles in his debut a long night of goofy teenage antics. After concluding he has nothing to lose, geekazoid valedictorian Denis Cooverman declares, during his graduation speech, his love for Beth Cooper, the way hot chief cheerleader. He is amazed to discover Beth is not completely repulsed by his feelings for her, although her army boyfriend, Kevin, is enraged. Beth, implausibly, later shows up at Denis's graduation party with two interchangeable sidekicks, Cammy and Treece. The party comprises exactly two guests, Denis (aka 'The Coove') and his possibly gay best friend, Rich. Once Denis and Rich recover from the shock of being in the presence of pretty girls, they attempt to party, but the awkward celebration is cut short when Kevin arrives with his bruiser friends. Denis and Co. make their first of what will be several escapes, the circumstances of each providing Denis with evidence that Beth isn't the flawless goddess he'd imagined her to be. Overly rapid pacing, unlikely turns of events and quirky, funny dialogue reveal Doyle's TV roots (he has written for The Simpsons and Beavis and Butt-head). Doyle wrings from his typecast crew just enough teenage agony and ecstasy to keep readers interested." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"[An] instant classic, right up there with great end-of-school landmarks like American Graffiti and Dazed and Confused." Tom Perrotta, bestselling author of Little Children
"In the flagrantly funny I Love You, Beth Cooper...Larry Doyle gives the coming-of-age novel a swirly." Vanity Fair
"If this book doesn't make you laugh out loud, something is wrong with you." Dave Barry
"Larry Doyle has created a perfect literary hot fudge sundae: sweet, naughty, delicious, irresistible." Kurt Anderson, author of Heyday
"Larry Doyle gives a 21st-century gloss to this familiar tale....
"Fresh, sweet, seriously funny." Newsweek
"[A] quick, funny book with a protagonist readers can root for even as they groan at his geekiness." School Library Journal
"[T]his side-splitting novel of adolescence is a classic teen movie waiting to be made." Entertainment Weekly
Instead of a typical graduation speech, Denis Cooverman stands up in front of his classmates and professes his love for the most popular girl in school. Complications ensue, and Denis comes of age overnight.
In the tradition ofPersepolisandAmerican Born Chinese, a wise and funny high school heroine comes of age.
Tina M., sophomore, is a wry and endearing observer of the cliques and mores of Yarborough Academy. (andldquo;The name makes it sound fancier than all the public schools in the area. Youandrsquo;d really think the Prince of Wales attended.andrdquo;) And of the foibles of her Southern California intellectual Indian family. (andldquo;Just so you know, my parents have never tried to lock me into a child marriage.andrdquo;) Sheandrsquo;s on a first-name basis with Jean-Paul Sartre, the result of an English honors class assignment to keep an andldquo;existential diary.andrdquo;
Keshni Kashyapandrsquo;s smart and funny graphic novel packs in (existential) high school dramaandmdash;from Tinaandrsquo;s getting dumped by her smart-girl ally to a kiss on the mouth (Tinaandrsquo;s mouth, but nottechnicallyher first kiss) from a cute skateboarder, Neil Strumminger. And it memorably answers the pressing question: Can an English honors assignment be one fifteen-year-old girlandrsquo;s path to enlightenment?
The story of a high school heroine--funny, wise, and reminiscent of Marjane Satrapi--negotiating a trying spring semester at her southern California prep school
Tina M., sophomore, is a wry and endearing observer of the cliques and mores of Yarborough Academy ("The name makes it sound fancier than all the public schools in the area. You'd really think the Prince of Wales attended"). And of the foibles of her intellectual Indian family ("Just so you know, my parents have never tried to lock me into a child marriage"). She's on a first-name basis with Jean-Paul Sartre, the result of an English honors class assignment to keep an "existential diary."
The plot thickens as Tina is dumped by her best friend and smart-girl ally, forcing her to embark on a life of eating school lunch (existentially) alone during the week, and of weekends being dragged to family parties at various new-money chalets in LA's Indian enclaves. Until the lead in the school play goes to Tina, among other astonishing events.
Is a kiss on the mouth--Tina's mouth, but not technically her first kiss--from cute skateboarder Neil Strumminger be the meaning of existence? Can an English honors assignment be one fifteen-year-old girl's path to enlightenment?
About the Author
Larry Doyle, a former writer for The Simpsons, works in showbiz and writes funny things for The New Yorker. He lives outside Baltimore with his wife, Becky, and their three children.
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