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Naomi and Ely's No-Kiss List

by Rachel  Cohn and David Levithan

Published by Alfred A. Knopf, 2007
230 pages
ISBN: 9780375844409

Ages 14 and older

Naomi and Ely are older teens, living on the cutting edge of cool in Manhattan. They are both a year out of high school, attending NYU, and they’ve been best friends all their lives, having grown up in the same apartment building. Naomi is deeply and hopelessly in love with Ely, and always has been. She’s always pictured that they would some day grow up and get married, and she’s been saving herself for him, even though she continues to date other boys as she bides her time. But Ely is gay and has never hidden it. In fact, Naomi and Ely have drawn up a “no kiss list” of boys they like who are off-limits to both of them, in order to preserve their friendship. It never occurred to either of them to put Naomi’s boyfriend, Bruce the Second, on the list, because it never occurred to either of them that Ely and Bruce would fall in love. But it’s not Ely’s relationship with Bruce that deeply pains Naomi, it is her sudden inability to deny the truth Ely thought was obvious all along: he will never fall in love with her. Told from multiple points of view, the funny, fast-paced chapters explore Naomi and Ely’s friendship and falling out, with plenty of pop-culture references, club scenes, and sardonic observations about life in general. But underneath the humor is a serious story about the nature of romantic love and the ability of a friendship to endure.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

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