just as untitled as everything else

Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan and Luna by Julie Anne Peters are obviously different in the tone of the texts and the nature of the struggles each individual character faces because of identifying as a member of the LGBTQ+ community. Boy Meets Boy is different from most texts describing the experiences of LGBTQ+ identifying individuals, in this case bi/gay males. Often with LGBTQ+ literature, such as in Luna, there is a very negative conflict that results from the character’s identity, be it coming out, suffering from discrimination, family implications, or other struggles. Different from Boy Meets Boy, Luna follows the typical script of LGBTQ+ literature, as family tension is at the center of the life of a trans-girl. Specifically in Luna, she (Luna) has a strained relationship with her father: “It happens so fast it’s a blur. Dad clutches Liam’s hand and almost wrenches his arm from the socket. He yanks Liam toward the house. I hear Dad snarl under his breath, ‘We’re going to have a talk, young man’ (Peters, 17).

However, as previously mentioned, the plotline of Boy Meets Boy defies the reality of the LGBTQ+ community in which there is discrimination, oppression, and much more than simple teenage drama. The plotline of Boy Meets Boy aims to normalize homosexuality in the same way that heterosexuality is “normal” by default. Levithan, though, does leave room for the truth as he documents some struggles of LGBTQ+ identifying individuals through Tony’s character as he struggles with the intersection of being gay and living in a community and with parents who are religious and choose not to accept his identity.

While the novels are very different beneath the surface in areas such as author’s purpose, tone, and implications regarding the LGBTQ+ community, they are similar on the basis that they are both LGBTQ+ novels, thus serve a purpose much more than to simply entertain. In reading both of these in conjunction with one another, we were exposed to both sides of the spectrum in terms of discrimination in the LGBTQ+ community. In reading Luna, readers can, in a sense, experience what it is like in most places to be LGBTQ+. In Boy Meets Boy, however, readers can imagine a more perfect society in which homosexuality is, in fact, normal. By reading both of these novels, the reader is able to more fully understand what it is like to be marginalized for one’s identity.

One thought on “just as untitled as everything else”

  1. It is interesting how you notice the similarity between the two texts is the representation of discrimination in two different realities. Though Boy Meets Boy takes place in an ideal society where the queer love is normalized, readers can still learn something real about complex issues that queer teenager has to face. Though Boy Meets Boy narration is not as harsh as Luna, it is not a false sketch of how it feels like to be trans. Even when the majority of people in town are very open-minded toward gay/trans people, there are still always people who do not such as Tony’s parents. I like your point that the justification of the two novels is important for providing readers a holistic view of the LGBTQ+ community.

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