Nick, written by Levithan, and Norah, written by Cohn, meet one night after Nick’s band plays in a New York City club. And by “meet” I mean they started making out, because Nick needed a pretend girlfriend for five minutes to help him avoid his ex, Tris. Things are not that simple of course. Norah realizes she sort of knows Nick since she is friends with Tris and listened to the mix tapes that Nick made for her. Thus begins a night where Nick and Norah deal with various issues of the past so they can begin a relationship with each other in the present. Things begin a bit rocky, but the authors invite readers to root for the nice guy and the snarky, but well meaning girl.
The writing, however, overshadows any plot devices. Nick and Norah’s dialog is quick and smart. Cursing is an art form and if I could curse as well as they do, I’d do it a lot more. Cohn and Levithan clearly paint the backdrop of the city that the young hipsters use to spend their night.
There was something about this book that bugged me, though it was hard to figure out what it was. The authors give the novel an appreciated edge, but I seemed to catch an elitist and almost condescending bent to the novel. At times the book also seems to drag a little, since the conclusion is obvious from the beginning. Nevertheless, the authors have put together a good read that should appeal to both guys and girls.