Everybody has probably that moment where they felt grown up and you didn’t feel like a kid anymore. This is something explored in Highly Illogical Behavior and Grasshopper Jungle through the big idea of coming of age.
Highly Illogical Behavior is a book written by John Corey Whaley which focuses on the main character, Solomon. Solomon has agoraphobia and has been homeschooled for the past 3 years. One day a girl named Lisa comes to write a report about him and they become good friends and he eventually becomes good friends with her boyfriend, Clark. Solomon has never had any friends and he is finally able to connect with Lisa and Clark he is very excited to finally have friends. He goes outside for the first time in 3 years to swim because he had the support of his two friends. Solomon also happens to be gay and eventually develops feelings for Clark which is something that really signifies Solomon’s process of becoming an adult.
Grasshopper Jungle is a book written by Andrew Smith which is about a bunch of big grasshoppers that are trying to take over the world. The main character Austin has a long time girlfriend, but is still very sexually confused due to the feelings that he not only has for his friend, but also for his best friend. This shows the transition of how Austin becomes an adult. Something else that supports this statement is how Austin gets his girlfriend pregnant and we flash forward a couple of years and we Austin with his son, hunting while the grasshoppers are running rampant around the world. Becoming a parent is something that definitely signifies the process of becoming an adult.
Some similarities between the main character of these books is that they are both exploring that sexuality in that Solomon is gay and has just started to develop feelings for somebody. Austin has had a long time girlfriend, but he is still confused sexually due to his additional feelings for his best friend. Despite the fact that these ideas are very similar, they are presented very differently in that Solomon is still not completely sure how he feels, while Austin is a bit more established and knows how he feels. Some differences in these stories is how Austin’s story is a stereotype of a normal teenage boy that goes to high school a and has a best friend and a girlfriend. Solomon is atypical in that he hasn't been outside in about four years so he isn't very caught up to how people are and dynamic during the first meeting Solomon has with other people is very interesting. It is very interesting to see how the differences in their characters play into their respective books.
In Highly Illogical Behavior and Grasshopper Jungle, the main characters are both coming of age and despite the fact that they have a very similar journey, they both have an unique and interesting story. I would recommend this book for anybody that likes a good coming of age story. If you’ve read these books, comment what you think about them!