98 pages 3 hours read

Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

Fiction | Novel | YA | Published in 2012

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Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

  • Genre: Fiction; young adult realistic
  • Originally Published: 2012
  • Reading Level/Interest: Lexile HL380L; grades 7-10
  • Structure/Length: 6 parts; 105 chapters; approx. 384 pages; approx. 7 hours, 30 minutes on audio
  • Protagonist and Central Conflict: In this coming-of-age story, teenagers Ari and Dante, both loners, meet at a swimming pool in El Paso, Texas. As the two become friends and eventually fall in love, Dante teaches Ari to be vulnerable.
  • Potential Sensitivity Issues: Anti-gay bullying

Benjamin Alire Sáenz, Author

  • Bio: Born 1954 in Old Picacho, New Mexico; earned a BA in Humanities and Philosophy at St. Thomas Seminary in 1977; was a priest for several years before returning to school to study writing; won an American Book Award in 1992 for his first poetry collection, Calendar of Dust; was first Hispanic author to win PEN/Faulkner Award (2013); lives and works in El Paso, Texas
  • Other Works: Carry Me Like Water (1995); Last Night I Sang to the Monster (2009); The Inexplicable Logic of My Life (2017); Aristotle and Dante Dive into the Waters of the World (2020)
  • Awards: Printz Honor Book (2013); ALA Stonewall Award (2013); Pura Belpré Award (2013); Time Best YA Book of All Time (2021)

CENTRAL THEMES connected and noted throughout this Teaching Unit: