15 July 2015

Anything Could Happen by Will Walton

It’s hard when you fall in love with someone who doesn’t love you back.

It’s even harder when you know that there’s no chance at all that they might.

Knowing that, you’d think Will Walton’s ANYTHING COULD HAPPEN might be depressing: Tretch, the narrator, is in love with his straight best friend, Matt Gooby. There’s no ambiguity, either, no distant hope that Matt might be gay. Tretch knows Matt will never love him that way.

And that part is pretty heartbreaking.

But what lifts up Tretch—and his story—is all the love he does find in his life.

Tretch has great friends, especially Matt, the kind of best friend that’s life-changing. He has a loving brother, Joe, and kind, patient parents (even if they have their troubles). And as Tretch discovers, there’s more love out there for him: the girl at the bookstore with a misplaced crush on him, the girl at the diner that’s falling for Matt, his kooky grandparents, and more.

Tretch’s voice was absolutely compelling. I remember the exact moment when I knew that I had to have my own copy of ANYTHING COULD HAPPEN:

Matt purses his lips and inflates the space beneath his nose with his breath. Then he lets it go.

It’s a little observation, but it was so true to life. I do the same thing!

There were lots of other great moments, even if they were painfully awkward, like the scene where Tretch is in Matt’s room when Matt gets ready for a shower, giving Tretch an eyeful (his internal monologue was utter perfection).

ANYTHING COULD HAPPEN is a story of unrequited love, but that doesn’t mean it has an unhappy ending. There is more than one kind of love. And as Tretch learns, it’s all around us, if we know how to find it.