A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Parents could use this book to talk about how well books translate to movies. See our "Families Can Talk About" section for more ideas to sharpen kids' critical thinking skills.
Through Nick and Norah's story readers learn that bad stuff happens to people -- even in love. But while love can hurt, it's worth it, especially when you find someone you really connect with.
Positive Role Models
Not every teen will relate to the lives these protagonists lead -- but they will connect with their search for themselves, and their obvious vulnerability. And they will root for them to realize how perfect they are for one another.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some pretty passionate kissing and groping between straight and gay characters, a trip to a strip club, plus talk of other sexual experiences.
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Be prepared for constant swearing, including the f-word, the b-word, and some pretty creative combinations.
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Products & Purchases
Krispy Kremes, Oreos, McDonald's, Chuck Taylors, Xbox, and more. Plus, Nick drives a Yugo.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Nick and Norah order virgin cocktails, but Norah's best friend is always drunk, and there are other references to drugs like marijuana and Ecstasy.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that there is constant swearing, including the f-word, the b-word, and some pretty creative combinations. Nick and Norah order virgin cocktails, but Norah's best friend is always drunk, and there are other references to drugs like marijuana and Ecstasy. The characters also mention Krispy Kremes, Oreos, McDonald's, Chuck Taylors, Xbox, and more. There is some pretty passionate kissing and groping between straight and gay characters, plus talk of other sexual experiences. In the end, this is a story about teens who are able to get past their past hurts and trust the instant connection that just may be true love.
Is It Any Good?
You can see why this book would make such a fun movie: It's got two well-defined characters, fast-paced dialogue, plenty of drama, plus a punk NYC backdrop. Having the book take place in one night adds fun energy to the story -- as does having the chapters alternate between Nick and Norah. Chapters often end with a mini-cliffhanger, with the other protagonist swooping in to offer a new perspective -- and the details of their next adventure.
Readers may not always relate to the lives of these two Jersey teens. Norah, for example, the daughter of a wealthy music exec, says "I could be scoring weed in Tompkins Square Park right now, on my way to a bondage bar on Avenue D, and my parents would only applaud." And at some point in their long night together, Nick and Norah end up at "this place where strippers dressed like nuns and did this tease to 'Climb Every Mountain.'" But, they will have an easy time relating to these two characters who are obviously meant to be together, if they can get past their own heartbreaks and take that leap. Which you know they will, eventually -- sometime in the wee hours of the morning. Romantic teens will likely be willing to stay up all night reading just to see them jump.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
Suggest an Update
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate