Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Paper Towns by John Green

Synopsis: Who is the real Margo? Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs into his life--dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge--he follows. After their all-nighter ends, and a new day breaks, Q arrives at school to discover that Margo, always an enigma, has now become a mystery. But Q soon learns that there are clues--and they're for him. Urged down a disconnected path, the closer he gets, the less Q sees the girl he thought he knew....


I read this book awhile ago, like, last year awhile ago. And I just pulled it off my shelf and thought, "Huh. This would be fun to blog about" because a) this is an amazing book and b) I'm currently reading a 454 page book that's going to take me awhile to finish, so...I don't have many books to blog about.

John Green is going down as one of my all-time favorite authors. His writing is funny, realistic, and it goes deeper than just the story. For instance, not only does he promote Margo's theory of "paper towns" with Margo herself, but he also ponders the question, "Is your town made of paper? Are you a paper person?" And even though this book was funny and awesome, it did have some more serious undertones.

Quentin is so funny. He's your average, teenage guy with average, teenage guy problems (although, I really wouldn't know, considering I am not a guy). His parents are pretty laid back and I thought that Green really focused on Q's problems with friends and Margo much more than his family problems. Quentin takes us back to when he was younger and growing up with Margo and how it all changed. He tells stories about Margo in childhood and how his admiration of her slowly grew throughout the years. I thought Quentin was a really well-written character because Green did look into his past and made him seem real, but didn't get too heavy on the details of his life. Like his parents; didn't really go there. His friends are oh-so-funny too, and I have to say, Ben and Radar (his friends) had a tie for one of my favorite side characters in this book.

Green doesn't really totally touch down on Margo, but he does have little sweeps. The first part of the book is the only really connection with Margo until the end, when she comes up again. Margo is a really static character throughout the book and I really didn't like the way Green ended this one. I loved her clues, thought, and it was really interesting to see where Margo led Q, Ben, and Radar and meeting all the people she knew along the way. The beginning was interesting, especially the all-nighter with Q. But in the middle, when she disappears, it got less interesting. Then it picked up again towards the end on their road trip (hint hint).

Over all, I thought this was really sweet book. I loved Q's perspective of the whole thing, starting with Margo and ending with his own life. Ben was hilarious and Radar was equally awesome. Margo wasn't all that cool to me. I thought she was somewhat selfish in the way she didn't really care about the people she left behind. I did not like the ending at all. I thought it left too much open for a single novel. I must caution, though, that they do swear a lot in this book, although it wasn't drowning in it. Mostly the swearing came from Ben.

The Cover: Goodness this has to be one of my most favorite covers. I love the push pin and how it stuck to a map, which really is in the book. It's simple but it also give you this "paper towns" feel, using the map and all. Over all, very nice. Simplistic and to the point.

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