by John Green
Published Sept, 2009
Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs back 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 of the girl he thought he knew.
Photo and Summary from Goodreads.com
So based on the summary I most definitely did not want to read this for some reason. The whole Margo being a mystery thing sort of turned me off– I kind of thought it would step into paranormal or wild insane plot territory. I’m glad I threw away my judgments because it ended up being ffaaabbbulous.
I like books to have layers so you can read the same story and get something different from it. This is exactly how this book is!
Here’s what you have:
1. The basic plot– it’s all about a boy liking a girl and having to solve a mystery to get to her. The mystery that is of Margo. Of course there are side adventures on the way, which include getting to know Quentin’s best friends and his “enemies”. The characters are all likable and funny and actually made me laugh out loud, which I don’t often do in books.
2. There’s this great line one of the characters says at one point: “What a treacherous thing it is to believe that a person is more than a person.” In the end, every single of us is just that– a person with all of our downfalls and… up falls(?). Nothing more, nothing less. Something that I have often found evident in my own life is I tend to focus too much on who I think people are rather than who they really are. This book deals with realizing the constraints and capabilities of the people we know and responding to that.
3. What I also found interesting is John Green actually addresses carpe diem in this. One of the characters goes on a spiel about living for today saying, “Did you know that for pretty much the entire history of the human species, the average life span was less than thirty years? You could count on ten years or so of real adulthood, right? There was no planning for retirement. There was no planning for a career. There was no planning. No time for planning. No time for the future….. And now life has become the future. Every moment of your life is lived for the future.” Personally, I always love “live in the moment” type things even if they tend to get a little corny (and props to J. Green, he didn’t even come close to corniness). But anyway, I’ve never took the time to think realistically about this– what would that truly and completely look like if you just lived for today? Paper Towns gave me a unique opportunity to see my own reaction at seeing carpe diem being lived out.
4. There are a lot of interesting thoughts about some concepts in here that I thought were worthwhile to read– most of them being literary. One of them being how important it is to chose your metaphors for life 9and other things) and what that metaphor really says. I like that J. Green discussed this among other literary things, because I feel like it gave me a good hint as to how I could read the story to see what he’s truly saying.
5. Now this *may* be a stretch, but this book got me thinking about obsession and love. When is obsession a good thing? When is it a bad thing? And where does love tie in to obsession? It’s just an interesting pair of sunglasses to put on while you read the book.
Ultimate Review: I lllliiikkkkeeedddd it. Enough to want to elongate all of my words. I am officially jumping on the John Green train!
Random fact: Reading this book TOTALLY helped me win a Final Jeopardy question on Jeopardy Wii. That’s how good this book is. Just saying.