Hey, teachers and librarians, are John Green’s books read by girls, boys, or both? I really want to know.
If you click on the title above, you’ll go to a review at Teenreads.com. You won’t get one here.
If you had handed me this book with the author’s name removed, I believe I could have guessed it was written by John Green. I suppose such a comment could be seen as good (a distinct style) or bad (repetitive or in a rut), but in this case, I think it’s good. What I notice and what I like are John’s sharply accurate but unique details regarding his teen characters. They surprise me, but I can believe them–and you know my threshold for Unbelievable is pretty low. For instance, Margo, the Wild Girl sought by the MC, could easily have slipped over into Unbelievable with her elaborate pranks, but John keeps her real. She’s clever, she’s extreme, she’s a daredevil, she’s independent, and she surprises me, but she’s believable.
I also like that the MC’s parents are good guys who trust their son. Sure, he abuses that trust a little, but that’s totally believable, don’t you think?
And then there’s the idea of paper towns–towns that only exist on paper–and how that idea leads to the idea of paper people, something disenfranchised teens contemplate all the time, I think. Nice connection! I get the impression this whole book began with John’s discovery of and curiosity about paper towns. I can imagine how the whole thing grew from there, cultivated in the John Green story style.
Finally, I just like John Green. He’s a little goofy. He’s a little nerdy. He’s a lot of fun. I enjoy his blog.
Your turn. What are you reading?