Saturday, March 8, 2014

Paper Towns by John Green

Quentin “Q” Jacobsen has been in love with the “girl next door” for as long as he’s known her. Margo Roth Spiegelman was cool in the way that seemed effortless – tough and unique and beautiful – making her at once intriguing and unattainable. Until the day she shows up at her old friend’s window in the middle of the night, ready for an elaborate revenge adventure that pulls Q back into her world, filled with brilliant pranks and intellectual banter. After the night of his life, Margo disappears, leaving her exasperated parents barely wondering why and setting Q on a search to find her.

With the help of his friends, an unlikely ally, and a highlighted copy of Leaves of Grass, Q begins to search for the girls he’s known since childhood, but never really knew. As the clues become erratic and the evidence becomes troubling, Q begins to realize that the public Margo was a clever front, which begs the question – who was the real Margo?

I definitely enjoyed Paper Towns. Green’s cast of characters are fun, funny, and authentic – the witty back and forth between Q and his friends is thoroughly entertaining. Though written for a YA crowd, this book is extremely approachable for adults, and will probably make you remember (though I can’t say with how much fondness!) your own high school days. It begs the question: how well do we really know the people we love? Paper Towns explores the idea of self-discovery and perception – a perfect concept for teens and adults alike. And John Green’s writing is as engaging as ever, drawing you in to Quentin’s at times desperate search for Margo and (as so often is the case) himself.

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