Title: Paper Towns
Author: John Green
Published: May 2010
Pages: 305 (excluding about author, title page, etc.)
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. She has disappeared. Q soon learns that there are clues in her disappearance …and they are for him. Trailing Margo’s disconnected path across the USA, the closer Q gets, the less sure he is of who he is looking for.
I think Paper Towns is such an amazing book. The characters were so funny and amazing – they were wonderfully developed, and I feel like Green took a long time to make sure the characters were pitch perfect. They were incredibly quirky and original as well. Quentin’s friend, Radar, is glued to editing a wiki, Omnictionary (just the name makes me giggle), and his parents also have the largest collection of Black Santa’s!
I love books like this one, where there is a mystery, and one person (usually the “lost” person) who seems to exude mysteriousness and elegance. Margo IS elegance.
The first few chapters are when Quentin is pulled out of his house by Margo to go out on one of those nights you will always remember, a night that in a good YA book is one that is quintessentially YOUNG. I think it was great to start of the book, and it let you know what Margo was like, and it prepped you for later, when she vanishes.
The rest of the book is mainly Quentin trundling through the end of high school, whilst trying to find clues as to where Margo has vanished to, or whether, where she has actually left or not.
Margo has left before, always seeming to leave clues behind, but this time, Quentin believes she actually left clues behind for him. So he makes it his chore, along with his friends Ben and Radar, to find out where she has gone.
The writing is incredibly good, in this book. It made me both laugh out loud at the banter between Quentin, Ben and Radar, but it also made me really contemplate life and relationships with other people – because during the course of the book, there is snippets of a book called Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman. They find it as a clue, and Quentin reads the poem, Song of Myself, throughout the novel. The way it was weaved into the story made me feel like the poem was written FOR the story, but no.
Rating = 5 Stars
I think this book in a lot of ways, isn’t just a Young Adult novel, I think it is a book which I will read over and over again, because there are qualities and themes in it which really make you think, and the writing is magnificent, and the characters are all so realistic and REAL.
The places in which the characters go to are described so well I really feel like I am there – after reading I felt like I had watched a film!
It is so original and it follows no guidelines, this book simply does what it wants to do. Green writes with such wit and originality, I am finding it hard to describe how amazing this book is.
If you ever get the chance to read Paper Towns, I thoroughly recommend you do.