Looking for Alaska by John Green

Miles ‘Pudge’ Halter is tired of his life at home; it’s uneventful and lonely. As someone who memorizes people’s last words, he’s looking for something more from life; the Great Perhaps. So he decides to enrol in Culver Creek Boarding School to shake up his life. There he finds friends, love and more adventure than he can handle – by the name of Alaska, the beautiful yet crazy girl who lives down the hall.

From the back of the book: (about Alaska) She pulls Pudge into her world, launches him into the Great Perhaps, and steals his heart. After, nothing is ever the same.

I so deeply loved this book. Green did an amazing job of creating radiant and magnetic characters. Readers will enjoy the duality of Pudge’s dry whit with Alaska’s desperate brokenness. Where he is awkward and innocent she is wild and crazy. The story itself was incredibly well written, with the climax being at the middle of the book. I was so grateful for this as it gave a sense of fullness to Pudge’s story. Green’s incredibly poignant use of language solidifies the excellence of this novel; creating a story that is both sweet and heartbreaking. You will laugh and you will most definitely cry. Of all the YA novels I’ve read up to this point, this one is the most highly recommended. It was simply wonderful.

My favourite quote from the book…bare with me it’s long.

“Just like that. From a hundred miles an hour to asleep in a nanosecond. I wanted so badly to lie down next to her on the couch, to wrap my arms around her and sleep. Not fuck, like in those movies. Not even have sex. Just sleep together, in the most innocent sense of the phrase. But I lacked courage and she had a boyfriend and I was gawky and she was gorgeous and I was hopelessly boring and she was endlessly fascinating. So I walked back to my room and collapsed on the bottom bunk, thinking that if people were rain, I was drizzle and she was a hurricane. “

You might enjoy Looking for Alaska if you like books with: a male voice, poignant observations on life, strong characters, a slower paced plot, realistic storylines rather than fantasy or science fiction, awkward and candid humour

Also by John Green: An Abundance of Katherines, Will Grayson; Will Grayson, Paper Towns

If you liked Looking for Alaska you might also enjoy: The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie, The Perks of Bing a Walflower by Stephen Chbosky, Nick and Norah’s Infinate Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan, The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl by Barry Lyga,

Additional Info: won the Michael L Printz Award. Also, Paramount has the rights to the movie and Josh Schwartz (think O.C) will write the screenplay and direct. It has been renamed ‘famous last words’ and is expected to be released 2013.

Author website: http://www.sparksflyup.com/

Rating: W4/4   C4/4   P4/4   O3/4   PP3/4   CR3/4

Grade: S (sex, language, drinking, smoking)

Covers

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