BOOK REVIEW: Paper Towns By John Green
I, like most of the Her.ie crew, was a major fan of The Fault In Our Stars by John Green so I immediately had to pick up Paper Towns afterwards.
Told from the point of view of teenager Quentin Jacobson (Q), the story centres around his love for neighbour Margo Roth Spiegelman and the rollercoaster of a ride that follows as a result.
Their action-packed late night jaunt together is followed by Margo’s disappearance which kicks off a search that takes both Q and the reader on a meandering treasure hunt that stomps through the paper town of their suburb near Orlando, Florida, as he tries to unravel and decipher the clues that Margo has left behind.
Not the usual run-of-the-mill love story, the book does drag in places, but pulls you back into the narrative through the relationships and connections between the characters which intrigue and at most parts, delight.
A true coming-of-age book, Q soon realizes he doesn’t really know the real Margo and though there are quite a few echoes of Looking For Alaska (another Green novel), I have to say my patience paid off in the end.
Despite some readers stating that the ending is an anti-climax, for me, it actually reflects the reality of life as a teen: taking that stepping stone from school to college and the dawning of the somewhat upsetting knowledge that life isn’t always going to be straightforward.
We see the boy becoming the man, the innocence being replaced with an awakening to reality and the stark realisation that life doesn’t always work out the way you want it to… and maybe that’s not such a bad thing after all.