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Customer Review

180 of 213 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read for the OAs as well as the YAs..., October 19, 2009
This review is from: Paper Towns (Paperback)
I know this is a YA book, but as a reader who is twice as old as Quentin (okay I lie- I'm about six years older even than that!), I thought it was one of my best reads in a long while. Having been a band nerd and heavily involved in speech and drama, I most definitely had close friends who were Quentins, Bens, or Radars, and I can think of more than one Margo in my high school (and each of them was about ten tiers higher in the caste system than I, so I cannot say we were close friends).

This past week I went to a conference in Phoenix and got stuck in the Albuquerque airport for a couple of hours on my way there. I saw Paper Towns most unattainably sitting on the top shelf out of arms reach in the airport bookstore. Thankfully a kind, tall stranger retrieved it for me, and I am so glad he did, because getting to know Quentin a little better at the end of each conference day was more fun than the alternative activity- which would have been getting buzzed in the fancy hotel bar paying $10 per drink.

On my return flight I was sitting next to a guy who made this repulsive sound every two to three minutes that made me think he was trying to suck his sinuses down his throat (I can only assure you that reading about this sound is much less nauseating than listening to it). When I had about twenty pages left, I decided the finale was too special to read in an environment of a full flight on a Sunday evening sitting next to Phlegm-Man, so I saved it until I got home. No spoilers, but I like how John Green wrapped it up; although I was swimming in metaphors (mainly about grass and cracks-- not what you're thinking).

I hope that when they make this into a movie that they don't add extra scenes about Margo that aren't in the book to make the movie more about her than the book is (and this book really needs to be made into a movie). In my life the Quentins, Bens, Radars, and Laceys are more important to me than the Margos; although I understand why Quentin cared about her. I still care about the Margos, but despite what Whitman says, I can't feel like I am a part of the same root system with them. That window/mirror statement says more about me than them (just read the book, and this won't sound so schizo). Yet at the same time, even though I believe in a life rightly lived and even though I believe the future deserves our faith, there are glimpses through cracks into Margo that make me identify with her.

This book was good enough that I am still "thinking in John Green". A little John Green narrator is sitting on my shoulder saying thinks like "asshat". The book was good enough that even though I have a big presentation at work on Friday, and even though my annual credentialing packet that was due last week sits unfinished on my desk, and even though I should be reviewing all the stuff I learned at my conference, I am writing a book review on Amazon (and I haven't done a review in five years). I am the mom to three elementary school boys, and I am doing what I can to prevent them from becoming a Chuck Parson- which would be highly unlikely. The nerd gene that they got from their mom is quite dominant (and as much as I have tried in my life to reverse that part of my genetics- there is no gene therapy for nerdfightosis). I'm pretty sure they're nerds (albeit of the "cool" variety)... and that makes me smile.
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Showing 1-9 of 9 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 13, 2013 7:19:55 PM PDT
Lisa Evans says:
I love your review. :)

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 25, 2013 6:08:30 PM PDT
Thank you! I really enjoyed the book!

Posted on Jul 17, 2013 1:12:06 PM PDT
D. E. Riska says:
Yes...I really love the mirror and window metaphors! And the world is full of deeply intelligent teens most of whom are nerds. I think Green creates great male characters..not all that common among ya authors (Crutcher does too).

Posted on Jan 2, 2014 4:50:01 AM PST
WV Dot says:
Bodily sounds make my blood pressure boil and cause me to have homicidal tendencies. I've refrained thus far in life, however, I can't make any promises should I wind up on a airplane with someone sucking their sinuses down their throat. Parents who don't teach their children NOT to make any sort of unnecessary bodily sounds especially ones they make a habit have failed at life.

On a side note, I'm on chapter 6 and it's pretty good so far.

Posted on Jan 19, 2014 8:35:19 AM PST
T. C. Morgan says:
I was considering buying this book until I read your review. After your paragraph talking about the guy you sat next to on your flight, there was nothing left to consider. I added it to my cart without hesitation. Great review!

Posted on Jan 3, 2015 10:04:45 PM PST
Cathy B. says:
What a great review! I looked at this book on Amazon after seeing it was being made into a movie - so that wish of yours is fulfilled. You also convinced me to buy this book. Thanks!

Posted on Jul 25, 2015 9:55:01 PM PDT
Tiggaluv2 says:
Your review was such a delight reading, thank you for it.
Plus it made me decide to get off the fence and add this to my Kindle collection ^_^ I will be reading this before I go watch the movie.

Posted on Aug 4, 2015 9:03:55 AM PDT
Sam says:
Wonderful review Cathy!

Posted on Aug 28, 2015 10:51:50 PM PDT
I just saw this book in a store. I was thrilled to see that the main character's name is Quentin and he goes by "Q." My Son is Quentin (he's only 8,) and we also call him Q. I definitely want to read this book. Amazon has a better price than Walmart.
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