23 December 2008

Looking For Alaska - John Green - Aug 08

This is the first novel by John Green. He is a writer of young adult fiction and is a co-founder of the whole Brotherhood 2.0 vlogs and the nerdfighter "movement" on You Tube,

This coming-of-age novel is about a group of less than popular kids at a private school in Alabama. The main character, Miles, likes to memorize the last words of people. They keep coming up throughout the novel. He, and many others, are intrigued, if not in love, with a girl named Alaska Young. Miles is in search of what Francois Rabelais called "the Great Perhaps". Rabelais' last words were "I go to seek the Great Perhaps."
The book is divided up into chapters labeled "before" and "after" the major tragic event that the story hinges upon. It is an interesting way to give it all a sense of time passing.

The story is very interesting and the characters make you want to know more about them. Something I really liked about this book is that it does not have a feel good happy ending. All the characters learn to deal with tragedy on their own terms. It does not culminate all neatly wrapped in some fake "everyone will be OK" ending.

I enjoyed the book. I am not sure if I enjoyed it because it is a really good book, though I think it is, or if it is because I know who the author is. :-)
The word is that this will book will be made into a motion picture by Paramount. The screenplay is being worked on. The title will be changed to "Famous Last Words". I suggest you read the book now, before the movie ruins the story for you. They usually do.
Read the book and THEN go to the movie. That is my strategy.
This one blurb keeps coming up in every review of this book I have found...so I should probably include it here. "The spirit of Holden Caulfield lives on. -- Kliatt"
This book won the 2006 Michael L. Printz Award presented by the American Library Association.

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