Although I have unfortunately and shamelessly neglected this blog for a couple of months, I haven't neglected the world of literature so I do have plenty of books to catch up on to review!
Starting with one that I surprisingly, thoroughly enjoyed; Paper Towns.
I have no misunderstanding or am I unappreciative of the fine works of John Green's spectacular writing style, however at times I thought his stories to be a bit overrated. I was included in the hype of The Fault In Our Stars book and then the exciting build up to the film, but looking back I can't say it was my favourite book, nor it even being my favourite contemporary book. Nonetheless it was still an emotional yet enjoyable book to read. I then went on to buying and reading Looking For Alaska and was utterly disappointed and underwhelmed. I found the story to be uneventful and I didn't have any strong emotions towards the characters. Therefore, my initial thought was - is TFIOS John Green's only really good book?
I thought I had lost faith in his books. I do want to now just say I don't think his books are bad. Far from it. John Green has an incredibly talent to use words so well and eloquently when describing everyday life: using metaphorical explanations and techniques when describing that make us laugh and cry. I just had high expectations for LfA and I just didn't like it as much as I wanted to.
I didn't think I would read Paper Towns as Charlotte loved LfA and enjoyed that more than Paper Towns. However I love film, so thought it only be right to read the book before the film came out. And my repetitive thoughts when reading every page up until the last was that I love it.
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. But Q soon learns that there are clues—and they're for him. Urged down a disconnected path, the closer he gets, the less Q sees the girl he thought he knew...
Contemporary novels have never been my favourite, so for one to spark something in me is special. Paper Towns did just that. I think the main pure enjoyment I got from this book was that I found it so funny. The effortless and witty humour of John Green's evident opinion on perhaps unique but totally relatable teenage protagonists made me fall in love with them. All of them. This had my laughing out loud at the fast paced dialogue between the three boys: Quentin, Ben and Radar. I think the main love I instantly had for the characters (particularly the boys) was that I familiarised them with my own friends who can be described as geeky, kind, funny and weird.
The chapters featuring around the relationship between Quentin and Margo I sped through as it was so easy to just be fascinated in their infatuation with one another. But by far my favourite part of the book (and the majority of it) is when the team stick together and try and find the mysterious Margo.
For me, the book is so strongly based around the theme of friendship more than anything which is why I respected and adored it so much. I also learnt from it. I sometimes find with friendships that I can be disappointed with how someone deals with something or treats me. However this book had me understanding that people's individuality and flaws makes them who they are, and I think this helped me reflect and have a better understanding and forgiving for people and their actions.
My favourite quote from the book -
My favourite quote from the book -
“Isn't it also that on some fundamental level we find it difficult to understand that other people are human beings in the same way that we are? We idealize them as gods or dismiss them as animals.”
Overall, I loved this book. The books I usually read are often filled with despair and tragedy, which I find interesting and gripping. Although, occasionally I want to read a book that just fills me with happiness and satisfaction and this book (much like Fangirl) accomplished that, so I am therefore rating Paper Towns 8/10 and would personally definitely recommend and class as one of my favourite contemporary novels. I also am very excited to see this book's adaptation and come to life on the screen later this month.