Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Paper Towns by John Green

Margo Roth Spiegelman and Quentin were nine years old when they found a dead body in the park. Margo was nine when she knew her strings were broken, but Quentin didn’t know it yet…
Nine years later, both of them are finishing their senior year in high school. Margo’s circle of friends include Lacy, Jace, and Becca – the beautiful people. Quentin’s best friends are Ben, who is trolling freshmen for a prom date, and Radar, who is hooked on his website, Omnictionary
Margo is notorious for pulling pranks and being an enigma. Not only has she orchestrated toilet papering 200 homes without any incident, but she also loves to leave home – leaving only clues as to where she went. When she took off for Mississippi, her clue was found in a bowl of alphabet soup. Quentin is on the steady track – good grades, good college, keeping his head low. They spin in opposite directions and haven’t really talked since the “incident” until Margo crawls into Ben’s room one night.
Things change the night Margo entices Quentin into a game of revenge and living on the edge. There is no breaking and entering, but revenge does include three whole catfish, Vaseline, tulips, and Mountain Dew, to name a few. That night Margo brings up paper towns – fictional places that are two-dimensional and without reality. Paper people, paper houses…Margo wants three dimensions and she is tired of living surrounded by those who can’t see what she does.
After the night of revenge, Margo doesn’t show up for school the next day, and people don’t seem to mind (typical Margo) but when it becomes a week, Q knows something is wrong. Margo is missing and he has made it a point to find her following clues only Margo knows how to create. For Margo, the fun isn’t in the trip, it’s in the planning. As Q delves into the clues, he begins to worry – is she alive or dead? When he finds her, will it be too late and the strings that hold Margo will be irrevocably cut? Will she lose herself in a paper town or pseudovision like the man they found nine years ago?
If a cover could tell a thousand words, Paper Towns’s cover will. John Green has gone from the dark side (Looking for Alaska) to the light side (Abundance of Katherines) and this book is a perfect melding both. While it begins light and funny, it takes a turn toward the dark, and the reader will continuously be laughing at Q’s and friends antics while sitting on the edge of the seat waiting to find out what happened to Margo. This is a definite page-turner that will involve the reader from beginning to end. Recommended


Infomaniac said...

I love your reviews. You can "sell" any book. This one sounds as though it will appeal to my readers.

Anonymous said...

The mystery of Margo takes a virtual twist, beginning September 1st!