Paper Towns by John Green is the second book I’ve read written by him. The previous, Fault in our Stars was unimpressive to me. Though this book impresses me than the previous one in some ways but there is a unacceptable vibe about this book. I’ll start with John Green, he is a good writer there is no doubt, his skill of writing is a bit ordinary but witty and humorous. The plot and scenes he challenges himself to write are not very realistic but hey, after all this what fiction is. It’s a lie. So there is no point in arguing over the that fact as many people believe he should write more realistic but being a fictitious writer he can write anything he wants. Harry Potter is not realistic so why should he?
The plot in general is structural. Quite interesting in the starting. Especially the first part of the book is a high point. It’s a story which focuses on two teenagers who are to be pass out from their high school. Margot Roth Spiegelman an ordinary person, someone you would come across everyday, especially when we were in our high schools we have came across these kind of people, she is beautiful, she is famous in school, has a rich boyfriend, however on the other hand, Quentin Jacobsen is also a ordinary boy and very ordinary in comparison to Margo, has best two best buddies, Ben and ‘Radar’ who are his comfort zone. Paper Towns takes place in a subdivision of Orlando, Florida called Jefferson Park. The book is written in first person and narrated by Quentin or ‘Q’. John Green seems very fluent in writing as first person. Quentin has known Margot since they were young and when they were best friends. He put up with the fact that they weren’t friends anymore, until Margot decided to drag him into the madness of her midnight revenge. So, Quentin took on a detective’s perspective to find out why Margot vanished unexpectedly.
This book certainly made me think about how people can react to things differently. It showed how similar yet different everybody is. It surprised me to know that some people take the time to think hard about what’s going to happen in the future, and worry about it so much that they nearly lose their mind (as I sometime do). It was John Green’s writing that kept me reading it till the end. But the plot was very much stretched. Especially, a few chapters in part two and a few from last one. There wasn’t any necessity though. The book could have ended in just 260 pages instead of 305 pages. That’s what I felt after reading it.
The ending will come out as a surprise as it came to me. It is not a terrible ending but not a memorable one also. Though I quite agree with the character’s feeling towards the end. By the point he stands, is quite genuine and logical. But then again, the book should not have been that long.
The characterization in the book is imbalanced and not strong. But John Green should be given credit for commanding the other characters especially, Ben and Radar, dynamically. My favorite part from the book is when Quentin struggles in his friendship with his friend Ben and then their mutual friend makes him realize how people are different from each other and we should understand them accordingly. It make me think, we judge a bunch of people by the whole bunch and not individually. I mean why? A bunch of people is not similar to a bunch of grapes.
This is a good book. But it struggles in between. I read it in one go.
2.5/5 from me.