Who is the real Margo? 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. She has disappeared. Q soon learns that there are clues in her disappearance …and they are for him. Trailing Margo’s disconnected path across the USA, the closer Q gets, the less sure he is of who he is looking for.
I managed to exist for a lot of years as a geek without knowing about the Nerdfighters, but thankfully the lovely Clover from Fluttering Butterflies introduced me to them and I’ve been subscribed to their YouTube channel ever since. It was only a few weeks later that I realised that I had John Green’s book Paper Towns on my Kindle waiting for my attention, based on how much I was enjoying his vlogs I had high expectations for the book.
I spent most of the time reading the book with a huge grin on my face, I’m sure this may have been a little alarming for my fellow train passengers! There is so much to enjoy in this book, I think it’s the most fun I’ve had reading a book for some time.
I loved the way that as the reader I was completely caught up in Q’s telling of the story. I found that like him I was a little confused with what was happening to start with, but then as everything came clear with what Margo wants I shared in his delight with events. I think this worked really well because it meant that when Margo disappeared I really cared about what had happened to her and was invested in finding out how the book was going to play out.
The friendship between Q, Ben and Radar was brilliant, there is a scene when they’re playing computer games that made me put my Kindle down for a few minutes until I’d stopped laughing. The road trip that they end up undertaking is one of the funniest things I’ve read, and what’s so good is that it’s written in such a way that you almost feel like you’re in the minivan with them.
Whilst this book is brilliant, and funny it’s clever too. Green brings in the poetry of Walt Whitman, and the concept of paper towns, and makes them seamless parts of the plot. I learned about paper towns in one of my Archives lectures last year, I wish I’d read this book before that lecture as I would have had quite a bit to say on the topic!
I had high hopes for this book and it lived up to them all. I loved the way the book was written, I could almost hear John Green reading it. I’m already looking forward to reading his other books, I feel pretty confidant there’s so much more fun waiting for me.
Paper Towns is published in paperback by Bloomsbury in the UK priced £6.99