22 September 2013
Looking for Alaska
Before. Miles "Pudge" Halter's whole existence has been one big nonevent, and his obsession with famous last words has only made him crave the "Great Perhaps" (François Rabelais, poet) even more. He heads off to the sometimes crazy, possibly unstable, and anything-but-boring world of Culver Creek Boarding School, and his life becomes the opposite of safe. Because down the hall is Alaska Young. The gorgeous, clever, funny, sexy, self-destructive, screwed-up, and utterly fascinating Alaska Young, who is an event unto herself. She pulls Pudge into her world, launches him into the Great Perhaps, and steals his heart.
After. Nothing is ever the same.
Guess what, peoples...teenagers have been known to experiment with sex, drugs, and cigarettes. Including upper-middle-class private school teenagers like those depicted in John Green's Looking for Alaska. We visit the school through Miles's eyes and he isn't a cool, sophisticated kid - he's a nerdy, naive, inexperienced teenage boy who is obsessed with deceased poets and the last words uttered by famous people. It's pretty much a given that he'd fall for the manic-pixie-dreamgirl of the book, Alaska. However, things don't quite work out as planned. Alaska is self-destructive as all hell, which is all you need to know. A really well-constructed book; it didn't have the emotional gut-punch that The Fault in Our Stars did (which is good, because I don't know if I could handle that much crying over a book so soon).
I picked this up for Banned Books Week - people like to harsh on the "adult" themes but, hey guess what, teenagers will be teenagers and John Green assumes that they are smart people as opposed to living in a padded room or something.