Paper Towns: A Worthy Read that Doesn’t Live up to Fault in our Stars (John Green)

3.5 out of 5 stars

 

If I compare it to other YA I’ve read, I would probably give it 4 out of 5 stars… however, reading it right after I read (and loved, despite its pretentious bits) The Fault in our Stars… it was a bit of a disappointment.

Pros:
1. Green seems to have an eerily excellent grasp on the inner monologue of smart, teenage boys. These aren’t your super-jocks or any-other-cliche, but your mostly-drawing-within-the-lines guy who, in high school, often isn’t quite the outcast, nor does he really fit-in. Green’s captured this voice very, very well, and it’s a convincing narrative.

2. Though internal monologue/voice is one of the strengths of this book, the action in here is convincing. Most of the pranks are well-executed but (mostly) believable.

3. Nice, rounded out, cast of side characters who (mostly) get to have a moment where they prove to be multidimensional.

4. Well-written.

Cons:
1.The main girl… and really many of the female characters in this book feel very one-dimensional. I had a hard time believing that Margo (the girl our main protagonist is borderline obsessed with) is a WORTHY candidate not just for his affections, but anyone’s affections. It’s possible that’s the point, but it feels like a mixed opportunity… and it was disappointing to have the females kind of consistently… lesser than.

2. Some of the bigger stuff felt theme-y/preach-y in a way that was overreaching for the rest of the book. Parts of it feel so honest and genuine that the parts that overreached were… disappointing.

Overall, I liked it/didn’t regret reading it. But it didn’t give me the same feeling of OMG MUST SHARE etc Fault/Stars did…

Posted in Children's/Young Adult

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