Thursday, October 1, 2009

Looking for Alaska

First, I must start off by saying "Squee! Look at what I just got published!" It's only the school newspaper, but it's a start!

Okay, back to business. I finished Looking for Alaska a few weeks ago and I absolutely forgot to write my review. Bad Mariah! Tsk Tsk.

I'll say this before I say anything else: I like John Green, I really do.

But, for me, this book was just too similar to Paper Towns. Does anybody else feel this way?

Let's look at the basic plot of both books (no spoilers):
-nerdy guy is looking for something bigger than himself
-nerdy guy falls in love with beautiful girl
-beautiful girl is a misunderstood force of nature
-beautiful girl disappears mysteriously
-nerdy guy tries to figure out what happened to beautiful girl for the rest of the book
-nerdy guy learns more about the world and about himself

Ya see what I mean?

If I had to choose between Looking for Alaska and Paper Towns, though, I would choose Looking for Alaska. The story was easier to relate to, or so I felt. In Paper Towns, Quentin is in love with someone from the past, a beautiful illusion that he can't seem to grasp.

Whoa, total rhyme.

Pudge, from Looking for Alaska, at least meets the girl he grows to love in the beginning of the book and gets to know her and her quirks before she disappears. It felt more realistic that a guy would be chasing after something he had grown to love, rather than an enigma.

I'd love to hear opinions on this book, if anybody has them.


sraasch said...

I have John Green books on my to be read list still, but am looking forward to them. Though I might choose Looking for Alaska before Paper Towns now...

Sarah said...

I have opinions! Me! *waves hand* Pick me!!
I agree 100% that Paper Towns and Looking For Alaska had a very similar plot. However, I think that, for being essentially the same story, John Green did a great job in making both interesting and as unique as possible.
HOWEVER, I didn't like Paper Towns that much - well written, but characters I couldn't really relate to. Whereas Looking For Alaska was humorous and exciting and the characters were relatable. Of his three novels, I like Looking For Alaska the best and am glad I read it first.

Sarah said...

OK, I'm back. Just read your article. Congratulations!! And the freshman 40? It's not nice to write columns about your blog friends ;)
I hadn't heard anything about this government soda tax, but it sounds like a mean, mean idea.

Mariah Irvin said...

Haha, it was actually somebody else that wrote that part! It was written in point-counterpoint style.

Pen Pen said...

I read ur article!!! SO exciting!!! How much would the tax be?!

ANd- I'm surprised with the similarities in those 2 books. You'd think his editor would have been like, "...Didn't we just publish this story?!".
Cosmetic surgery to a story does not a new book make! He should KNOW that!!

Lady Glamis said...

This is a great review! I think I want to read this one before Paper Towns.