February 12, 2010

Friday's for the Guys REVIEW: Paper Towns by John Green

Every Friday I highlight books and authors that are ones boys might really enjoy. I'm not saying girls wouldn't read these books, but they are clearly "guy" books.
This Friday I'm highlighting:
Paper Towns by John Green
As anyone who reads my blog regularly knows, a thing I really struggle with is finding good books for boys.  After reading Paper Towns, my second book by John Green I realized he is a GREAT author for boys! Ok, not for my 7th grade boys, but even better, for older boys, probably the group that's the hardest to find books for.  Why is he a good author for boys?
1. His narrators are boys so boys can relate
2. His characters aren't always the ultra smooth have-it-all-together boys.  They are real!
3. They like guy things
4. They show that guys think and care and feel way more than we believe sometimes!
5.  They can help guys grown and learn about the world
If you have never read a book by John Green before I suggest you do! Now!
Ok to go with this, here is my review of Paper Towns
From Goodreads
When Margo Roth Spiegelman beckons Quentin Jacobsen in the middle of the night—dressed like a ninja and plotting an ingenious campaign of revenge—he follows her. Margo’s always planned extravagantly, and, until now, she’s always planned solo. After a lifetime of loving Margo from afar, things are finally looking up for Q . . . until day breaks and she has vanished. Always an enigma, Margo has now become a mystery. But there are clues. And they’re for Q.
My Review:
Ok I'm going to get this a bit brief because I'm afraid I'll give things away if I say too much!  I really liked this book.  Right from the beginning when Margo climbed in Quentin's window, I was hooked.  I had to know more about these characters.  I will tell you, I didn't always like Margo.  She seems selfish at points, but I think I needed to think that, so I felt some of the conflict that Quentin felt.  And at times he frustrated me as well! But what made this book amazing was to watch the changes take place in Quentin as he searches for Margo.  He learns so many things about life and people - things we all need to learn.  And on a personal note,  I really liked that what helped him gain these understanding was the poem "Song of Myself" by Walt Whitman, one of my favorite poets! (I named my dog after him!) Through the lines of this poem, Quientin learns how to truly look at the people around him.  It's very clear he hasn't been doing that. And it held up a mirror to how I live my own life.
As Quentin and his friends set out in search of Margo, I felt his urgancy and his need to find her. So when the final scenes play out, I felt all he did as well.  It was a roller coaster ride, but one I'm glad I took.
Final thoughts: Boys can relate to Quienten, and we can all relate to what he learns.
Best stick with you image: The fish exploding in the car.
Best for ages: 15+ at least due to mature language and scenes.


  1. It's so important to draw attention to reading, and attract reluctant readers to it,especially boys. In fact, I've recently completed a feature magazine article on this subject that came out in October, "Help for Struggling, Reluctant Readers."

    I grew up as a reluctant reader, in spite of the fact that my father published over 70 books. Now I write action-adventures & mysteries, especially for tween boys, that avid boy readers and girls enjoy just as much.

    My blog, Books for Boys http://booksandboys.blogspot.com is dedicated to drawing attention to the importance of reading. And my new book, Lost Island Smugglers - first in the Sam Butler Adventure Series - is coming out in June.

    Keep up your good work.

    Max Elliot Anderson

  2. Great book, and I agree- a good one for guys.

  3. I LOVED this book! Reading this book really confirmed what I had already suspected: John Green is a genius. I totally agree that this book is best saved for older teens, but it's such a nice alternative to all of the supernatural and series books out there. Sometimes I just want to read a realistic book with lots of twists that don't involve werewolves and vampires. And, sometimes, I want to wish that there was a sequel and not have that wish granted! Thanks for your review!

  4. I gave you the wrong address for my library blog: russell-library.blogspot.com.
    You can find your award there. I am very on top of things, as you can tell!