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Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Turtles All the Way Down (edition 2017)

by John Green (Author)

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2,0291074,912 (4.03)70
Title:Turtles All the Way Down
Authors:John Green (Author)
Info:Dutton Books for Young Readers (2017), Edition: First Edition, 304 pages
Collections:Battle of the Books Covers, New Books

Work details

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

  1. 40
    The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (chwiggy)
  2. 20
    Looking for Alaska by John Green (MarchingBandMan)
    MarchingBandMan: The other quasi-existentialist John Green book. Miles Halter deals with existentialism/nihilism in a different way than Aza Holmes, yet this earlier, rawer YA novel expounds on similar themes.
  3. 10
    Paper Towns by John Green (chwiggy)

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» See also 70 mentions

English (101)  German (2)  Spanish (2)  Dutch (1)  All languages (106)
Showing 1-5 of 101 (next | show all)
There's a lot to like about John Green and a fair bit to be critical of. I appreciate his efforts to deconstruct the Manic Pixie Dream Girl in Looking for Alaska and for giving us a more honest look at teen mortality in A Fault in Our Stars. Turtles All the Way Down, however, is more of a miss for me. Perhaps I shouldn't be looking for realism in YA, but it frustrates me that we keep selling kids and young adults the idea that fantasies will solve their problems rather than building skills. I mean, don't we all have a billionaire boy next door who's ready to fall in love with us and plop huge sums of money in our laps?

The one thing I did appreciate about this book, however, was the way mental illness was addressed. It's important to teach people that while mental illness is certainly a mitigating factor in a lot of areas, it doesn't absolve them of the responsibility to try to be a good person. Mental illness does not give carte blanche to be a jerk.

I really appreciated Daisy's conversation with Aza about that idea, as it's one of the few examples I've seen in pop culture. It's an awkward conversation to have, but just as people with mental illness need to set boundaries with others, others also need to set boundaries with them. When Daisy called Aza out for not being a great friend, it opened the door for a renegotiation of their friendship that benefited them both. I appreciate Green highlighting this and affording Aza the strength and caring to be able to handle that kind of renegotiation.

The last quibble I have is the way the novel ended. If we're going to jump so far into the future, that's a frame that needs to be set early on. It was odd and jarring, and didn't really add much to the narrative. If Green wanted to clarify the point that Aza will struggle with OCD her entire life, as many people do, there were certainly better ways to do it.

Overall this was miss for me, but Green definitely gets credit for trying. ( )
  mediumofballpoint | Mar 4, 2019 |
My first John Green book… My last John Green book…
I’ll just say it. I hate Aza a self centered girl so obsessed with ideas of illnesses, infections and other obsessive compulsive disorders and notions that if she might have taken her pills might have been able to control it. I really have no idea how she has kept the friend she has as long as she has. You are not a friend if you do not even know your bestie has a cat. Really what part of this book did I like? I liked the beginning when I actually thought it was going to contain a bit of a mystery to be solved, that’s what the blurb told me (arrhhhggg). Then it went off the rails when it turned into a self pity story about Aza. I don’t think I’m being mean. Everyone has some sort of issue, medical or mental problem and many have learned how to deal with them. Oh, and actually know how be a real friend and ask “What is your cats name?”
( )
  greergreer | Mar 1, 2019 |
I enjoyed this book, I find Greene's
writing to be different in that it is so philosophical and at times does get redundant, but this is so different to other writers. I know that Aza's illness with OCD seems to be the main focus of the book, but I would have liked to see more development of the story of the missing billionaire. It is well written with very real characters and I really enjoyed the famous author quotes and how they tied into the story line. Also, i loved the ending, no loose ends, its well worth reading. ( )
  LydiaGranda | Feb 15, 2019 |
The novel, Turtles All The Way Down, is about a girl named Aza Holmesy who is a regular 16 year old who's never had to trace a fugitive billionaire with a hundred-thousand-dollar reward if found. Her friend is all in for it, but Holmesy is a bit reluctant at first. She ends up going anyways because she just so happens to be friends with his son Davis. So she begins her journey to Davis's house, which is across the White River, and finds him in a mansion. Turns out he already knows and is a bit worried. Daisy is determined to find him. He left a few clues, which were helpful in the process of finding him. First, they find a clip of him on a camera the night he left. And they also saw a few things he wrote about. Through all of this, Davis kept telling them to not even bother with finding him, for he believed he will come back. The more they spend time with Davis, the more Aza falls in love with him. But every time she does something, all her thoughts overpower her and she ends up getting mad and doesn't do it. One time while she was driving Harold, her car that she named, Daisy and her got in a fight. Aza ends up totaling Harold and is sent to the hospital. There, she wakes up in the hospital and ends up drinking hand sanitizer. Which doesn't help the situation. Fast forwarding to the end when Daisy and her were going to a party for an art club under an large tunnel, they discover what they've been searching for. Joggers mouth aka Pogue's Run. That as what they had been searching for this entire time. But the odd thing is, once they found it, they didn't do anything. they didn't tell anybody or make a huge scene out of it. They just stood up and walked away from it, and told each other to not say a word. And that was it.

Overall, I loved this book a lot. It kept me interested through the entire thing. And it's not like there was just one mystery they were looking for. It was many that they figured out.. I think my favourite part of the book was when Aza and Daisy figured out about the joggers mouth. It was so exciting to know that what they've been searching for they finally found. And there is a bit of romance between Aza and Davis. But not so much. Its not a love story people. ( )
  AleynaG.G1 | Jan 16, 2019 |
This is what mental illness looks like. Sixteen year old Aza is trying to be a good person, but she is stick in her mind. She is convinced that she is going to get sick (especially from C Diff). She has a cut on her finger that she will not let heal - sure it will be infected, and she cannot stop spiraling and convince herself it isn't. She lives constantly in fear of germs.

In this story, a billionare goes missing. His son, Davis, is a childhood friend of hers, and she decides to look him up to see what the story of his dad's disappearance might be. There is a $100,000 reward for anyone with information in finding his dad. Aza never intended to get involved, but when she sees Davis, she can't stop herself. She starts to fall for him, but is so tortured with her own thoughts, that she struggles to have a relationship with him. Instead, she helps Davis and his brother find what happened to their dad and with that - come to terms with her own demons.

I have read all of John Green's books. And I have to say - I find them hit or miss. Some of them are fantastic, and others are....fine. This one was fine. I loved many parts of it. Seeing into the mind of a truly mentally ill person is fascinating. (is that the right word?) I found myself gripping the book as Aza spiraled out of control with her thoughts, wanting to shake her and tell her to "get a grip". But she can't. She can't help it. She would give anything to not have these irrational fears and thoughts, but she cannot stop them. And no matter what it looks like to us in the outside world, to her it is very real.

The "eh" part for me was, well....mostly the rest. Her best friend is a bit of a jerk. Her mom seems to only parent about 50% of the time (letting her daughter stay out until 11pm on school nights without much care, even though her mom is a teacher). There isn't much background to Davis' father - we never really hear the whole story, but I guess to be fair - that is a very minor part of the book. The book felt a little jumbled and scattered, but maybe that was the style he was going for.

I read the book in one day. It is a quick read with not a lot of dialogue. It is definitely geared toward the YA crowd, and I know for a fact my 14 year old daughter would love this book.

Hard to say, hard to say. If you like John Green - give it a go. I think it has enough value - especially in the world of mental illness - to not be passed up. ( )
  JenMat | Jan 10, 2019 |
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John Greenprimary authorall editionscalculated
Rudd, KateNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Man can do what he wills, but he cannot will what he wills. -Arthur Schopenhauer
To Henry and Alice
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At the time I first realized I might be fictional, my weekdays were spent at a publicly funded institution on the north side of Indianapolis called White River High School, where I was required to eat lunch at a particular time -- between 12:37 P.M. and 1:14 P.M. -- by forces so much large than myself that I couldn't even begin to identify them.
No one ever says goodbye unless they want to see you again.
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It all begins with a fugitive billionaire and the promise of a cash reward. Turtles All the Way Down is about lifelong friendship, the intimacy of an unexpected reunion, Star Wars fan fiction, and tuatara. But at its heart is Aza Holmes, a young woman navigating daily existence within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts.… (more)

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