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Paper Towns

by John Green

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
11,064501420 (3.92)276
One month before graduating from his Central Florida high school, Quentin "Q" Jacobsen basks in the predictable boringness of his life until the beautiful and exciting Margo Roth Spiegelman, Q's neighbor and classmate, takes him on a midnight adventure and then mysteriously disappears.
  1. 20
    Looking for Alaska by John Green (chwiggy)
  2. 20
    Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver (kathleen.morrow)
  3. 10
    Reality Check by Peter Abrahams (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: The search for someone missing, a girl friend (Reality Check) and an ideal girl (Paper Towns) becomes a voyage of self-discovery for high school boys in different mysteries, one dialogue-rich and character-driven, the other plot-driven and suspenseful.… (more)
  4. 10
    Winter Town by Stephen Emond (faither)
  5. 10
    To Jaykae: Life Stinx by Jean Davies Okimoto (thesundaybookreport)
  6. 00
    Le Grand Meaulnes by Alain-Fournier (Cecilturtle)
    Cecilturtle: Dnas les deux on retrouve des locaux plus ou moins fictifs dans lesquels les personnages trouvent l'amour
  7. 00
    The Punk and the Professor by Billy Lawrence (Anonymous user)
  8. 00
    Turtles All the Way Down by John Green (chwiggy)
  9. 00
    The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (chwiggy)
  10. 00
    Freaks Like Us by Susan Vaught (Runa)
  11. 00
    Flash Burnout by L. K. Madigan (foggidawn)
  12. 00
    Almost Perfect by Brian Katcher (Runa)
    Runa: Similar endings
  13. 00
    Just One Day by Gayle Forman (FFortuna)
  14. 00
    The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson (FFortuna)
  15. 00
    The Ashford Affair by Lauren Willig (FFortuna)
    FFortuna: "It is easy to forget how full the world is of people, full to bursting, and each of them imaginable and consistently misimagined." - John Green
  16. 12
    As Simple As Snow by Gregory Galloway (Runa)
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» See also 276 mentions

English (486)  Spanish (8)  Dutch (2)  German (2)  Italian (1)  Hungarian (1)  All languages (500)
Showing 1-5 of 486 (next | show all)
An absorbing read with some bits I don't buy, but I didn't mind. Tell me the cops would not arrest a boy who vandalized houses and cars and assaulted a classmate after breaking into his house. And no way would a bunch of college bound high school students skip their high school graduation to drive from Florida to New York. That said, it was fun to read, the plot was not predictable, and there are some fine one-liners.

"Those of us who frequent the band room have long suspected that Becca maintains her lovely figure by eating nothing but the souls of kittens and the dreams of impoverished children." ( )
  dmturner | Jun 29, 2020 |
Nice 'thrillerly' edge to this YA novel by John Green. The teenagers are a bit too worldy wise and astute to be totally convincing. The last quarter dragged a little and brought down my rating. ( )
  Georgina_Watson | Jun 14, 2020 |
This book was very readable, I got through it quickly enough, but I wasn't a huge fan. Basically, I think the best part of the book is the banter between the protagonist and his friends, and some of the quotes about paper towns (I can type up what I marked in my Kindle once I have a more reliable Internet connection!). The weaknesses include ~Margo Roth Spiegelman~, the unrealistic paragon of all that is exciting in the world, and the fact that most of the entire book revolves around a quest for her after she takes off. The book is narrated by the protagonist, so her perfection can be passed off as reflecting the way HE idealises her, but for me it got boring.

Also, I think this is the first time I've partaken in high school-set fiction that's made me think I'm maybe getting a bit too old for high school-set fiction. So, there's that. ( )
  Jayeless | May 27, 2020 |
Margo starts off as a sort of manic pixie dream girl, and by the end of the novel she becomes a bitchy female Holden Caulfield, without the emotional baggage of a dead brother. Or the funny insights. Or the character depth. What exactly is she running away from? She's a cipher, a plot device. Her initial character development on her night of vengeance with Quentin ultimately doesn't go much of anywhere.

But as Q learns throughout the course of the novel, we cannot really know another person. It's the attempt, the journey, that is more important than the ending. That works for this book, too. The search for Margo is more interesting than the ending. As an English teacher, I love the Whitman references. More than that, I love the goofy friendship between Q, Ben, and Radar. Their banter cracks me up. "Ben Starling, you better not have bought your token black friend a racist shirt." "Poetry is just so emo. Oh, the pain. The pain. It always rains. In my soul." Yes, the events are at times unrealistic (at times??), but who cares? It's light with being dumb, although Green sprinkles some lovely gems of wisdom throughout and captures the angst of graduating from high school pretty well.

It ain't "The Fault In Our Stars." And that's okay. I also didn't read "Looking for Alaska," so I'm not bothered by the comparison. Three stars. ( )
1 vote ChristopherSwann | May 15, 2020 |
This is another great tale by YA author John Green. Here we meet our hero Quentin, an unlikely hero who just happens to be in love with his neighbor since childhood. She is the incredible Margo Roth Spiegelman and she is amazing. Despite being close as children, the two have drifted apart as teens, but then one night Margo drags Q into a night of adventure he will never forget, or perhaps recover from. Then Margo disappears and Q begins a pursuit to find her. Along the way, Q and his friends discover much about life and themselves, making this a great read for everyone. I loved this tale. ( )
  Susan.Macura | May 3, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 486 (next | show all)
The narration of “Paper Towns” spends too much time in Quentin’s head, which, to be sure, is an entertaining place
 

» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
John Greenprimary authorall editionscalculated
Frost, MichaelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Funfhausen, ChristianCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Miller, Dan JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vandervoort, IreneDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
And after, when we went outside to look at her finished lantern from the road, I said I liked the way her light shone through the face that flickered in the dark.
—"Jack O'Lantern," Katrina Vandenberg in Atlas
People say friends don't destroy one another What do they know about friends?
—"Game shows Touch Our Lives," The Mountain Goats
Dedication
To Julie Strauss-Gabel, without whom none of this could have become real.
First words
The way I figure it, everyone gets a miracle.
Quotations
Here's what's not beautiful about it: from here, you can't see the rust or the cracked paint or whatever, but you can tell what the place really is. You see how fake it all is. It's not even hard enough to be made of plastic. It's a paper town. I mean look at it, Q: look at all those cul-de-sacs, thoses streets that turn in on themselves, all the houses that were built to fall apart. All those paper people living in their paper houses, burning the future to stay warm. All the paper kids drinking beer some bum bought for them at the paper convenience store. Everyone demented with the mania of owning things. All the things paper-thin and paper-frail. And all the people, too. I've lived here for eighteen years and I have never once in my life come across anyone who cares about anything that matters.
Margo was not a miracle. She was not a fine and precious thing. She was a girl.
I like finding stuff out about her. I mean, that I didn't know before. I had no idea who she really was. I honestly never thought of her as anything but my crazy beautiful friend who does all the crazy beautiful things.
What a treacherous thing it is to believe that a person is more than a person.
Nothing ever happens like you imagine it will," she says. "Yeah, that's true," I say. But then after I think about it for a second, I add, "But then again, if you don't imagine, nothing ever happens at all.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
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.
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