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Looking for Alaska (2005)

by John Green

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
16,152721267 (4.08)462
Sixteen-year-old Miles' first year at Culver Creek Preparatory School in Alabama includes good friends and great pranks, but is defined by the search for answers about life and death after a fatal car crash.
  1. 60
    The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger (HatsForMice)
  2. 62
    The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (kaledrina)
  3. 51
    An Abundance of Katherines by John Green (mad.)
    mad.: this his john green's first book and although it has a completely different plot and characters it has the same style as an Abundance of Katherines
  4. 40
    On the Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta (thesundaybookreport)
  5. 30
    Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli (fyrefly98)
    fyrefly98: More average-boy-meets-life-changing-girl.
  6. 20
    The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky (Cecilturtle)
  7. 20
    Paper Towns by John Green (chwiggy)
  8. 20
    The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  9. 20
    Can't Get There from Here by Todd Strasser (Dainichi-Goddess)
  10. 10
    White Noise by Don DeLillo (alaskayo)
    alaskayo: The place to start with one of the American literary monoliths of the 20th century. Green takes a lot of influence--good influence--from DeLillo's stylistic uniquities and adapts it for a YA audience, leaving him arguably with a catalogue as intellectually important and influential for future generations.… (more)
  11. 32
    Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen (wegc)
    wegc: Both are about a teen leaving home, trying to broaden their horizons, trying new things.
  12. 10
    Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers (kissthestarsxx)
  13. 00
    Hard Land by Benedict Wells (Aludii)
  14. 00
    Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey (bluenotebookonline)
  15. 00
    Undone by Brooke Taylor (kissthestarsxx)
  16. 00
    Everybody Sees the Ants by A. S. King (kaledrina)
  17. 11
    Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A. S. King (kaledrina)
  18. 00
    To Jaykae: Life Stinx by Jean Davies Okimoto (thesundaybookreport)
  19. 00
    Becoming Chloe by Catherine Ryan Hyde (curioussquared)
  20. 12
    A Separate Peace by John Knowles (themephi)

(see all 21 recommendations)


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» See also 462 mentions

English (701)  Spanish (6)  Swedish (3)  French (3)  German (2)  Catalan (1)  Dutch (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  Hungarian (1)  All languages (719)
Showing 1-5 of 701 (next | show all)
My oldest daughter is a fan of John Greens work. I've seen "The fault in our stars" movie, it was great, but sad, so I didn't want to read the book. Papertowns doesn't really interest me. My daughter gave me this to read and told me I'd love it... she was right. I didn't even realize while reading this that the school is based off a real school in Alabama, my home State.This info tid bit made me appreciate it even more.

I love this book! This will be a reread for me. I loved the main protagonist, as well as the supporting cast.....except Alaska, who I found selfish and annoying. I was immediately pulled in and did NOT put this down. I finished it in one sitting. Well done Green! ( )
  Jfranklin592262 | May 22, 2022 |
Have you ever read a book that you keep thinking about, even after you are long done with reading it? This is that book. I don't know how John Green has tapped into the teenage brain and heart, but he is basically a genius on those creatures.

This is a coming-of-age book that reminds me of "Catcher in the Rye," just up-to-date. The kids drink, a lot, smoke, a lot, cuss, a lot, have sex, a lot. The characters are great: Pudge, The Colonel, Alaska, the Old Man, the Eagle. The story is from Pudge's point of view and is about a group of outsiders in a private school. They stay on weekends and sometimes holidays. When they go home it is more likely to a trailer than a mansion like some of their peers. These kids are insightful and deep.

The best part for me was when the boys drove "through" the accident. It was so moving and sad and real and horrible. It was exactly what I would have done. Their response was also perfect.

This book is about life and loss. Growing up but not too much. Seriousness and silliness. I laughed literally outloud and cried at all the sad parts. It is about making memories and creating futures. I predict a classic read here.

"There were so many of us who would have to live with things done and things left undone that day. Things that did not go right, things that seemed okay at the time because we could not see the future. If only we could see the endless string of consequences that result from our smallest actions. But we can't know better until knowing better is useless." pg. 218.

Cheers to the Great Perhaps and may we enjoy the ride to wherever that leads. ( )
  BarbF410 | May 22, 2022 |
Funny, charming, moving and true. I liked this a lot even if it maybe lays it on a bit thick at times. ( )
  whatmeworry | Apr 9, 2022 |
Look, there's plenty of reviews for [[John Green]] books, but most of them are from folks quite a bit younger than me, and I suspect a different gender. This is the second of his books I've read, and I can't help thinking that he is filling a void left by John Hughes. It's a void I'm glad he's filling, frankly, and updating. Hughes tapped into and provided a voice for a whole generation - yes, there are problems with his movies looking back with more sensitive hindsight. And I'm sure Green will suffer the same fate in another couple decades when people look back on his work and the film adaptations. But it's rare to be able to tap into a time and ethos while it's still playing out. While I didn't like this one as much as [The Fault in our Stars], I did like it, especially the main character's obsession with famous dead people's last utterances.

4 bones!!!! ( )
  blackdogbooks | Apr 3, 2022 |
Looking for Alaska was a good book and I enjoyed reading it. The characters are realistic and author Green once again shows his tremendous skill at portraying the pain and uncertainty of teen love. I always feel those emotions again myself every time I read a well written YA book that portrays love. Perhaps that’s why I read YA books, to be reminded of what it felt like to be a teenager.
Still, the book did have its share of the usual flaw in books that include children or teens as major characters. It imbued the protagonist with insights and wise philosophic statements of which no teenager or child would ever be capable.
Overall, though, in spite of these, the books and the feeling of authenticity and genuineness that made it a good read and I can easily see why I so often saw it mentioned or praised by those familiar with it. ( )
  PaulLoesch | Apr 2, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 701 (next | show all)
Miles Halter is a teenager from Florida who likes to read bibliographies and collect last words of famous people. He decided to go to Alabama to finish last two years of his high school education. Miles chooses Culver Creek Preparatory School. His parents are questioning if he decide to go to preparatory school to meet new people and change his boring life style.
Miles instantly became a friend with his roommate Colonel who gave him a nick name Pudge. The Colonel is clever, proud, and financially poor. He is a born leader. Miles got introduced to Alaska Young. She gave his life a new dimension. Alaska is a beautiful, funny, intelligent, and rebellious. Miles falls for Alaska. She became a center of Miles universe.
This book is made using a before and after counting element to build up a grand climax of events. It is an unusual, but effective way of presenting a story. It is a great read. Many teen topics are addressed here: smoking, alcohol consumption and consequences, meaning of life, friendship, belonging, religion, death and dying, grief, and healing.
The author of Looking for Alaska, John Green, made me think about life and our attitude about it. A topic of depression got brought in with Alaska’s behavior. She gave out many times signs that she is suicidal. Her attitude about dying and her struggle with her mother’s passing away was never addressed in a productive way. Her depression was not taken seriously. Consequences are tragic and unbearable.
added by sla3 | editschool review, sla3
Miles's narration is alive with sweet, self-deprecating humor, and his obvious struggle to tell the story truthfully adds to his believability.
added by khuggard | editSchool Library Journal, Johanna Lewis

» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
John Greenprimary authorall editionscalculated
Celi, LiaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McCarthy, LindaCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vandervoort, IreneDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Woodman, JeffNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To my family: Sydney Green, Mike Green, and Hank Green
"I have tried so hard to do right."
(last words of President Grover Cleveland)
First words
The week before I left my family and Florida and the rest of my minor life to go to boarding school in Alabama, my mother insisted on throwing me a going-away party.
How will I ever get out of this labyrinth!
If only we could see the string of consequences that result from our smallest actions. But we can’t know better until knowing is useless.
When adults say, "Teenagers think they are invincible" with that sly, stupid smile on their faces, they don’t know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we are never irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes and manifestations. They forget that when they are old. They get scared of losing and failing.
You spend your whole life stuck in the labyrinth, thinking about how you’ll escape it one day, and how awesome it will be, and imagining that future keeps you going, but you never do it. You just use the future to escape the present.
When you're walking at night, do you ever get creeped out and even though it's silly and embarrassing you just want to run home?
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Sixteen-year-old Miles' first year at Culver Creek Preparatory School in Alabama includes good friends and great pranks, but is defined by the search for answers about life and death after a fatal car crash.

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Average: (4.08)
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