Paper Towns was the second John Green novel that I read. After previously reading Looking for Alaska I was excited to read more of his books. I had high expectations and was not disappointed. The book came out in 2008 and is based around a group of teenage school friends, two in particular. Quentin ‘Q’ Jacobsen is the main character, the person whose point of view we are reading from. He and Margo Roth Spiegelman become best friends as soon as she moves in next door and converts his boring life, but they become strangers until one night, years later Margo invites him out on a night of revenge. The next morning it becomes obvious that Margo is missing, and whilst others have given up on finding her, Quentin hasn’t. He then sets out to find her with his friends, following the ‘clues’ she left behind.
The characters in the book are evenly spread out, sharing comedy traits as well as remaining serious. Q, is the most relatable in my opinion. He is a lost teenager without any idea of what he is doing at the moment, or what to do in the future. Ben was the one that always seemed to be making the friends be like everyone else; it almost seemed as though he thought the group was never enough on themselves, even though they were, because they were different. Radar was the smart one, and the most sensible in some sense. Lacey, the popular, best friend of Margo who you gradually begin to see how important she is. And then Margo, to me it seems she is needed by everyone, in order for them to find themselves. She is the fun, adventurous one who is mysterious and nobody ever really knows what she is up to; and that is why she is important.
Young adults could find themselves relating to this book as it focuses a lot about finding your identity, who you are as a person. There is a constant discussion about identity, Margo’s especially. This is because every single character has a different idea about her and what she is like, but in the end find that she is only a person; just like them. This leads to my favorite quote from the book-
“What a treacherous thing to believe that a person is more than a person”
The book itself is split into three sections, and this is personally my favorite thing about it. The sections are; The Strings which is about breaking and change. The Grass which is about friends, family and the memories. The Vessel which is about journeys and the end. This helps to clearly understand what is happening.