Looking for Alaska by John Green This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

October 17, 2012
Custom User Avatar
More by this author
John Green's book, Looking for Alaska, is a riveting and inspiring novel that will capture the attention of teens from every demographic. It is based on the story of Miles “Pudge” Halter, a scrawny, cerebral teen who has a major obsession with famous last words. In search of what Pudge refers to as “a great perhaps,” he makes new friends, enemies and ­discovers himself. Green's
use of language makes the book real, and the story line is undeniably relatable.

Before Pudge's adventure at Culver Creek Boarding School began, Pudge was just your typical nerd living in a small town in Florida. His studies were most important and he loved reading biographies. So when Pudge announces he wants to attend Culver Creek, “Why?” pops into everyone's mind. “So this guy, Francois Rabelais. He was a poet. And his last words were ‘I go to seek a Great Perhaps.' That's why I'm going. So I don't have to wait until I die to start ­seeking a Great Perhaps,” he explains.

So, when Pudge is launched into the rebellious world of Culver Creek Boarding School, he is only looking for one thing – his “great perhaps.” In the end, he walks away with an understanding of life and death, a best friend and bittersweet memories. Along the way he meets Chip (a.k.a. Colonel), who introduced him to Takumi, cigarettes, booze, and Alaska Young (a.k.a. the love of his life). The more he gets to know Alaska the more he loves her moody, quick-­witted ways.

Chip, Takumi and Alaska lead Pudge into the unknown, allowing him to put full trust in them. The group seems invincible, witty and powerful with a record of pranks and ­mischief – until it all comes crashing down. After that, nothing is ever the same.

Green's style makes this an effortless read with beautiful, natural language. He draws the reader in using catchy, recyclable lines, “If people were like rain, I was a drizzle and she was a hurricane.”

While reading the book readers will find themselves laughing and crying with the characters. Every quote stands on its own with witty metaphors and raw emotion. As the story unfolds, questions arise: “How will we ever get out of this labyrinth of suffering?” and “What happens to us after we pass?” By the end all these questions are answered, with a feeling of hope.

John Green has outdone himself with this touching novel. Its powerful language is thought-provoking in the most positive, intellectual ways that will leave the reader thinking for years.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

Join the Discussion

This article has 1 comment. Post your own now!

maddiefraz said...
May 3, 2013 at 1:58 pm
John Green did an excellent job with his book, Looking for Alaska. He is one of my new favorite authors and is definitely extremely talented. This book was pretty clear throughout the whole story. Nothing was difficult to read or impossible to decipher. It moved swiftly which made it an easy read, and kept me interested the whole time. You stay in the real world when reading this book, it faces real life situations teenagers go through. No fantasy or science fiction is relevant at all. It reflec... (more »)
bRealTime banner ad on the left side
Site Feedback