Looking for Alaska by John Green
My rating: 5 of 5 stars ("Amazing!")
First thoughts: A great, thoughtful book with real characters and real dialogue.
Miles doesn't much have a niche where he "belongs" in school, so he finds it fairly easy to shift ground and enroll in a boarding school in Alabama his junior year of high school. He goes intending to seek the Great Perhaps, as inspired by the last words of Rabelais. At Culvert Creek, he instantly finds himself in a circle of friends who - consciously or not - are seeking the same. The title character, Alaska, is the central, enigmatic character around whom the boys cluster. She keeps the group together through her alternately ebullient nature and her mysterious distance. Miles experiences more than he perhaps ever intended to in that first year at Culver Creek, and he has Alaska to thank for it.
The book is definitely not for younger readers, but it will grip you from beginning to end. A real treat and honestly written by newcomer Green. This book inspired me to pick up others by him (e.g., Paper Towns).
Topics Discussed: Identity, Existentialism, Relationships/Connectedness
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