Paper Towns by John Green is about a popular yet elusive girl, Margo Roth Spiegelman, who suddenly disappears in the middle of the night. She has run away, leaving clues to her whereabouts for Quentin, the protagonist who believes he is in love with Margo. Quentin and Margo were once close friends when they were younger, but they have grown apart over time. However, just a few weeks shy of graduation, Margo pulls Quentin back into her action-packed life, taking him on a night-long trip to harass all the people that have wronged her in the past. The day after, Quentin cannot stop thinking about her, but she then goes missing. Margo’s family and the police are fed up with her constant mischief, so the responsibility falls on Quentin to find Margo and bring her back.
This story is a satisfying mix of romantic drama, mystery, and humor. It would be most engaging for teenagers because they can connect to these characters who are still trying to find themselves. The characters are desperate to hold on to the last few weeks they have as teens before they enter the real world. It also highlights the carefree attitude and innocence of adolescents during this point in their life. John Green touches upon many of the different ideas teenagers believe at this age, and throughout the book he shows how the childish perspective on these beliefs change.
On the surface it is simply a humorous book, but on a deeper level readers can find a myriad of hidden messages. The book focuses on the popular Margo, and how everyone in the school sees her as nothing more than that. On the other hand, Quentin sees her for who she truly is, which could be a reason she chose to leave clues for him. A major theme of the book is that people are more than what society defines them as, and that it is important to see past stereotypes.
Paper Towns was also one of the hottest movies of this past summer. It was adapted to film by 20th Century Fox and directed by Jake Schreier. Reviews by critics have shown that Paper Towns did not achieve the same amount of success that Green’s other book-to-movie adaptation, The Fault in Our Stars, did when it was released last year in 2014.
However, unlike some film adaptations of books, this one really stayed true to the novel. With a talented cast starring Nat Wolff and Cara Delevingne, this touching movie brings one of John Green’s beloved novels to life and is great for fans of the book
This novel is an easy read that still has many underlying messages hidden within it. Anyone can pick it up and read it in their free time, while still benefiting from the important and relevant themes. Paper Towns also differs greatly from some of John Green’s other novels. It is one of his lighter stories and is more humorous than some of the others. Overall, Paper Towns is relatable, thought-provoking, and sure to give readers a good laugh.