John Green is a fantastic writer. This is the second of his novels I’ve read and find his style and characters to be magnetic. In LOOKING FOR ALASKA, a boy starts at a boarding school in Alabama at the beginning of his junior year. Naturally, he’s highly intelligent, but not popular in his old school. Two friends showed up for his going away party. Pretty sad.
But when he arrives at his new boarding school, he immediately befriends his new roommate, the “Colonel,” and a beautiful, but odd young lady named Alaska (which she was allowed to choose at the age of six). Green writes insanely odd characters. Ones we cannot help but fall in love with.
Pudge, as he has been nicknamed by the Colonel, goes through a coming of age as his new friends teach him how to take chances, cut loose, and (to me) embrace who he is. I won’t throw in a spoiler, but Pudge’s character arc ends perfectly, albeit with some tragedy along the way.
My only complaint, one I have with many YA authors, is the use of explicit sex scenes. Yes, I’m a Christian and believe that sex should happen after marriage, but even a secular reader would grow tired of the constant theme, that of sex as a necessary aspect of growing up. One can mature and grow without it.
Otherwise, another fantastic story from Mr. Green.