‘Paper Towns’: Witty mystery novel and soon to be summer blockbuster

Novel and soon to be film, "Paper Towns" by John Green, is a mystery novel that raises the question of how our perceptions of the world and the people around us compare to reality.  Photo Courtesy of johngreenbooks.com
Novel and soon to be film, “Paper Towns” by John Green, is a mystery novel that raises the question of how our perceptions of the world and the people around us compare to reality.
Photo Courtesy of johngreenbooks.com

After the massive success of the film adaptation of John Green’s novel “The Fault in Our Stars,” his novel “Paper Towns” is also on its way to the big screen this summer. The movie, which stars model Cara Delevigne and “Fault in Our Stars” actor Nat Wolff, will be released on July 24, 2015.

“Paper Towns” was John Green’s third novel and for people who have only read or seen John Green’s story “The Fault in Our Stars,” the story is a very different one. This book still deals with some serious issues, but in many ways it is more lighthearted than “The Fault in Our Stars.”

“Paper Towns” is the story of Quintin, a teenage boy, who is infatuated with his neighbor and childhood friend and crush, Margo Roth-Spiegelman. Margo is a mysterious girl that is known for her wild and mysterious adventures. The adventure begins for Quintin,  when Margo sneaks in his window in the middle of the night, dressed in all black, and asks Quintin to accompany her on a one night quest for revenge.

After their night of adventure, she disappears. This is not uncharacteristic of Margo as she is known to run away from home. Margo always comes back home however, so when she runs away no one is too surprised or alarmed. Margo leave clues behind for her parents each time she runs away in hopes that they will follow the clues to find her.

This time is different as she leaves the clues for Quintin. The story really begins when Quintin realizes he must crack the clues in order to find the eccentric girl he believes he loves.

Margo and Quintin’s adventure at the beginning of the novel is so entertaining, inventive, and fast paced.  When Margo leaves, the book slows down significantly. The book picks up again as it begins to reach the conclusion.

“Paper Towns” starts out strong with its quirky and witty characters: Quintin and his best friends, Ben and Radar.  Their personalities are very funny and I often found myself laughing out loud. Some of their jokes, however, verge on inside jokes that might be funnier if you were actually in their friend group.

“Paper Towns” is a unique kind of mystery novel. Quintin and his friends have to join together to solve the clues and riddles Margo leaves behind.  For people who read mystery novels, or read them as a child, this novel is an interesting take on the genre. Green combines some of the elements of a mystery novel with characteristics that are often seen in young adult fiction such as road trips, revenge and adventure.

John Green’s wit makes this novel an entertaining read. Through the story of Quintin and Margo, Green provides an interesting prospective on love and the way people view those that they are in love with. “Paper Towns” is a book that is worth the read before you head off to the movie theater.

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