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Paper Towns
Paper Towns
Author: John Green
Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs back into his life--dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge--he follows. After their all-nighter ends and a new day breaks, Q arrives at school to discover t...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780142414934
ISBN-10: 014241493X
Publication Date: 9/17/2009
Pages: 320
Reading Level: Young Adult
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.

3.8 stars, based on 143 ratings
Publisher: Puffin
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

Eudial avatar reviewed Paper Towns on + 13 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
Before getting this I had heard rave reviews from friends and peers alike, and really hoped that it lived up to its alleged awesomeness. Green's flair for witty dialogue and narration is on fine display here, and this book is good enough in a comedic sense, but that alone is not why I recommend this novel. The themes and messages of people's perception of others can ring true even if you don't personally identify with the characters, and the ending is one of such carefully crafted bittersweetness you have to feel at the very least a twinge of emotion.
BetsyP avatar reviewed Paper Towns on + 566 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Contemporary teen fiction by John Green. Quentin Jacobsen is your average geeky teenager, who has loved his next door neighbor Margo his whole life. But, Margo runs with a different crowd, the popular crowd.

Then, one night, about a month before graduation, Margo enlists Q in an adventure, like he's never had before. Then, Margo disappears. Q becomes obsessed with happened to Margo, the girl he thought he knew, but obviously didn't.

There are lots of things to like about this story. The best part is the humor. Quentin has memorable friends who help him along the way. But, I was oddly disappointed with the ending. While I understand Margo's motivations, I really didn't understand her actions or her end-goals. The book is fair.
GeniusJen avatar reviewed Paper Towns on + 5322 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Reviewed by coollibrarianchick for

I first fell in love with John Green when he came out with the book LOOKING FOR ALASKA. I was equally enchanted with AN ABUNDANCE OF KATHERINES. Last night, I finally finished John Green's latest and greatest addition, PAPER TOWNS. Mind you, I have been trying to finish it for three days crammed between work, work, and more work. It got to the point that something had to give and it was going to be my work, because I just had to finish the book. I read someone else's review and she said that she was tempted to skip to page 305, the last page, to see what happened to one of the main characters, Margo. I want this person to know I was tempted to but, alas, I did not peek either - I was so proud of myself. Besides, waiting until the end made the book even more satisfying.

Reading this book reminded me of the people who I went to high school with - the band geeks, the jocks, the Untouchable popular kids. I knew people that were like Margo, Quentin, Radar, Ben, and Lacey. Some I liked, others I didn't. I get Margo's feeling of needing to get out of the paper town she lives in so she doesn't get even more sucked in.

Would I have done it her way? Probably not, but her way led to some really funny dialogue between the characters and a neat little mystery to figure out.

PAPER TOWNS pulls you in from the beginning. One thing Green does so well is go into detail, painting rich layers seamlessly tying together the characters and their stories.

We read a story about something that happened in Quentin and Margo's childhood and then skip forward many years to a time right before Prom, which Quentin will not go to for any amount of money offered. Things get interesting when Margo shows up at his window dressed liked a ninja, insisting that he has to help her. Mind you, Margo is Quentin's unrequited love, so you tell me, does he go along with Margo's adventure? It only takes a little coaxing, but he sure does. The night, as they accomplish all the things on Margo's list, who is hellbent on revenge, is pretty magical, not just for Quentin but Margo, too.

School the next day was definitely interesting, for lack of a better word. Quentin struggles to say awake in class because their adventure lasted to just about dawn, and then realizes that Margo isn't in school. I am not sure if I would have gone to school, either, after all they had done the night before....

The question will soon become - where is Margo? She has seemingly disappeared, leaving clues for Quentin to find. Will Quentin and his friends figure out the clues, and will they lead to Margo? And if they do, will she be dead or alive? You will just have to read the book to find out.

It will not surprise me one iota if Green walks away with a few awards for this book. Definitely another winner!
reviewed Paper Towns on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book may seem like just another run of the mill coming of age tale of some random high schooler, but it will surprise you. I couldn't put the book down once I started, I finished it in 3 days which I haven't done in years.

John Green infused "Paper Towns" with his own flavor of wit and insight which will keep you not only laughing but identifying more and more with the characters. This book reminded me of the angst of being a teen, the struggles with conformity, and trying to find your own self through all the chaos.

After reading this book I found myself wanting to reread it. You can't help but want to look for all the little clues and hidden meanings Green sprinkled through the novel.
reviewed Paper Towns on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Quentin and Margo Roth Spiegelman grew up as next door neighbors. They were friends until the age of ten when Margo ditched him for the cool crowd. Over the next few years he watched her from afar, mesmerized by her antics. The story finds them on the cusp of high school graduation. Margo is the girl that every high school has, beautiful, popular figure who seems to have the world at her fingertips. One night she appears at his bedroom window, asking him to join her in a night of pranks to get even with those who have wronged her. This experience provides new hope to Quentin that their friendship can be renewed, but the next day Margo is gone, run away from home and her life. But she has left some clues for him, and as he unravels them he finds that he never really knew her at all.

His first fear is that she has committed suicide, a reasonable thought with what she was experiencing in her life at the time. He follows the clues, fearful that he will stumble on her dead body. Finally the clues lead Quentin and his geeky buddies on a hilarious across the country road trip. We watch his journey as he strives to find Margo, and in doing so he finds himself.

This book was beautifully written. The details used to describe moments found in real life created a masterpiece. The wonderful, quirky character development made even minor ones come to life and I could see them in the halls of my local high school. There were many moments when I laughed out loud while reading. The story stayed with me for days after I read it. On the surface it seemed to be a mystery to solve, but on reflection the true, deeper meaning of the book becomes evident. It was almost like I was so interested in him finding Margo that I almost missed the point of the exercise. While you may want to speed through this book along with the story, I suggest you slow down and savor each moment, novels like this don't come along everyday.
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ophelia99 avatar reviewed Paper Towns on + 2527 more book reviews
I got this book through the amazon Vine program and all I can say is "WOW!" I really enjoyed this book. I want to go and order all of the other books this author has written and read those too.

Q is your typical kind of nerdy, hangs with the band kids, straight A student kind of guy. Things would stay that way for him if it wasn't for his neighbor Margo Roth Spiegelman. She is just cool and awesome in every way. Then she shows up in his bedroom in the middle of the night...dressed as a ninja. She takes him on a tour of the town that will change who he is forever. He is so stoked about spending time with her; then the next morning she is gone. Is she really gone though? She has a history of leaving clues when she leaves home. So Q and his buddies try to unravel the mystery of Margo.

This book is so many things at once. It is about the sameness of the world, about what people want, about people who can't fit in to society's rigid structure, about how we label each other, it's a coming of age story, a mystery, and an adventure.

I was awed at how I read this book straight through without even realizing I had started reading it. I was amazed at how funny and serious it is; how it made me laugh out loud and cry too. I think there is something for everyone to relate to in this book it doesn't matter your age. We've all been in school, dealt with parents, and friends so we can all relate.

Green captures so many things with great insight. The craziness of prom, the sadness and emptiness of those last days of high school, the frustration of people who want something different, and the guilt of people who are happy with being just plain ole vanilla.

The above are at the heart of the story, but the plot itself is a well crafted mystery. Full of suspense and an intriguing trail of clues the book was impossible to put down. I read it in 3 hours. I also laughed my head off at Q's crazy friends and felt Q's frustration. The characters in this book were so real. The story itself is an absolute riot to read; it's crazy fun.

In a nutshell I loved it. I still cannot believe that a book that touches on such deep issues was so much fun to read. I think everyone should read it. I am keeping it as part of my permanent collection and I hope someday my son will read it and love it too.

Did I mention I also want to read all of Green's other books now? I really do.
skywriter319 avatar reviewed Paper Towns on + 784 more book reviews
The brilliant John Green's third novel starts off quietly, then builds to a roaring finish that sets a new bar for all young adult literature.

After years of running in different social spheres, towards the end of senior year, Quentin Jacobsen's childhood friend, next-door neighbor, and unrequited love, the beautiful and eccentric Margo Roth Spiegelman, enlists him to help her in what becomes the wildest night of his life. However, just when he thinks he and Margo are on track to be friends--and maybe something more--again, she disappears, leaving some clues behind for him to wonder about.

Quentin is convinced that following and figuring out the clues will lead him and his friends to Margo. What happens next, then, is an epic, unforgettable journey of self-discovery, humanity, adolescence, friendship, and love.

What could be a typical detective plot is brought alive at the hands of the witty and talented John Green, but this book is so much more than a simple mystery: you'll want to read it again and again to discover all the philosophy, themes, and lessons Green has packed into this novel, as well as to laugh again at the many hilarious moments. I thought that LOOKING FOR ALASKA couldn't be topped, but I am proved wrong. With PAPER TOWNS, John Green establishes himself as the premier young adult author, one to which every other person will be compared to.
reviewed Paper Towns on + 1435 more book reviews
This book takes readers back to their own high school years. Many of us knew people like Margo, Quentin, Radar, Ben, and Lacey. Like Margo, I wanted to leave my small town to explore other places. As the tale rolls out the reader begins to wonder what happened during Margo and Quentin's childhood when they were friends.

Just before prom, one realizes that Quentin will not attend for any reason whatsoever. Then Margo appears at his window dressed like a ninja asking him to help her with a plan. He is enamored by Margo and most willing to help her with a list of things she wants to do. Their nighttime adventure takes them all night. The next day, so sleepy, he doesn't at first realize that Margo is not in school. Wondering where she has gone, he begins to find clues that can lead him to her. At least he hopes so because the questions that run through his mind are frightening. Has she been kidnapped? Is she dead? Or, has she just run away? Much of the book centers on his search for Margo.

While the two live different lives, the author somehow weaves them together in a most skillful manner. This is a fast paced read with richly developed characters. Margo has a way of putting people off while Quentin is quiet and sometimes slow to catch on the what is happening. I liked this clever book with its wonderful characters. Good read.
reviewed Paper Towns on + 3 more book reviews
Took me WEEKS to read this book. I just couldn't get into it. But the very end (kind of) made up for it. I didn't enjoy much of the book until Margo was found, but I did like the life lesson that was portrayed at that point. Wouldn't recommend, but don't absolutely hate it either.
gina329 avatar reviewed Paper Towns on + 27 more book reviews
It started off good, and I was actually liking it, but the storyline just didn't hold my interest. Ended up skipping and scanning just to finish it to see how it ended. Not impressed with the ending.