I really thought I would love Paper Towns. I had only read one John Green book before (yes, of course, The Fault in Our Stars), and had very high expectations for the rest of his stuff. But this book really rubbed me the wrong way.
I know, Margo Roth Spiegelman is the “manic pixie dreamgirl” type that boys — like Quentin — can’t help but love from afar. But I saw nothing even remotely likable or enjoyable about Margo, and frankly, was annoyed that the entire book was about finding her when I never once felt that she wanted or should be found. Ugh.
What I did want was for someone — Margo’s parents, the detective, Quentin’s parents — to get Margo some professional help. Clearly the girl had some major problems. Quentin’s parents were psychologists and did nothing, said nothing. This drove me crazy.
I didn’t like Margo one bit and wish they had simply looked through her records, found Mermaid Avenue, listened to it, and said, Hey, This is Really Good. The End.
What I did like was the world of Quentin’s friends. I loved Radar and Ben, and even Lacey later on. I loved the real high school world described by Green — from band geeks to popular kids — and the realization at the end of senior year that nothing from the past 4 years matters anymore.
But I despised Margo and found her to be selfish and manipulative. And Quentin’s obsession with her made me dislike him, as well. Sorry.
And I couldn’t help but wonder what my own parents would have said or done if I had decided to skip out on my high school graduation to drive thousands of miles across the country to find my crazy neighbor. I’m pretty sure they would have said NO.
Enough with my complaining. I didn’t like the book because I couldn’t stand the characters. The End.