Miles Halter is fascinated by famous last words–and tired of his safe life at home. He leaves for boarding school to seek what the dying poet Francois Rabelais called the “Great Perhaps.” Much awaits Miles at Culver Creek, including Alaska Young. Clever, funny, screwed-up, and dead sexy, Alaska will pull Miles into her labyrinth and catapult him into the Great Perhaps.
from John Green's Website
Usually when I write reviews, I know what I'm going to write. While I read, I take mental thoughts of what I would write the review for. Looking for Alaska was not an exception. Though,my mind isn't thinking about the book, or feeling any emotions about what I just read. I guess you can say that reading is like a drug for me, a roller coaster of emotions. Looking for Alaska didn't have any after effects though.
I had read John Green's most recent book, The Fault in Our Stars and adore the heck out of it. I plan on rereading it, and that is saying something. Since, John Green released Looking for Alaska-his debut novel-in 2005, I can see the difference in his writing like the sun in the sky. It is so strange reading an author's past work, when you have recently read their most recent-and some say best work. I guess, I was a bit let down at the writing. It didn't give as much as I was hoping for.
Looking for Alaska is one of those books, where I have all time favorite characters and all time characters that I detest. Is it bad to say that I hated Alaska? Before I read the novel I saw this video from Renee of Nehomas2 on youtube. She talks about the manic pixie dream girl trope in her video, and I guess that Alaska is a MPDG, and not a good one at that. Alaska is suppose to be mysterious and bring Pudge on epic adventures and pranks, but she's just the b word in opinion. Even though the ending is sad and there's a whole explanation that goes on, Alaska was just unlikable as a character in my opinion.
As for my favorite character, Takumi was quite hilarious in his "I'm a motherfucking fox" ways. Also he raps, and I usually don't listen to rap-just not my cup of tea-but he makes it awesome. Though, the Colonel was my absolute favorite character. He has a big personality and I can't believe that he's 5'0. The way he acts and moves make me think of him as a 6'0 guy. The Colonel is lovable, and he doesn't come and go away for long periods of times, like Takumi. He is mostly always there for Pudge, and Pudge is there for the Colonel. I secretly ship those twos at time.
The pranks and mystery weren't good enough for me. I don't know why, but I saw everything coming. The ending especially and what happened to Alaska was so obvious that I wanted to shout at Pudge at times and get his head in the game. I have to say the Barn Prank was my favorite, even though the "most epic prank" at their school was suppose to be the ultimate prank, it wasn't as good.
I finally understood why peer pressure could make someone start to smoke through this book. Before, I didn't really understand why anyone would hurt themselves to get friends, but I kind of get it through Pudge. Though, I don't approve of underage smoking, or drinking, I finally understand why. It's a mixture of you just have to to get through the day, and the social atmosphere you're in.
In the end, I would not read Looking for Alaska again. Maybe when I'm old and want to refresh the story in my mind, and have lived more, but now I wouldn't for a long time. John Green really upgraded his writing since he was first published, and I think that's what I like about him. His writing changes in a good way. I'm not sorry that I read Looking for Alaska, but if my best friend asked me how it was I'd give a head shakes, thumb down, shoulders shrug. (2 out of 5)