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Looking for Alaska: A Novelby John Green
For his junior year, Miles makes the bold decision to transfer to Culver Creek boarding school. This leap of faith opens opportunities for new journeys in friendship, romance, personal philosophy, and mischief. Green's pitch-perfect narrative explores the unknown — and the unknowable — in a thoughtful, profound, and moving manner. An intelligent, intense coming-of-age story from a talented new author.
Synopses & Reviews
Miles "Pudge" Halter is abandoning his safe-okay, boring-life. Fascinated by the last words of famous people, Pudge leaves for boarding school to seek what a dying Rabelais called the "Great Perhaps."
Pudge becomes encircled by friends whose lives are everything but safe and boring. Their nucleus is razor-sharp, sexy, and self-destructive Alaska, who has perfected the arts of pranking and evading school rules. Pudge falls impossibly in love. When tragedy strikes the close-knit group, it is only in coming face-to-face with death that Pudge discovers the value of living and loving unconditionally.
"This ambitious first novel introduces 16-year-old Miles Halter, whose hobby is memorizing famous people's last words. When he chucks his boring existence in Florida to begin this chronicle of his first year at an Alabama boarding school, he recalls the poet Rabelais on his deathbed who said, 'I go to seek a Great Perhaps.' Miles's roommate, the 'Colonel,' has an interest in drinking and elaborate pranks — pursuits shared by his best friend, Alaska, a bookworm who is also 'the hottest girl in all of human history.' Alaska has a boyfriend at Vanderbilt, but Miles falls in love with her anyway. Other than her occasional hollow, feminist diatribes, Alaska is mostly male fantasy — a curvy babe who loves sex and can drink guys under the table. Readers may pick up on clues that she is also doomed. Green replaces conventional chapter headings with a foreboding countdown — 'ninety-eight days before,' 'fifty days before' — and Alaska foreshadows her own death twice ('I may die young,' she says, 'but at least I'll die smart'). After Alaska drives drunk and plows into a police car, Miles and the Colonel puzzle over whether or not she killed herself. Theological questions from their religion class add some introspective gloss. But the novel's chief appeal lies in Miles's well-articulated lust and his initial excitement about being on his own for the first time. Readers will only hope that this is not the last word from this promising new author. Ages 14-up." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Green's dialogue is crisp.... The language and sexual situations are aptly and realistically drawn, but sophisticated in nature." School Library Journal, starred review
This special 10th anniversary collectors edition includes additional exclusive content.
Winner of the 2006 Michael L. Printz Award
Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist, 2005
Top Ten, NPRs 100 Best-Ever Teen Novels
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, who will pull Miles inter her labyrinth and catapult him into the Great Perhaps.
Looking for Alaska brilliantly chronicles the indelible impact one life can have on another. Winner of multiple awards including the Printz Medal, this stunning debut marked #1 bestselling author John Greens arrival as a groundbreaking new voice in contemporary fiction.
Kate Axelrods atmospheric, intense book captures perfectly the heady feeling of being on the edge of adulthood, when the abstract concept of love starts to have real and sometimes terrifying meaning and consequences.” Emily Gould, author of Friendship
THE LAW OF LOVING OTHERS . . .
Hours after Emma returns home from boarding school, she realizes that her mom is suffering from a schizophrenic break. Suddenly, Emmas entire childhood and identity is called into question.
COULD NOT BE DISCOVERED BY REASON,
Desperate for answers, Emma turns to her boyfriend, Daniel. Will he love her even if she goes crazy too? But its the lonely, brooding boy Emma meets while visiting her mother at the hospital who really understands Emma. Phil encourages Emmas reckless need for hurt and pain in the face of all this change and she is soon caught in a complicated spiral of loss and mistrust.
BECAUSE IT IS UNREASONABLE.”
In the span of just one winter break, Emmas relationships alter forever and she is forced to see the wisdom in a line from Anna Karenina: The law of loving others could not be discovered by reason, because it is unreasonable.”
A beautifully grounded coming-of-age novel, THE LAW OF LOVING OTHERS demands that the reader accept the main character, Emma, for who she is, while also creating deep sympathy for all that she is going through.
About the Author
John Green attended a boarding school in Alabama not unlike Alaska's Culver Creek. After graduating from college in 2000, he worked as a chaplain at a children's hospital. His experiences with patients and their families during intense crises solidified his desire to write for teens and inspired him to bring his comic sensibility to a candid novel about the excitement of breaking the rules and the challenge of confronting loss. John now writes for several national magazines, both print and Web-based. He is also a commentator for National Public Radio's afternoon newsmagazine, All Things Considered, and Chicago's NPR affiliate, WBEZ. This is his first novel.
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