Forever is composed of nows

2011/06/20 § 4 Comments

Paper Towns by John Green.
That is the latest book I’ve finished. It is classified as young adult, which I guess I should have grown out of by the age of 20, but I guess I’m not made for the heavy classics. (Title is a quote from the book when someone quotes Emily Dickinson, so hah!)

It’s so hard to leave-until you leave. And then it is the easiest goddamned thing in the world…Leaving feels too good, once you leave.

I like Green’s books, they are simple yet moving (mind you, I have only previously read Looking for Alaska, but that book is pretty damn decent). In Paper Towns we meet Q and his nerdy friends, and the love-of-Q’s-life, Margo, who is very popular and famously bad-ass. This is the last weeks of high-school and Margo surprisingly shows up at Q’s bedroom window in the middle of the night to ask for help for some revenge pranks, before mysteriously disappearing the day after. However, she leaves Q clues as to her whereabouts, and the book is mainly about finding Margo, but also about friendship, poems and if one person really can become another person.

That’s always seemed so ridiculous to me, that people would want to be around someone because they’re pretty. It’s like picking your breakfast cereals based on color instead of taste.

The funniest scene was definitely drunken Ben and his beer sword. Drunken Ben in himself was awesome, but I would hate to have him as my friend as I suspect he could be super annoying at times. I need to try to think book characters into my-real-life situations, by the way.

Did you know that for pretty much the entire history of the human species, the average life span was less than thirty years? You could count on ten years or so of real adulthood, right? There was no planning for retirement. There was no planning for a career. There was no planning. No time for planning. No time for a future. But then the life spans started getting longer, and people starting having more and more future, and so they spent more time thinking about it. About the future. And now life has become the future. Every moment of your life is lived for the future – you go to high school so you can go to college so you can get a good job so you can get a nice house so you can afford to send your kids to college so they can get a good job so they can afford to send their kids to college.

This book was engaging, so much that I managed to read through the last 60 pages during a family gathering at my house, even though people kept blabbering and trying to talk to me (No, I am not interested in “how much you hated ants and ALWAYS wanted to wear dresses when you were five and we were walking in the woods”. Sorry.) Q was funny at times, he kept thinking WAY too much, I could absolutely relate to that. It wasn’t as sad or moving as Looking for Alaska, though. Nevertheless, Green is a good writer. It has made me way too keen on running away, good thing I don’t have my drivers license yet, or I would be gone first thing (okay, I would have to PLAN first. Perhaps that is a good idea…)

“It’s more impressive,” I said out loud. “From a distance, I mean. You can’t see the wear on things, you know? You can’t see the rust or the weeds or the paint cracking. You see the place as someone once imagined it.”
“Everything’s uglier close up,” she said.


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