Looking for Alaska (Green, John)

7/10

Looking for Alaska

 

Synopsis

“’In the dark beside me, she smelled of sweat and sunshine and vanilla, and on that thin-mooned night I could see little more than her silhouette, but even in the dark, I could see her eyes – fierce emeralds. And not just beautiful, but hot too.’ Alaska Young. Gorgeous, clever, funny, sexy, screwed up – and utterly fascinating. Miles Halter could not be more in love with her. But when tragedy strikes, Miles discovers the value and the pain of living and loving unconditionally. Nothing will ever be the same.”

Overview – *Contains spoilers*

Miles’ character begins innocently but exposed to alcohol and cigarettes, he soon finds himself swept up in the fashion of Culver Creek which largely consists of drinking, smoking and playing pranks on the teachers. After Alaska’s death, Miles and Chip seek to find out whether the car accident was that, an accident, or suicide.

Green addresses topics in this book which other authors may steer clear of, such as suicide and boarding schools. My only criticism with this book is that I found Alaska’s death, a) predictable and b) happening too suddenly. One minute she was alive, and the next thing that they know, she is dead. Although I liked the layout of the book, split into two sections – before Alaska’s death and after her death, it did aid the predictability of her passing away acting as a countdown towards the event. As soon as Miles is introduced to Alaska, the reader knows roughly the end event and the character. Despite this, it was still an enjoyable read and I would recommend this to any teenager.

This book is realistically crafted; it follows the story of Miles Halter and his journey to boarding school. There, he meets Chip ‘The Colonel’, Takumi and Alaska Young. Alaska leads him on a wild ride from drinking and smoking to carrying out pranks on the teachers. That seems to be the fashion at Culver Creek and it is no exception when Miles arrives. He gets swept along until an event occurs in the book which changes everything.

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