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Admit it, we were all big fans of John Green when we were around the age of thirteen. At least I know I was. To my thirteen year old self, John Green "understood me." He wrote about novels that had quirky girls and always a semi average guy as the lover. Of course, I Imagined myself as that quirky girl that no one could understand. I felt connected to these books. Don't get me wrong, at nineteen years old now, I still can appreciate the works of John Green and I love him as a person, but now I look upon those books and notice how damn redundant they all were. Each had a normal guy just trying to do his thing and along comes his manic pixie dream girl and oh my his whole world is turned upside down! A+ John for really understanding how to cater to young teens. Anyway, the point I am trying to make is, yes, John Green is a great author and writes well, but yes, he is redundant as hell. So no, I will not be reading his new book Turtles All the Way Down. However, I bet my thirteen year old self would have as she fell into that never ending loop of reading books with extremely similar plot lines and cliches.
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He's found his niche. Is it any different from any mystery writer who has a 14-book series following the same detective? Or the romance writers with hundreds of erotica to their name? I've only read one of his books (and it was exactly how you described it), and I agree, he's a fine writer and tells his stories well. But yes, they're all essentially the same. If his market is young teens, then I say let him go at it.
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I always have a good time reading John Green books. The characters may be a bit flimsy, but the stories are just so adventurous and easy to follow that you just want to snuggle up and read one of his books. For example, Looking for Alaska was an interesting story. But Pudge and Alaska were stereotypes disguised as people. I enjoy the storyline itself (the iconic toothpaste scene) but the characters were too weak to get any real depth from the book.
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He's fine. I cried a little bit reading the Fault in Our Stars, I'll admit. I do find though, that all his characters sound the same and they all sound more like him than any actual teenager. I think his teenage audience appreciate those characters because at that age it's really hard to distinguish intelligence and maturity for obnoxious pretentiousness. (I certainly couldn't!). He's a good writer, though, there's no doubt about it.
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I wasn't a big fan of Fault in Our Stars when I read it at age 14, nor was I a fan of Looking for Alaska which I read around the same time. But I love his thought process and his writing style. Sure, he does have a repetitive plot in his books, but I find myself reading his books all the same.
"Create your own identity. Let it be unique for yourself yet identifiable for others."
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I've only read Fault in Our Stars, but I was already in my twenties by the time I read it. At first and at certain points, I could not get into it, but when I did, boy, did I enjoy it. Even pulled a full quotes from it because I was inspired. I had seen the names of his other books/summaries in Fault, and I was just like meh, I'd never really read those. The summaries of those books seemed similar. Honestly, I ask myself today, 'Did I really enjoy Fault in Our Stars, or did I make myself like it because it was all the hype?'
I think I liked the random few quotes that I pulled from it rather than the whole book. But everyone's gotta find their niche, right?
"Maybe the two different worlds we lived in weren't so different. We saw the same sunset." - Ponyboy Curtis, The Outsiders
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I've read only one book by John Green, his recent " Turtles all the way down" which does NOT disappoint. He addresses OCD with a quirky young girl's point of view quite realistically since the author himself is diagnosed with it. Like most of his novels the story revolves around quirky characters. It's predicable yet lovable.
I must say, if you read too many of his books, it might be redundant. However, It's an insightful and a refreshing take on people with mental problems especially if you're new to his work.
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I think that happens with a lot of people. The things they liked as a child (under 10 or so) are classics. Even as an adult they still give you those warm, fuzzy feelings and good memories. Whereas the things you liked as a teen now seem cringe-inducing and should be buried in the deepest hole you can dig.
As for John Green, I've only read Paper Towns and that was as an adult. It was okay, but it made me realize his books are not for me. Sorry, but I don't look back on my teenage years as the best time of my life.
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His books are okay; I don't dislike them but I don't love them either. Read his book a few years ago out of curiosity (because my other friends were reading them as well. I have to agree that he's a good writer, but the stories never really "stuck" with me.