Thursday, December 21, 2006

An Abundance of Katherines

John Green is my new favorite author. I loved Looking for Alaska (Cailin, you said you won't read it because it might be 'sad', I think I'm going to make you...). But now, I think I enjoyed Katherines even more. I didn't think that was possible.

Just the premise of the book itself was interesting - a prodigy graduates from high school and worries that he'll never develop into a genius. I've never thought about that before - that a child prodigy is just that - a 'child' prodigy. What happens in adulthood? It makes me wonder what happened to the eight grader I had in my AP Physics class. Hmmm... But on the other hand, a kid who seemed totally normal growing up, could become a genius and discover something that could change the world. So, Colin (after getting dumped by his 18th Katherine) and his best friend (who I have to say was my favorite character) set off on a road trip. Colin tries to get over his break up and discover something that will leave his mark on the world, and confirm he is more than just a 'child' prodigy.

School library journal gave it a good review - except for this line: 'The narrative is self-consciously dorky, peppered with anagrams, trivia, and foreign-language bons mots and interrupted by footnotes that explain, translate, and expound upon the text in the form of asides. It is this type of mannered nerdiness that has the potential to both win over and alienate readers.' But, honestly, how could the narrative been written any other way? The book is in the perspective of a prodigy. There were so many other characters (especially Hassan who could halt Colin in his nerdiness by saying, 'Not interesting.') to balance the 'mannered nerdiness.' I thought it felt real, and I loved Colin's character because it was so consistent.

Anyway, I'm hoping to see another John Green book out on the shelves soon...



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