by John Green
Genre: Coming of Age, Mystery
Paperback: 221 pages
Inspiration: Banned Books Week (last week)
Challenged, but retained for the eleventh-grade Regents English classes in Depew, N.Y. (2008) despite concerns about graphic language and sexual content. The school sent parents a letter requesting permission to use the Michael L. Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature novel and only three students were denied permission to read the book.
Description from amazon:
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.
Looking for Alaska is a thoughtful read. It tackles the meaning of life. Pudge, the main character, ponders the question and shares his thoughts on World Religions - Islam, Christianity, and Buddhism.
Friends and friendship bonding plays a big part in the book which I enjoyed. Slant rhyming and rapping conversations were fun to read.
Pranks are a part of life in the boarding school setting which was also entertaining to read. This is something new to me as I grew up in the public school system. Actually I first became aware of them from reading the school pranks post by Celia of adventures of cecelia bedelia (a must read for hilarious moments).
In the book, Pudge, likes to memorize famous last words just like author, John Green. Below is John's latest vlog, reciting Presidential Last Words.
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-offer ends October 10, 2009