Looking for Alaska by John Green is a thought provoking literature on teenage life – a developmental stage where relationships and personal identity stir reckless mischief in the desire to “seek the Great Perhaps”.
The Before part of the book revolves around adolescent reality where a multitude of firsts are likely to occur. As an adult, my personal assessment of Before is inapplicable reading due to its ordinary pubescent theme. I was looking for (not Alaska) a more divergent and out-of-the-box mode of writing. Though the unconventional non-chapter style is commendable, I was struggling to convene reasonable thoughts why a teenager (or I as an adult) should continue reading.
As the pages for Before came to an end and the After part of the book begins, a reality that knows no age emerges for life-changing reflections. The quest for answers becomes a fusion of longing, frustration, hopelessness and faith.
The book’s cover photo is very symbolic. It may be interpreted in different ways depending on one’s perspective but a beautiful interpretation on this proposes spiritual musings. When one day the light of your candle dies… Was your stay within the labyrinth worthwhile? Will your exit from the labyrinth be genuinely missed? Was your search of the Great Perhaps transcended into a profound pursuit of the Almighty?
The book may have been intended for teenagers but the theme (confusion, desire, purpose, pain, suffering, etc.) is suitable for all ages. To all those in search of their “Great Perhaps”, this Young Adult Literature may after all be your eye opener.
Technical Assessment (5 = Excellent, 4 = Above Average, 3 = Average, 2 = Below Average, 1 = Poor)
Moral Assessment: Catholic Perspective (5 = Excellent, 4 = Wholesome, 3 = Acceptable, 2 = Disturbing, 1 = Abhorrent)
** 2 (underage drinking and smoking, profanity, sex)
© rooks 2012