John Green's debut book in the universe of books. Launched in 2005, it is possible to see that the work remains as alive and current as at the time of its release. The work embodies themes such as maturity, friendships, events from the past that mark our lives, sexuality, the passage through high school, death and mourning. John Green's productions talk a lot with this adolescent universe and its infinite questions in the search for self-discovery.
With well-built characters, Looking for Alaska, introduces us to Miles Halter, a boy who has nothing special and who seems to be a snob. Everything seems too uninteresting or exaggerated. He is a passive character who is always taking orders and never being the 'head' of the thing. However, we are getting a certain affection for the character of Miles who goes on an adventure in a boarding school because he thinks his life is very still, without news, without glitter. His passion for life is to memorize the last words of the dying, which defines his passion for biographies.
In this adventure that takes place at Culver Creek boarding school, Miles meets Chip Martin who soon nicknames him “Gordo / Bujo” due to his thinness and then we are introduced to Alaska Young. In addition, Miles is introduced to a world of drinks, drugs, loves and pranks. In search of the famous “Grande Maybe”, we are taken to a search for a new future that deals with the difficulties of acceptance faced by him, and the feeling that this is his last opportunity to be young and happy, characteristic elements the reality of any teenager who, like Miles, needs to define his place in the world. Initially, Miles' new life, his arrival, his adaptation to the environment seems very charming, fun, everything he expected. He participates in school pranks, makes unusual friendships, has his nights washed down with drinks and cigarettes, and meets a girl who changes the whole reason for his existence, that is, his heart is snapped up by the intense and volatile Alaska.
Overall, it is a poetic, reflective work that talks about the conflicts of being a teenager, of being someone in a medium that frustrates you, with social problems and that is a curtain that hides depression and addiction behind the choices of the characters . An important fact is that the book shows with extreme veracity the daily lives of these young people and uses them as a mirror of our youth, however, the way they deal with problems is shown in a generalized way, as if the answer to everything was cigarette and alcohol. But in a way, we get closer to the characters, as we have insecurities and fears that are often key to future disasters. A bonus for this work is professor Mr. Hyde who makes us reflect more deeply on themes related to religions and how we deal with the events around us.
Who are you, Alasca? it is a painful, dramatic book, with a very intense emotional charge and that is 08 or 80. It is a work that makes us think how we should deal with our problems. These young people deal with their problems in a negative way, unfortunately, hide their pain and fears in alcohol, cigarettes and sexual relations. Reflecting on mental health is important. Asking for help is important. But it is art imitating reality, we do not always understand the signs. Everyone finds Alaska's attitudes very bizarre, but they don't see it as a problem that needs to be addressed. This anguish she feels, this guilt, this feeling that she could have done something and did not consume it in an absurd way and colleagues seem not to see it. Behind that wide smile, Alaska felt destroyed. That’s about it. About being attentive to such topics as depression, anguish. And in sex, in cigarettes, in the drink she threw herself. This is not normal.
The book is divided into two parts, the before and the after. The before count with 136 days before what happened to Alaska and afterwards it has 136 days after what happened with Alaska. The way Colonel, Miles and Takumi deal with this second part is touching and shows us that we are not prepared to lose someone. As well? We need to learn how to deal with grief. It is not easy to lose someone we love, but we know that everything that is born, dies and we need to learn to deal with it in a less destructive way.
The language of the book is fluid, easy to understand and light, although events are difficult to deal with. John Green, in this new edition of 10 years of commemoration of the work, provides a series of answers made about the book and how was the process of building the book we know today. From his first work until today, JG has evolved his writing a lot and we can believe that he is a writer who speaks very naturally about these conflicting situations that we are all bound to live. I must emphasize that the poetic content of the work, which talks about life and death in such a philosophical and real way, is a bonus and something that marks the reader.