Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

I am biased when it comes to anything John Green writes. I follow him and his brother Hank on social media. I watch their crash course history series. I listen to their podcast and their YouTube channels. John seems like a great guy. He cares about the world and he cares about young people. I think he writes young adult fiction because he wants to share all the thoughts about the world in them with kids who need it.

Green is a philosophy nerd and waxes poetic in each of his stories. Turtles All the Way Down is no different. The story focuses on Aza who suffers from severe obsessive compulsive disorder and crippling anxiety. Her best friend is Daisy who writes Star Wars fan fiction. There's a bit of a mystery as Aza searches for the billionaire father of her old friend Davis. But basically it's about the stories we tell about the world and the stories we tell about ourselves and each other.

"...I started thinking about turtles all the way down. I was thinking that maybe the old lady and the scientist were both right. Like, the world is billions of years old, and life is a product of nucleotide mutation and everything. But the world is also the stories we tell about it."

We have science and knowledge but we also have stories that connect us to the earth and to each other and to the universe. Yup, it's turtles all the way down.

So here's where my bias comes in. I love the philosophy in Green's books. He builds a story with meaningful characters around these ideas. Not everyone is going to love that. There wasn't a lot of story, not a lot happens in this novel. But there is a lot of character development and self-discovery.

If you like feel-good stories that make you think about the world then Green's books are for you and this one is a great one.


  1. I read this in December and haven't written a review yet because I know I'm just going to fan girl the heck out of it! You did such a lovely job of critiquing but also describing just how much you love John and Hank Green. John's writing is out of this world. As someone with anxiety, although not as debilitating, I felt that John GETS it. He's also talked about his own anxieties and dealing with OCD. The world can be so unforgiving and yet so loving. It's strange how that happens.

    Love your review! I'm so happy when I see someone else that enjoys his stories as much as I do!

    1. So glad to hear you are a fan too! I just eat up his stories. Thanks for stopping by!


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