Paper Towns

If you think you could get away from the media tsunami that’s about to begin on the latest John Green book-to-movie adaptation you’d be wrong. Dead wrong. I don’t think there’s a website or blog out there that isn’t going to try to mention this.

If you’ve been living under a rock or, hey, maybe you just aren’t that into young adult literature (and that’s ok) you may not know much about John Green or this brilliant novel. I’m not going to go into review mode and let you know all about John and his works; that’s what Google is for, right? What I am going to do is just give you a heads up on the media storm brewing so you’re prepared. OK, OK, maybe I just need to prepare and the easiest way to do it is in the form of talking to you (read:myself).

Paper Towns is, for lack of a less pretentious terms, a book soaked in melancholy… much like all of John’s books, really. His story telling is realistic, his characters heart-breakingly tormented by the idea of Life and Love and all other capitalised words that float in the heads of all our inner-teenagers. The book is award winning and I am sure the movie will be, too.

I’ve watched the trailer (which will be linked below) and it looks Good. I can’t say Great just yet because a trailer, to me, is foreplay and you don’t say the foreplay is better than the event itself (if you do you’re doing it wrong). I like that it doesn’t give anything away. In terms of trailers I’d say it’s spot on – it’s NOT, in any way, a spoiler. It is the visual representation of a book’s synopsis. There’s the introduction of the protagonist, the tease of a romance, the mystery of What Happens Next. Perfectly balanced, unlike most blockbusters whose trailers show start, middle and end in 30 seconds. Referring back to the mention of foreplay you can see how unsatisfying such a trailer can be.

With this movie we see John’s success start to sky rocket. He’s already admired in the world of literature, redefining the Young Adult genre like Jo Rowling redefined Children’s Lit. I don’t think that’s an over the top judgement at all. Now his books are being spun into beautifully crafted films (if you haven’t watched The Fault in our Stars you should consider it) I am excited and nervous. Both because I love his books and am one of those people who fear success for the people I like because, to me, it makes it less real (I’m a strange person, I know!)(that’s also not to say I don’t want them to succeed, because I really do!) but with this popularity comes pressure and expectation and I don’t want John to be regarded as a Nicholas Sparks who, through no fault of his own, has become a whipping boy for the trials of book-to-film adaptations.

Still, despite the terrible movie poster (which will no doubt cover the newly printed books) and the deeply grating-slash-enjoyable accent by Cara Delevigne I’m really looking forward to seeing the characters and the story come to life and REALLY happy young adult is finally getting a look in for a genre worth encouraging.

Sam

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