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“Turtles All The Way Down” review

Grace Klebe, entertainment writer

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New York Times best-selling author John Green has done it again. It has been five years since Green released his last book, “The Fault in Our Stars”, and fans all over the world anxiously awaited the arrival of his newest book, “Turtles All the Way Down”, released on Oct. 10th, 2017. This book is centered around Asa, a 16-year-old girl who suffers from extreme anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Asa and her best friend, Daisy, set out to pursue the mystery of the billionaire Russell Pickett in hopes of winning a $100,000 reward. The reader follows Asa as she struggles with mental illness, boyfriends, best friends, family, mystery, and more.

This book paints an incredible picture of what it is like to live with mental illness. Green himself suffers from anxiety and OCD and drew much of his inspiration for this book from his own experiences. He describes ‘thought spirals’ which is the name given to when Asa gets lost in her thoughts, her brain leading her deeper and deeper until she loses control. He elaborated on this during his book tour at the Skip Viragh Center for the Arts on Oct. 20th. He talked about how he experiences these thought spirals as well and how he has dealt with them since he was a child. The honest, painful reality of what it means to live with mental illness is brought to the surface in this book.

While Green does an incredible job of portraying anxiety, OCD and thought spirals, he also delivers a compelling plot that keeps readers captivated. After the disappearance of Russell Pickett, Asa and her best-and-most-fearless friend, Daisy, embark on an adventure to find him. They are after the $100,000 reward, but they find much more along the way. The characters are very well developed, from Asa herself to her mother, everyone in this book has a prominent voice. The plot is also marvelously constructed as Green kept readers on their toes without moving too quickly. He wound together the scenes going on inside Asa’s head with everything going on around her beautifully, making connections between the world inside her head and the world outside her head flawlessly. The reader is strapped into an emotional rollercoaster from the very first line.

Green demonstrates his talent for storytelling and character development in some of his other popular books as well. In “The Fault in Our Stars”, he tells the story of two teenagers with cancer who fall in love and travel together to Amsterdam. Although these stories are different, Green does a fantastic job in both of showing how these kids under these circumstances truly feel.

I always have and always will be a fan of John Green’s books. I think he does a wonderful job writing young adult fiction that can reach people in every aspect of life. He creates unique, quirky characters that are at the same time very relatable. “Turtles All the Way Down” was an incredible book, and I think everyone should read it. I learned so much about mental illness, and so much about myself. John Green has done it again.

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“Turtles All The Way Down” review