Tad The Turtle It’s Okay To Be Different

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If you were writing formally you would probably use one of the other expressions. But it is certainly fair game for sports or political diatribes. I recall being exceptionally irritated back in the 80s when "a tad" suddenly became ubiquitous in the rapidly-growing context of personal computing magazines. For several years, I never saw it anywhere else, but I used to subscribe to several such magazines, and they all used it. At the time I assumed perhaps one freelance writer who contributed to several titles just happened to like the expression. By the 90s it was commonplace in most mass-market magazines, and for the last decade and more I've become accustomed to hearing it in speech too.

It's often used where a speaker wants to distract attention from the substance of what's being said by using slightly "quirky" wording - no-one knows exactly how much a tad is, so it could be anything from "a detectable but non-problematic amount" to "far too much". I'll also point out that the rise of "a tad bit" mirrors the decline of "a tidy bit". Clearly this casts "tad" as a different part of speech adjective rather than noun , which to my mind strongly suggests we're dealing with a neologistic usage rather than something "continuous" from the original sense.

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site the association bonus does not count. Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead? Home Questions Tags Users Unanswered. I'm told that a "tad" is, in astronomer's parlance, slang for ten parsecs, but sadly I can't find any reference for that. Similarly ironic measurement names might include "barn" and "shake" to mean ten-to-the-power-minus-twenty-four square centimetres and ten nanoseconds respectively.

A little is a bit more than a tad. The current usage dates from the If you were writing formally you would probably use one of the other expressions. And so, as I continue to use that line of defense against his wildly loyal, unaging group of geeky manic pixie dream girls in training, I continue to argue myself into reading his books.

And oh boy do I suffer in return. This is, unfortunately, not a The Fault in Our Stars type situation. This book is not just John Green using cancer as an excuse to make teens fall in love with each other in a way that is profound and sad, or John Green using a missing person to make teens fall in love with each other in a way that is profound and sad, or What is it with John Green and missing people??? Sorry, first runner-up John Mulaney! Back to the point I lost roughly a thousand years ago.

Specifically a combination of anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Which John Green has. It makes the whole review-writing thing a tad more complicated though. Because, like. Not because of the mental illness rep. Because the rep is good. My life is so hard , you guys. The fangirls are going to come for me so bad. The mental illness rep was good. But also it was still a John Green book and I strongly disliked the process of reading it and, in fact, was forced into a reading slump so hard that it feels like while I was reading this my brain was gently removed from my skull and replaced with a small mound of cotton balls.

I have still not recovered. Also: this book needs a huge huge huge huge huge huge HUGE trigger warning for self-harm. Five percent. Thirty-seven minutes. Our protagonist, Aza, has a dinky little car named Harold. This is me attempting to be generous as I wonder why John Green could possibly have included so many iterations of the exact same joke. I mean, are you serious? A coupon? In an establishment often predicated on deals and savings? Get out of here, you zany teens. I know a lot of people love John Green for his writing.

I am not one of those people, obviously, for the established reason that I find him unbearably pretentious, but many of them exist. But like. Why, guys? Why do you love him? This book could be a master class in the use of the passive voice. But enough of that. Let me just do a liiiiittle bit of quoting. Zero, right? Aza clearly says the whole thing was reduced to one sentence. Anyway, I could keep quoting and quoting these increasingly unbelievable sentences but what would be the point? I hate the way this is written and some people love it and here we are.

At an impasse.

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Not even a bad impasse. This is all, to me, sentiments alternately ordinary and slightly off disguised under the massive weight of gaudy phrasing. Also, this is literally so over-described that John Green forgets his own descriptions. DID HE? For the record, he who does fear death also dies only once, but whatever. Is this a deliberate misinterpretation of the quote??? Is this on-purpose dumb??? The sky is everything. And last night, it was enough.

What is anyone? Me: I is the hardest word to define. How teens text! Is this a Forever 21 graphic tee from ? What is happening right now? I suggest you do the same. Which, as someone who has declared the aforementioned man my nemesis, is a complete positive. But rather than being pretentious and overwrought and all of those things that make John Green John Green, it was boring.

So the introduction of highbrow philosophies related in their polished entirety about a fifth of the way through was almost a relief. A lot of this was not typical John Green, but also so much of it was??? The Missing Person thing, for example. The not-white friend is not the one who occasionally kisses our white protagonist which is to say, this romance is Caucasian As Hell.

You know. Just a touch behind on the diversity memo, outside of the excellent neurodiversity. My other kinda-nice thing is also very irrational and super unfair: I wish that John Green wrote a memoir about his particular mental illness. All the pretension and boring-ness and overwrought language and whatnot is all fun and games to me. Here it is. You watch them try to fill themselves up with booze or money or God or fame or whatever they worship, and it all rots them from the inside until nothing is left but the money or booze or God they thought would save them.

I am not here for this Peter Pan adolescent-glorification egotism. Every single face you see in your entire life is representative of a person who has lived a life. Who has suffered. We all live and think and feel. And so, gang: I think he and I are done. View all comments. Christine Your review just spoke my thoughts about this book! The ending was rushed and was all squeezed in a chapter. May 28, PM. I agree, but Jesus fuck the portrayal of OCD was so accurate. Eerily accurate. Self is a plurality, but pluralities can also be integrated, right?

Think of a rainbow. Looking back, there were definitely certain aspects that I thought were done well, but I just didn't enjoy either the story or the uber-philosophical writing. Given that I consider three stars to be a mostly positive rating, I'm going with two. Turtles All the Way Down is really only for those looking for deep cell-level evaluation of human consciousness and personhood. To give him some credit, Green captures Aza's needling anxiety and compulsions very well. That little inner voice of doubt that causes you to question things you know until maybe you're not so sure is spot on.

It's everything else around Aza's inner turmoil that feels like what it is - filler. It could very easily have been an interesting portrait of OCD and anxiety, but attempts to add a bizarre subplot of a missing billionaire who is also the father of her childhood friend, Davis don't disguise the fact that nothing really happens. I am not opposed to an introspective novel, especially in YA contemporary dealing with mental illness, but I cannot figure out why the author decided to add such a disjointed and nonsensical side story to the mix.

Unless, of course, it is yet another "deep metaphor" for the nonsensical nature of anxiety, but I would have found Aza's story far stronger without it. The ludicrous and boring plot acts as a superficial backdrop for Green to play out the usual "super precocious teens having philosophical conversations. If that makes sense. And I think maybe deep down I am just an instrument that exists to turn oxygen into carbon dioxide, just like merely an organism in this.

I had very little patience with hipster teens being hipster back when I was the age of these characters; I have even less now.


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I don't know why Green has to create such annoyingly unrealistic carbon copies of himself. Even secondary characters like Daisy quickly become annoying - calling Aza "Holmesy" in literally every sentence she speaks is extremely irritating. Him: Then what am I? Me: Maybe. Him: Great. It's not even right to say these characters don't talk like teenagers because that makes it sound like teens can't possibly be this smart and they definitely can , but these characters just don't talk like any people I've ever encountered anywhere.

Of any age. They sound like what I imagine old buddhist monks to sound like. Green takes steps toward exploring the painful reality of living with a mental illness that deeply affects your everyday life and wellbeing, but it's sad that he pulls it back into the land of pretentious philosophical mumbo jumbo. For a while there, it felt real to me, and then it just became John Green talking to himself about the universe and the nature of "self". I guess I have to accept that early John Green - the kind who wrote Paper Towns - is a thing of the past.

Blog Facebook Twitter Instagram Youtube D How do i read this book? Can you please help me i have no idea what i am doing. Mar 27, AM. Oct 11, Ariel rated it it was amazing Shelves: favourites , reviewed-on-booksunbound. Have I overdone it? Each novel seems to be repeating some unspoken pattern, or at least trying to make something new out of the same ingredients. He treats his teenagers like adults because they are adults, or nearly are, and at the very least deserve the same respect as adults. Her anxiety and mental health continue to be an unrelenting problem in the narrative because they are an unrelenting problem in her narrative.

You do just want to reach into the pages and give her a shake, or a hug, and tell her to please get better. Or not forever. I have a particular love for the ending. My dad and I agree that watching a good movie is more fun the second time. Now you know that every thing is going to be all right and you can just relax and enjoy it. I went into the ending so nervous that it would be cheesy, or unrealistically hopeful, or really unnecessarily sad. I was so surprised by an ending that moved on from being a teenager, looked at a life beyond teenage hood, that I nearly cried. It was something I told my brother constantly when he was still in high school and I had gone on to University and suddenly had to try and remember how hard high school had been.

A note on technology: I feel very strongly about the use of technology in YA. John Green does the impossible here: he manages to include technology organically, to make it important to the story and to their lives, but without making it gimmicky. For that, I am also thankful. Finally, I am thankful for this representation of mental health. It is ugly, sad, disturbing, frustrating, but not hopeless. I am so happy, so unbelievably happy, that kids and teenagers and also adults will have this. That they will read it and feel understood, or empathize, or both.

Full disclosure: I read an early version of the book and worked with John Green and his editor, and my name is in the acknowledgments! The posting of this review is unrelated to the work I did! View all 45 comments. My mind can't really wrap around that. Especially given where I was 5 years ago, not even knowing BookTube existed, now I can't imagine my life without BookTube and being Hailey in Bookland. But it was a pleasure to read his writing again. He is extremely talented. I was super nervous going into this admittedly. Especially as I haven't absolutely loved all of his novels, I just didn't know where this one would fall for me.

But I'm so happy that I loved it. It's definitely my favourite YA book on mental illness that I've ever read. He doesn't discount teenagers as unintelligent due to their developing brains. He recognizes that teenagers, IRL, are able to comprehend complex concepts. This may seem obvious, but I read a book on writing books for young readers recently and it emphasizes the fact that you have to use the most simplistic language possible so young teenage minds can understand it.

Teenagers are not dumb. Because of this, his characters are so startlingly relatable. I think Aza is an especially relatable character for me with her struggles with anxiety. The way JG describes her experiences with anxiety spoke to me so intensely. Specifically the metaphor of the spiral. Blew my mind in all honesty.

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JG definitely has a talent for metaphors, I never get sick of it. He's always had a way of finding the perfect words to describe that which seems indescribable. Seeing him use this technique regarding mental illness was fascinating. I think if you do, or ever have, suffered from mental illness, you will vastly appreciate his narrative. I found this story to be very different than JG's other novels. Not in a bad way at all, but the plot was much more subtle.

There are two plots happening simultaneously really, one internally and one externally. You think you're following the one and then it turns out the other is the central focus. The way the two were interwoven was genius. I think this has been written in a way that will appeal to both the next generation of YA readers as well as the aging generation of YA readers.

Typically JG's novels have the romance as a main focal point, and they really are some of my favourite romances, but here the romance takes a back seat. The front seat is occupied by Aza's own personal mental health journey. It was such a nice change. That's not to say there is no romance, it's there but it's just not the main topic. It was the most authentic representation of mental illness I've ever read and I'm so glad I went in with an open mind. You can tell he is writing about something he's extremely familiar with. I can't wait to see what he comes out with next I hope he has plans to write more!

View all 27 comments. Even though I just finished this book, I already know it's one that will stick with me for years to come. I can't fully express how cathartic this book was. I finally saw parts of myself represented in a novel - the parts that I was ashamed of and pretended didn't exist. This is by far my favorite John Green novel. I can't say much more about this because I'm still sobbing over it. Just read it, please. View all 13 comments. Oct 14, Hannah rated it it was amazing Shelves: favorites.

View all 12 comments. Let us play a little game called "What could this book possibly about? His early work would suggest that he prefers warm places, but over the years he has slowly migrated to the Midwest. We can assume that this time it will be set on the sun, for the conditions are best for cultivating our feels, and destroying our hope. Next, we can examine the characters. They must be the perfect combination of witty, socially awkward, beautiful, and of course, bu Let us play a little game called "What could this book possibly about? They must be the perfect combination of witty, socially awkward, beautiful, and of course, burdened with a great amount of tragedy and overwrought with pain.

I'm guessing ex-convict and clown. Good pairing The plot is tricky, you see, for this varies greatly book to book. The spectrum is quite wide.


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I'm going to guess it'll be a complex story that weaves together the lives of the ex-convict who becomes the first great poet in years, and the young circus clown who keeps having dreams of the constellation Hercules. Yes, this sounds about right. I think they will need to save the world from llamas. And the romance. One mustn't forget the romance. All you really need to know is it will break your heart. So, if I have guessed correctly, this book will be about a past criminal mastermind and a clown, living on the sun.

Together they will stop llamas from taking over the universe. Or, y'know, worst comes to worst and it's twilight fanfiction. This is clearly about wimbleton and its philosophical after effects. View all 39 comments. View all 10 comments. This book was, well I went into this with somewhat high hopes. I knew it was about a girl with anxiety issues and - as someone who struggled with a lot of anxiety as a hormone-ridden, depressed teen who lost a parent at a young age myself, much like Aza I expected to really connect with this story. At least on some level.

One reviewer I follow even ranked this as her top read of Said it was "life changing. To each their own 2 Stars To each their own and all that jazz - truly, I'm happy other people got something out of this book -but, in my opinion, for something to change my life - or at least remotely affect me in any way - it has to have at least some depth to it.

And this book had about as much depth as the shallow end of the kiddie pool. Now, I realize that I - a 35 year old woman - am not the targeted demographic for this book, but still There has to be at least some point to a book. Character development But this book? Had basically no plot. No true character development that I can see And perhaps the most simplistic "moral of the story" I've ever seen.

So let me save you a few bucks or a trip to the library and just give you what amounts to the entire point of this book here: Ready? Yep, that's pretty much it. I find people with OCD are more likely to relate to Aza Oct 18, C. Drews rated it it was amazing Shelves: read , 5-star , best-of , contemporary , young-adult , mental-illness. I'm actually floored by how good it was. I mean, I haven't read a "new" John Green novel in forever, but this is worth the wait. I wasn't actually nervous going in.

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It really really hit home so hard for me. I loved it.

Is It Okay To Be Different?

OK note on the title: I see a lot of people complaining about the lack of turtles and like It's a metaphor!! The title of the book being a metaphor is like perfect. I mean no one complained about the towns not being made of actual paper in Paper Towns so I don't even get how everything thinks this is different.

Excuse me. I have an enthusiasm for this book. Bit slow but really really good. I loved that it wasn't rife with cliches or annoying tropes. It was just so pure almost. It felt actually real. It's not really a "detective" story I thought it was going to be?? She does a bit of digging, but she does more investigative work on Davis. She probably hardly ever talks and she's very much locked in her own head. Because be in your own head if you want, I say. I appreciated that she's quiet and that she thinks a lot. She's obviously extremely intelligent. Let's talk about the stars and metaphors and what poetry means and the infinite possibilities of death and life.

The sheer amount of knowledge these kids spew out is just refreshing and perfect to me. I am HERE for smart people. Also because I'm not one so it'sl ike??? Let me osmosis the intelligence. The only thing I'm angry about is that the word "OCD" is never used. I'm the kind of person who wants to KNOW and have solid answers. And I think OCD should've been stated because This is the real and brutal version of OCD. And the fact that we get like the thought-spirals and the psychology behind it is what is the BEST in my opinion. And that's freaking important ok.

Like how dare she say that stuff. Like being friends with Aza is "exhausting" and Aza doesn't care etc. And at the end they just forgive each other. I think Daisy should've had a little more comeuppance for that. Because saying stuff liek that to a mentally ill person underlines the horrible ideas that: a mentally ill people are too much work, and b you're being a gift from god to befriend them.

Still mostly a good female-to-female- frienship that WASN'T built on obsessing over boys or being catty! It was like SUCH a cute romance. Like it talks psychology a lot and some of the metaphors were really intense and like wow. It was so layered. I mean. It's a John Green novel. I'm not used to this I need to sit down. It's sad and it's not sugar coated. Your mental illness isn't ALL of you, but it is some of you.

And as someone who has anxiety disorders too, I really appreciated this. I appreciated the whole heckin' book. Anybody can look at you. It's quite rare to find someone who sees the same world you do. View all 32 comments. Nov 13, Emma Giordano rated it it was amazing. If I leave this review blank for now, I may force myself to film a video review which I really want to do!

Yes please do a video review Apr 03, AM. Logan May any recommendations of books that are similar to this one? Jun 10, AM. Rating 3. Heck, I went into it pretty much expecting to dislike.

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I hated The Fault in Our Stars , with all of its extremely pretentious characters although I did cry at the end, and actually liked the movie. I then left Looking for Alaska , halfway through after a friend spoiled the ending thanks a lot, Megan! And you know what? I liked it. I actually, genuinely liked it. This book is classic John Green. You got the two teenagers from well to do families who sit around contemplating the meaning of the universe with all the knowledge and wisdom of college philosophy professors and the vocabulary of a SAT test book.

And yet, in spite of all of these things, I actually enjoyed this one. So, the story is about Aza, a girl dealing with spiraling thoughts that are entirely out of her control. She feels trapped and bullied by her mind as her anxiety takes over. And yet, she tries her best to be a good friend and daughter and to live the life she wishes she had.

I know firsthand how hard it can be to deal with invasive thoughts. I know that sometimes the mind seems like a different entity from the self and John Green wonderfully showed all the thoughts going through her head. More so, he did it in a way that properly displayed mental illness. I liked the romance also, although at points it was a little too philosophical for my taste.

I liked that the world goes on and good things happen and sometimes bad things happen. I also like the way that mental illness is portrayed as affecting not just the individual but also those around them. I loved seeing how family and friendships are tested and yet remain. Truly, I think that it was all brilliantly done and I must say, kudos to John Green because I could actually relate.

So, why not a higher rating? Well, this book felt like it was trying too hard. It was too many things. It took a great story and stretched it out to the point that the plot seemed thin. It felt out of focus and it greatly diminished my liking of it. I think it could have had a greater emotional impact if it had focused on only one thing, either Aza and her troubles, or Davis and his missing father.

It could either be a look into mental illness or a mystery. Or, it could be both if it were longer and found a way to combine the two. But, alas, it did not. Overall, I really enjoyed it and totally recommend. I am actually looking forward to whatever John Green writes next. Let me know what you thought!

View all 35 comments. You're a you. You're a she, an it, a they. My kingdom for an I. I feel at a loss for words to describe my experience while reading this book; I've seen multiple reviews state they felt Turtles All the Way Down wasn't even on the same level as The "You're a we. I feel at a loss for words to describe my experience while reading this book; I've seen multiple reviews state they felt Turtles All the Way Down wasn't even on the same level as The Fault in Our Stars , and I have to agree.

While this wasn't a BAD story per se, it didn't feel up to the John Green standard we've come to expect. Multiple times I was stopped by randoms at the gym asking how it was, because it was on their wish list, and I could never muster anything more than "This book is fine.

Fine is what it is. It is not great, but it is fine" and I felt guilty for that. For such a short book with big font and little chapters and lots of spacing between lines, this book sure was slow in the first half. I believe he was going for atmospheric, but when I think of setting the tone in a slow building way, I think of descriptive writing that can be filled with prose or not, but definitely something that draws me in and makes me feel a part of the story, and that's not what happens here.

The narrative is very jerky and disjointed, and it took awhile for my brain to become engaged enough to care what was happening. I think the premise of this book, minus the billionaire side story but I'll get to that in a minute , was excellent. I love YA books featuring mental health issues and illnesses and this was by far the strongest aspect of the plot. I didn't find Aza likable in the beginning, but I feel that was the point so that we could form a connection with her as she grows and becomes aware of herself in new ways. Honestly, I really could have done without the awkward side story of Davis and Noah's missing father.

I didn't feel it added to the story; actually, I felt it took away from some of the more important factors since it stole coverage where those pages could have been used to further the main focus. I couldn't help but wonder what felt off, and I think it came down to a rushed characterization of Davis, Aza, and their relationship.

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It almost felt as if chunks of the story were missing and we were just supposed to fill it in our own way. I would have liked a little more development, but that's just me. I did feel the ending was another strong point; it was messy, uncomfortable, and slightly disturbing, but added a gleaming spark of hope and a viewpoint of recovery for those struggling with various mental health issues and disorders. Please don't toss this book aside and chose not to read it just because it didn't wow me; I think it has some very valuable insight into a very tough subject that is still taboo in There are plenty of 5 star reviews that are much better than mine and I hope you enjoy it more fully than I did.

Maybe I'm getting too old for this type of YA contemporary or maybe I'm just out of touch with how teenagers behave and converse, so I think I'll just say that it was fine, but the over hyping of this book pre-production may have done more harm than good for the die hard fans. View all 41 comments. You're the storyteller and the story told. You are somebody's something, but you are also your you. I devoured it in under a day! I couldn't leave it down even though I had studying to do. I was there, with Aza, feeling what she was feeling, understanding even though I don't suffer from it, wanting to "heal" her even though I know I couldn't.

Thi 4. This book was so deep too deep for teenagers but that's John Green for ya and it entailed so many excellent quotes that cut deep into me. The other characters were brilliant, too even though Daisy just pissed me off at times , the Star Wars references were cute, being a SW nerd myself, I relate even though the Rey x Chewbacca parts were sort of weird and I think he did his research a lot for this book. I'm so looking forward to the movie I heard that is coming out, a John Green book not becoming a movie would be a first I hope they do it justice.

It was the first of his books I read before the movie comes out not because of the movie so I'm really curious to see what their angle will be about it. View all 11 comments. Edit: Well, I cannot stop thinking about this book, and it's been a few weeks, so that deserves me upping my rating to 5 stars.

It has resonated with me more than I thought it would. This book was stunning. Hard to read trigger warnings for OCD and anxiety , but Jesus, did it feel healing at the same time. John Green wrote the shit out of this book. The way mental health was portrayed through Aza was excruciating, harro Edit: Well, I cannot stop thinking about this book, and it's been a few weeks, so that deserves me upping my rating to 5 stars.

The way mental health was portrayed through Aza was excruciating, harrowing and educational to read about and it still made me feel that though the stigma might have lessened a bit, the understanding of this subject is narrow.

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I felt this book to my core. I was there with Aza when she was spiralling out of control, her mind constantly pulling her in different directions, finding no centre, the constant doubt hurling you further into finding no fixed point, so that you may breathe and focus. I've so much admiration for Green for writing so openly in this book. It was so raw and bleak and the ugly side of mental health truly came to live, because that's how it is and what it can manifest into. And though, it may seem difficult to find hope, a way to see the light at the end of the tunnel that seems never-reaching, it is there.

It is tangible and can be found. View all 24 comments. It's quite rare to find someone who sees the same world you see. View all 7 comments. And it tasted good. It's been a while since John wrote a book. During the time that passed until the release of Turtles All the Way Down I caught up with most of his other books, apart from An Abundance of Katherines. But I'm glad I did. The plot wasn't all the exciting. I saw lots of people complain about an absence of plot, but some stories are more character-driven than others, as in this case.

Apart from this, there were lots of subplots that I loved - Daisy's relationship with Mychal for once, or the disappearance of Pickett Senior. The characters were fantastic. First and foremost there is Aza, a teenage girl battling with anxiety. While she did not say much, I enjoyed her narratorial point of view. She was a fleshed out character with lots of depth, which is such an improvement to John's previous main characters that were part boring and part even more boring.

Now, I don't struggle with an anxiety disorder. I can't possibly judge this novel from that perspective because I never experienced anything similar to what Aza struggles with on a daily basis. But this book managed to make me feel what a person with an anxiety disorder might possibly have to go through - so much that I could only skim the parts where the main character's anxiety surfaces and takes over all her thoughts and actions.

With Daisy, Aza's best friend, it was love at first sight. This girl is precious. I loved everything about her. I never warmed up Davis, Aza's love interest, if that is what you want to call him. I don't think that I fully got him and I'm not entirely sure why Aza was drawn to him. On one hand, their relationship lacked romance, on the other hand, I'm glad that this was not one big love story. It would not have fit into the story. Overall I simply liked this novel.

Money was one of the story's central themes, and while I'm both uncomfortable with and in awe of this unfathomable wealth depicted in it, I also deeply connected with Daisy, when she talked about what being poor can be like. Of course, wealth and poverty are extremely subjective topics and people hate to talk about money, but I think John Green managed to find a good balance. Find more of my books on Instagram Click here to watch a video review of this book on my channel, From Beginning to Bookend.


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