Looking for Alaska

Miles Halter is fascinated by famous last words–and tired of his safe life at home. He leaves for boarding school to seek what the dying poet Francois Rabelais called the “Great Perhaps.” Much awaits Miles at Culver Creek, including Alaska Young. Clever, funny, screwed-up, and dead sexy, Alaska will pull Miles into her labyrinth and catapult him into the Great Perhaps.

Green was awarded the 2006 Michael L. Printz Award for Looking for Alaska. It is taught in many high school and college curricula and has been published in more than fifteen languages.

You can buy Looking for Alaska from your favorite retailer via the Penguin portal:

If you’ve read the book and are completely prepared for spoilers, visit the Looking for Alaska Questions page for much, much more information on the book.

Awards

Winner, 2006 Michael L. Printz Award
Finalist, 2005 Los Angeles Times Book Prize
2006 Top 10 Best Book for Young Adults
2006 Teens’ Top 10 Award
2006 Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers
A New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age
A Booklist Editor’s Choice Pick
Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Selection
Borders Original Voices Selection

Reviews (SPOILER ALERT!)

“Green…has a writer’s voice, so self-assured and honest that one is startled to learn that this novel is his first. The anticipated favorable comparisons to Holden Caufield are richly deserved in this highly recommended addition to young adult literature.”
-VOYA

“Like Phineas in John Knowles’ “A Separate Peace,” Green draws Alaska so lovingly, in self-loathing darkness as well as energetic light, that readers mourn her loss along with her friends.”
-School Library Journal, Starred Review

“The spirit of Holden Caulfield lives on.”
-KLIATT

{ 2648 comments… read them below or add one }

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Aileen Knight March 11, 2016 at 8:04 am

I would say I am your biggest fan but why to disappoint others. I absolutely love looking for Alaska. People absolutely don’t get it why I read that book but always one answer would make its way out of my mouth which is {WOW}.

That book is an inspiration to me and all other so don’t stop writing, your books inspired me and made me love every book I come across to. Not only books but nature too.

Your books somehow managed to smuggle in my heart and live there, my heart clenches when I read your books. Not only this one but no all of them, I haven’t read paper towns yet but I know it is a one great, fantastic book.

Princess_21
{Loyalty is not a thing to leave to be trusted}

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Julia Jordan March 18, 2016 at 1:12 pm

I agree with you so much. This book was beautifully written. God this book was pure gold. I have had a whole different perspective on things after i read John’s books.

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Apoorva Tadepalli March 11, 2016 at 4:47 pm

**Warning**
My comment contains spoilers, so please, please, please, do not read my comment if you have not read the book. Thank you.
************

I have recently read Looking For Alaska, and I do not understand why people my age like this book so much. Sure, there were some funny moments in the book, such as the time the Colo

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Julia Jordan March 18, 2016 at 1:19 pm

SPOILERS
You have to understand the message in the book. If you don’t get the message then you can’t have a love for the book. The message of the book is can you forgive someone if their already dead. Can you really tell a dead person that you forgive them of all the hurt they cause not only to yourself, but to friends and family. That is why the book is loved so much.

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Piper March 26, 2016 at 12:55 am

I feel that ever time I read a John Green book, I am questioning life for the next week! I just read LFA, and loved it. “I go to seek a great perhaps.” Now learning this from Mr. Green’s books, I’ve learned to go for adventure, and to enjoy the little things.

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Marta March 28, 2016 at 1:03 pm

I love you and I´m stupid

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kaci dodd March 29, 2016 at 8:51 pm

JOHN GREEN PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE MAKE A MOVIE ABOUT LOOKING FOR ALASKA PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE EMAIL ME if you have questions about making it a movie but please try please please i’m in love with this book

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Cibelly Ramalho April 1, 2016 at 3:08 pm

Incrível, intenso e profundo. Uma leitura prazerosa e que te faz questionar sobre a vida de uma maneira leve. vale muito a pena ler.

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raamlaa April 2, 2016 at 6:10 am

I REALLY LOVED THIS BOOK. i love how john green explains and makes us feel like we attend culver creek and uggghhh i love it. althouh alaska was a ughhhhhhhhhhhhhh whyyyyyyyyyy alska whyyyyyy!!!! we love you john green !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

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Hannah Lee April 2, 2016 at 7:40 pm

Dear John or anyone reading this that can answer my question:

I’m emailing the Marion County High School about the recent challenging of Looking for Alaska. I’ve been looking for how many people have read Looking for Alaska since it’s been published for about twenty minutes. If anyone has an answer, or if someone can direct me to a website, or both, please email me at beanfries@gmail.com or reply to this message.

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sha_j April 4, 2016 at 8:46 pm

i really enjoyed this book because the events that occur really do connect to our society whether its good or bad and i think that it is really important because it teaches us so many lessons. i love his writing style, he uses imagery and good vocabulary and so much more. i really enjoyed the book.

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sha_j April 4, 2016 at 8:51 pm

i think that this book was very good because the events that occur in the novel connect to our society today which is very important because it teaches us so many lessons and we can learn a lot. i love how John Green uses imagery and vocabulary because it makes the book so interesting.

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Alice April 5, 2016 at 10:03 am

Hello John Green! You are a MIND-BLOWING author !!!
I have read TFIOS, looking for Alaska , and Paper Towns. They are the best books ever and words cannot explain how much I enjoy reading your books. But if I had to choose key words they would be: Imaculate , flawless , and HOLY CRAP THIS IS GOOD! When I read your books I feel although my body is in a different place and I am actually IN the book.
In conclusion !: you are my favourite author !
Ps: Read this book
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Tatum W April 6, 2016 at 2:45 am

To John Green, I have read many of your books and loved them. AT school I am doing a project about you. I have recently read one of your books- Looking for Alaska and was wondering if you could answer some questions regarding the book.
Is the colonel and Miles still friends after they finish boarding school?
What does Alaska’s boyfriend do when she dies?
Regards, Tatum.W

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Enid April 8, 2016 at 8:10 am

hey john green…..I seriously liked this book a lot! Honestly! But the thing is, you do write a little obscene scenes in your books…..i mean, seriously, are they even stories for young adults like us if you write such scenes? But, forget that, the story was amazing…..loved it, i got damn attached to the characters and hated it when Alaska died. Seriously, its hard to believe it was your first book. But it doesnt rock as much as The Fault in our stars….OBVIOUSLY…..

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Miranda April 8, 2016 at 4:11 pm

Omg I love your books so much but I wonder where do you get your ideas

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Jemima April 11, 2016 at 5:11 pm

I suppose you could say that i am just a little bit obsessed with Looking for Alaska! Actually i am just obsessed with all of your books to be honest! This has to be my favourite though – what made it for me was the quote at the start “never use a highlighter in my books” so of course, i highlighted every part of this book which i found interesting and every memorable quote. My other favourite being “y’all smoke for fun, i smoke to die” and also “I may die young but at least i’ll die smart”. Ever since i first picked up this book, it’s been my favourite and i can’t help it but now every time i see it in a library or if someone else i know has it then i just can’t help myself but pick it up, grab a highlighter, and re-read nd re-highlight it all over again!

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Diana April 13, 2016 at 4:18 pm

Hi! I don’t know if you read all comments, but I wanted try: I love all you write, every word, only not in your books, anything you write it’s fantastic to me. I think you write amazing things. You change my life and I just want “thank you”.
I hope you read this, and I hope you come to México sometime.
(My english isn’t so good, and I’m sorry).

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Miranda Haney April 13, 2016 at 10:57 pm

If you had to choose your last words what would they be ? Not to anyone in particular, but just in general ?

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noraine puengan April 21, 2016 at 1:23 pm

Honestly, I was devastated when Alaska died. Maybe you knew that a lot of your reader will feel bad when you wrote it right? I just finished your book. I know your book was all about still having hope whenever everything is falling apart. Still having that strong faith in whatever religion you have. But still…you’re really a good author because you know how to make people thrill with these last words. You made me fall in love with Alaska too, even though she was a bitch couple of times in the scenarios of the book. But seriously, I just wanted to tell you that…when I was reading your book, I was like Pudge or should I say Miles…hopelessly inlove with Alaska and because of having a hang-over from your book not really in a strawberry hill wine or whatever it was…I’m still figuring a way of out from the Labyrinth of Looking for Alaska. Help me.

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Bliss Brewer April 23, 2016 at 7:06 pm

I just wanted to say thank you. I am an avid reader and have thoroughly enjoyed all of your books. I love how you paint teenaged people in the complex and wonderful way they exist. The reason I’m so grateful for this novel in particular, is not because it changed my life (witch it did), but because it got my sister to start reading.
I’ve tried and failed many times to get her intrested in a book I love. The frustration of not being able to share a big part of my life with her has always troubled me. Our relationship reminds me, in many ways, of you and Hank, and I hope that some day we can collectively acomplish half of what y’all do.
I write this today because around a week ago she casually mentioned to me that she thought about asking my recomendation for a book to read. I immediately became overly excited and racked my brain for the perfect book as to not ruin my one chance. I first thought of The Fault in Our Stars, my favorite book of yours, but she has seen the movie and I thought knowing the plot might bore her. I had the same problem with Paper Towns.
I know from your YouTube channel that the movie rights to Looking for Alaska have given you some trouble. I’m sorry for any pain it has brought you knowing that you don’t have any say in the making of the movie, but I wanted you to know that it has come to some good.
I recommended Looking for Alaska to my sister and she read it and loves it. I honestly don’t think she would have read it if she had seen the movie.
Being able to share even one book with her means more to me than you can imagine.
So thank you John Green, thank you.

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Emily Breach April 23, 2016 at 9:09 pm

Ever since reading “Looking for Alaska” two years ago, I’ve been writing down any amusing, memorable, or random quotes people I know have said since I find them insanely fascinating. I do this due to the fact that what people say is one of the best ways to explain a person’s personality. I was inspired to do this because Miles in “Looking for Alaska” finds people’s last words to be interesting. Over the last few years I’ve collected over a hundred quotes. Some of my favorite quotes include: “My sister threatened to throw salt at me once and I replied ‘Are you gonna as-salt me”, “I’m gonna break your hashtag”, “It went all lord of the flies in half an hour(referring to when a teacher didn’t show up for class)”, ” You learn better from each other then from me … I have you analyze books in groups in order for you to develop your own way of finding meaning within literature (why my English teacher lets us do mostly small group analysis instead of telling us what the meaning of a book is meant to be)”, “If I was able to hibernate, I would do it easily(random kid in hallway”, “Hard work doesn’t always pay off quickly, but somehow, someway it’s worth it even if it’s not recognizable at the moment”,”Juliet’s funeral part two, the after party (referring to conversation about Romeo and Juliet”, “Hard work ” I regret that I have but one stomach to fill”, “great Emilys think alike”, “It’s a side comment not a conversation” “Irrelevant sock dude” “No one is going to buy your lemonade children”, “How is this helping my homeostasis?”, “This is either going to be the stupidest thing I’ve ever said or the most brilliant thing ever”, “Lester Holt has a secret ponytail, I swear”, “Step back I’ve got a toothbrush”, “White chocolate is nasty and is a crime to humanity” and “My foot looks like an oyster”. As you can see, the quotes aren’t all amazingly brilliant meaningful collections of word, but the fact that they make me laugh and have a story behind them is what makes them extremely special. Hopefully this anecdote I’ve written hasn’t completely wasted your time. Also I would like to thank you for writing many amazing books that have contributed to shaping me into the person I am today and have aided me in getting through rough patches in my life. I have read all your books (except “Will Grayson, Will Grayson” which I hope to one day read). My favorite book of all that you have written is “Looking for Alaska”. My favorite scenes that you have written all involve the road trip in “Papertowns”. I read this part of the book in the car while my mother was driving and I was snort-laughing so much that she had to pull over the car. More specifically, the scenes that brought on this reaction were when Ben peed in the beer can, and when Ben and Radar were wearing nothing but graduation gowns so they had to wear the hilarious t-shirts. Radar’s shirt is what made me laugh for a couple minutes straight. Anyways I can not properly explain my gratitude, but again I am crazy thankful for all the laughs from all your books and youtube videos.

Yours, with great admiration,
Emily Anne Breach

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Adriana romero April 24, 2016 at 10:13 pm

A mi sinceramente me encanto porque no se me refleja y refleja lo que pasa en la vida en especial la de un adolescente , tengo 14 años ahora entiendo que todo el mundo se encuentra atrapado en un laberinto que cada uno forma con sus actos que derecho y rápido no es la mejor obsion que la imprudencia e odiarse a si misma no es lo mejor que a pesar de los promeblas que pueda pasar y que lleguemos al punto de no poder mas porque y sentir ese odio y ese rincor hacia nosotros mismo no es lo mejor que hay que perdonarse uno mismo, y a pesar de todo siempre llegara el olvido pero mientras la espera lenta del olvido almenos el recuerdo vano cuanta.
No se si lo que digo sea micho pasara lo que esten leyendo eso no se no soy la mejor haciendo es mas es la primera ves que ago esto pero, sinceramente es uno de los mejores libros. Felicitaciones!

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Emma April 25, 2016 at 11:09 am

This book is truly amazing. Green has a way of describing each nessasary detail. His fictional characters become somebody you know while reading these. You feel an instant attachment to these made-up people.

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