I have said on my previous entries about how Looking For Alaska by John Green basically stabbed me right in the heart and crushed my soul into bits and pounded whatever that’s left of me until I cease to exist in this world because it’s just so sad. I’ve also mentioned that this is my favorite book. And right now is a special day because it’s the day we celebrate Alaska Young’s existence. Part of this is talking about it here. Also, I’m reminding everyone before carrying on, make sure that you have read the book because this entry might contain spoilers.
So, I remember buying this back in December 2012, I cannot make up my mind which between this book and Abundance of Katherines should I buy first. So I asked my friend to help me out and she told me to choose Looking for Alaska because it sounded mysterious. At that time, I was a bit skeptical because the title was not that interesting for me because I thought that the name “Alaska” meant the place (I didn’t read the plot line at the back because I had trust issues with it).
I thought it was a book about these group of friends traveling to Alaska where they deal with issues as they go along the journey. And with that plot, it just sounded dull to me. I didn’t understand myself for not noticing the smoke at the cover that was supposed to give me the hint that it’s not that kind of book. But I bought it since it won’t make a difference anyway because I was planning to collect John Green books because that is my responsibility as a nerdfighter to support a fellow nerdfighter.
One of the things why I like the book is because all the experiences that Pudge ever had with Alaska, even the private ones, are parallel to my memories of her as a reader. His knowledge of her is as limited as mine because we both have been with her for only a short while. With that, we both feel the insufficiency of information about her and the thought of not remembering enough memories with her (because there’s no more memories to remember) is depressing especially we both felt in love with her the moment we saw her.
And the reason of her being a lovable character?
The description the plot line had for Alaska was “the gorgeous, clever, funny, sexy, self-destructive, screwed-up and utterly fascinating Alaska Young”. That being said, we can already imagine she’s the perfectly flawed girl you want to make out with. Pudge’s feelings for her made his descriptions of her a lot more beautiful that she probably is so we cannot really tell if how Pudge had seen Alaska is how we would see her if we ever meet her in person. But that thought, does not really stop me from liking her because I think I don’t really have any other choice because that is how she was etched in my mind and that is how I would probably remember her forever.
Plus, she’s got this really awesome name you want to name your daughter after.
And then she dies. And the feeling of Pudge’s loss is so fucking familiar to me that we are almost the same person. And coping with that loss is as hard as it is in real life when you lose someone because you’ve felt enough love to Alaska so you felt enough pain when you lose her despite of her being fictional. And then I just cried. Silent and hard. Yes, I mourned over the loss of a fictional character. And I felt I missed her. wtf.
And after all those words about seeking the great perhaps and escaping the labyrinth of suffering, I got preoccupied with it and I would constantly stare blankly and think about it. and that drove me nuts.
The book does not contain revelations like Augustus’ cancer come back nor the mind blowing graphs like Colin’s obsession with dumpers and dumpees nor the clues left to Q’s journey to find the girl he loved. The book for me, is a narration of how we would feel when someone close to us goes. And that’s the reason why I love it because it’s close to the reality of loss.
That might not make sense but I fucking loved the book.