Before I get to the actual review of this book I will just have to say that I am new to John Green. Oh, I've heard of his novel "The Fault of Our Stars" and do plan to read it at some point in time. I wanted to read this book since I had gone to a boarding school during my high school years, and I am always interested how other authors write about boarding schools. First off all, I had pretty high expectations (even though I know this is his first book he published) and this book didn't meet them. I wanted to like Alaska a lot, but let's be honest here...she was impulsive, selfish, and she didn't think a lot about other people's feelings. Now, I know she has some stuff going on when she was younger, but still...I couldn't understand how "Pudge" had an interest in her. I could understand he wanted to be someone different than before, but I am not sure exactly why Alaska. Then again, I do like that there are characters here who are not what you expect them to be. It's refreshing. It's just hard for me since if I step back into the shoes of my sixteen year old self I would never be friends with someone like her just because I was never into smoking, booze, or thought about sex all the time. I liked Chip quite a bit, but at times he could be annoying as well. I thought for a good while that this book was extremely juvenile and hard to believe at some points (no cell phones at a boarding school? Unless that boarding school happens to be a therapeutic boarding school or something that wouldn't be feasible since cell phones are important communication devices. It just doesn't make sense. Or how so many people were allowed to get away with booze in high school. College is one thing, but a boarding schools tend to have certain mechanisms set up such as room inspections to make sure school policy is being followed). I also found it extremely dramatic at times, not that boarding school's don't have a lot of drama because they do. They just don't have them all the time. Overall, I don't think this was the book for me. I didn't like the characters very much, even though towards the end there was some compelling scenes. I will read more of John Green because I do believe he is a pretty good writer, most of my problems with this book are idiosyncratic and I'm sure a lot of people won't have the same problems as I did.