All member reviews for Looking for Alaska

Common Sense Media says

Award-winning novel of life and death, for older teens.

Users say

(out of 171 reviews)
age 14+
Review this title!
Teen, 14 years old Written bykara b. June 15, 2012

To read or not to read?

I really like this book. I read it and I'm 14 and I'm a freshman in high school. It's kind of blunt when it comes to smoking and drinking and sex. But it isn't anything I haven't heard at school or in health class. I probably wouldn't recommend it to anyone under the age of twelve. It's one of my favorites books and it's one that I can actually re-read. I also like the fact that Pudge and the Colonel both memorize some really cool things and I love how many books Alaska has. I also really like how Alaska got her name.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 13 years old Written bykcorreiakfc March 4, 2011

Perfect for kids going into there teens

What other families should know
Too much consumerism
Educational value
Teen, 15 years old Written byAmbrosette December 27, 2009

TEENS HAVE BRAINS

What I love about this book is the fact that it shows reality -sex, underage drinking - and also is deeply mentally challenging with the whole labyrinth, and Great Perhaps and the meaning of life... And this is why I read it. John Green tells the story beautifully and it really made me think. And as for concerned parents, if your kid reads in today's society, she/he is smart enough to differ from morally right and morally wrong. That being said, enjoy the reading. Yes, it goes to you.
What other families should know
Educational value
Teen, 14 years old Written byrssk6801 July 23, 2015
So I read this book when I was 12 and was actually really disappointed with it... I feel like this was just one of those teen love stories which all have the same plot and are really predictable. It does have some strong sex scenes (blow job and intended sex) and has mild swearing. The only other thing that's iffy is the drug use (snorting marihuana and smoking). I was considered a mature 12 year old and I was fine with it so I think 12 and up is fine.
Teen, 13 years old Written bymangoRSL April 20, 2014

Trash, Garbage, Simply JUNK!

Okay, to start out- spoiler. The main character DIES. Who on EARTH would want to waste their time reading a book where the main character dies. Actually, wait- people have to have been reading it, because Mr. Green and his Vlog account have been making a whole lot of money off of his kill-the-main-character franchise. Second, the stuff in it. Okay, sure there is some stupid positive message hidden somewhere in it,but not where kids can grasp it. But what kids DO get from it is the sex, the drugs, the drinking, the smoking- all the stuff that make Ms. Alaska here "cool". It's like shouting out "Drink Alcohol at age 16!" And plus, none of the characters are real, even in the fictional sense. They seem to be a way for John Green to get his opinion across where people will read it, and think, "Hey, this dude is so deep- let's subscribe to his vlog account and tell everyone how deep he is!" Which, by the way is EXACTLY what it is intended to do: you cry, and spend money on his books, he gets the money, and you get to be "deep". Where is the great adventure, the smiles, the humor, the magic, the romance? All the elements for a good book are missing. But for a book to be a bestseller, it has to follow the same recipe that it has had since the Secret Life of Bees was first published- first, kill all parents, then send the main characteroff to remote place, then, include lots of sex, language, drugs, and alcohol, and finally, kill a main character and leave the others in a life of depression. What could possibly inspire people to read trash like this repetitively? Simple- being deep. Mr. Green and his deep books are a living example of the emperor's new clothes- how people read trash just to be deep.Go, sensible people, stand up while you still can, stand up for those nice books that don't violently kill the main characters off, the ones like Lord of the Rings, Percy Jackson, or Little Women, Castaways of the Flying Dutchmen, Star Wars, the ones that are plain old GOOD BOOKS.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 16 years old Written byilovemanga January 30, 2014

Great meaning....but

So i'm 14 read it about a week or two ago and let's be honest i think the thing that is bad is the fact that the sex is really full on. I mean they LITERALLY describe a blowjob! And porn , i think it really distracted from the great meaning that we never really know one another as much as we think
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 14 years old Written byKatReads December 7, 2013

I would change a few things.

Honestly, it was a good enough book. I think that the unnecessary sex scene is the only thing i would change. There were times when it was almost too much with the drugs, sex, and language...but besides that it was a well written book.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Kid, 10 years old December 5, 2013

Great Book!!! Definitely Recommended!

While there is a teensy bit of not THAT graphic sex but quite a few instances of language just as it says. This is an awesome book and I would definitely recommend this book but do be wary about the language.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Teen, 15 years old Written bymaddie123dftba June 28, 2013

Must read you will cry of happiness and sadness and just for the fact you dont want it to end

I read this book and fell in love with the story and the author. It does have sex related parts and cussing but a 13 yr old can handle it. But don't limit this book to your child because of this. It moved me so much. I fell in love with the characters and it was if we were friends and I could relate to them and I cried tears of joy and sadness. You just have to read this book it is my favorite and it was one of my first books I read bc before this I hated reading but now im up to a book a week. Please read 14+ and even adults to. it also has the best lesson and you learn a lot. The last 10 pages are the best. I have a signed copy and my favorite quotes on my wall. oh yes and super funny you will laugh a lot too.
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 15 years old Written bylovelife15 May 24, 2013

Not What I Thought

I'm 15, and honestly, the language and sexual content is too much for me. The sexual content is highly descriptive, which I found disturbing at parts. There's at least one f-bomb on every page or 2, and many other words. It's a captivating book, but it would be a lot better without all of the sex, language, and smoking/drinking that takes place.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 15 years old Written byKristanio January 30, 2013

This book is one of, if not, the best.

Amazing book. Got so much out of it and is one book that I could read over and over again and could never get bored with it.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 13 years old Written bynoveleater November 6, 2010

Beautiful...

Everything from the cover to the narration to the plot to the last sentence is beautiful. I cried, I laughed, and most of all, I found a friend, who I could love, trust, and find comfort. The one thing that makes this novel perfect is the narration. Miles' voice is so boyish, so funny, and so real! Miles was like me (except the smoking and memorizing last words) and like any other boy who has ever felt lonely, misunderstood, or just want to read a book that will change their life, every boy older than fourteen. The only scene(s) that made me uncomfortable is the oral sex scene, and the many kisses! Some characters smoke a lot, and other smoke drugs in a little hut where students only know about. Most everybody had drank beer under- aged in this novel, and drunk driving has to do with the big plot. This novel will make you cry for miles (pun not intentional) on end. This novel helps teenager find out that they aren't the only ones out there who have felt pain, or depression. I feel that this novel really should really bring up some interesting discussions. Many cuss words are used often, some times shot at adults. A prank almost gets a character dead. Read and cry and enjoy!
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Great messages
Teen, 13 years old Written byEmmanewman July 24, 2015

Looking for alaska

This book was an absolutely fantastic read and I will definitely recommend it to my friends. As a John Green fan having read some of his other books such as; Paper towns, The fault in our stars, An abundance of Katherine's and Will Grayson,Will Grayson this was definitely up there in the top two. I think some people would say that it is inappropriate for younger teens due to sexual and drug references and language but I thought that without use of this, the book itself would of been quite boring. Overall I thought the book had a really intriguing plot with well thought out characters and amazing educational values and would recommend it to an audience of mature readers 12+.
What other families should know
Educational value
Kid, 12 years old May 24, 2015

Good book but very inappropriate

I came into reading this book because I thought it was Paper Towns, beforehand, I had read small portions of what Paper Towns was about. When I got Looking For Alaska, I didn't know what I got myself into because it was a very interesting, well-written piece of literature, but very inappropriate. This book is a good read if your child has a high maturity level. This book promotes smoking, underage drinking, sex, and more, but it also promotes having good friends. Still, the storyline is fun and cute. It has a young difficulty level, yet it takes high maturity, and I do recommend it.
What other families should know
Educational value
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Kid, 12 years old July 21, 2014

Looking For Alaka

The book is outstanding. John Green is one of my favourite authors, as he can really create a work of art. There is reference to marijuana, but the novel never goes into detail on any of the charaters smoking it. It is noted that one of the basketball players is a "stoner" Major use of cigarettes. The characters, who are all minors (-18), sneak smoking, and cigarette use is a major part of the story. There is an oral sex scene, where Miles/Pudge has his girlfriend give him a "blow job", and another where Alaska and Miles watch porn. There are many references to sextoys and pon, comdoms and sex. Sexuality is also a major part of the story, and definitely something to look out for. Towards the end of the book, there is talk of depression and suicide. Alaska drops hints during the novel that she is depressed, but the character think nothing of it. Overall, I recommend parental discretion for children under the age of 16. It is heartwarming, and I'm sure you'll love it. happy reading :)
What other families should know
Educational value
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 14 years old Written byMetalman173 November 27, 2013

Very well written, mature book

great story and charictors. but content includes sex (kissing, touching, one scene with oral sex that is mostly comedic), charicors discuss drugs and use alcohol and smoke ciggarettes), and language (including f*ck) It depends on how mature your kid is
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 13 years old Written byradon canyon November 3, 2013

Eh, it's okay

I read The Fault In Our Stars and then turned to this for more John Green. I was kind of disappointed though. It started out with promise but quickly turned into a really long, boring experience. It looks short but it dragged on. There weren't any positive messages or great role models either. If you want good John Green, read Paper Towns, An Abundance Of Katherines or The Fault In Our Stars.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 15 years old Written bybscgirl October 10, 2013

Looking for Alaska

The book has a lot of mature subjects so id make sure the age of the person who's reading this is ok but other then that its a beautiful emotional book that has a lesson and will make you shed a couple tears.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byJohn.green19 July 15, 2012

Fantastic for mature audiences

This book is FANTASTIC If you are open minded to mature content and can see metaphorical resonance there within.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 14 years old Written byBookEater98 April 5, 2012

DFTBA

I loved this book. I laughed, I cried, and i sighed reading it. John Green is a fantastic author and taught me to live my life to the fullest with his writing. I think there are positive role models once you take away the drinking, smoking, and sex. This Looking for Alaska is truly amazing. DFTBA.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Pages