I picked up The Fault in our Stars not realizing that author John Green was the same John Green of the excellent CrashCourse, and brother of Hank Green of SciShow (our very first Recommends). I’m out of touch, I guess.
Once I cracked it open, I couldn’t put it down. Looking for Alaska - same thing. I haven’t read his other books, but the characters in his novels are real and vivid - they’re human and act like it, and that’s wonderful. His writing, like his videos on CrashCourse, feels comfortable and familiar, and does not condescend.
Whenever I see books billed by age group (such as these: “young adult”), I’m always reminded of the C.S. Lewis quote: “A book that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s book.” I think that’s much more universally true, especially in our industry. John Green’s body of work does a wonderful job ignoring these false distinctions.