Book review – Turtles All the Way Down (Spoiler Free)

“No, it’s not, Holmesy. You pick your endings, and your beginnings. You get to pick the frame, you know? Maybe you don’t choose what’s in the picture, but you decide the frame.”


  • Title: Turtles All the Way Down
  • Author: John Green
  • Genre: YA fiction
  • Pages: 304
  • Publication date: October 10, 2017
  • Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers

I have to start by saying that I love John Green as a person, but I never have been a huge fan of his books. I read The Fault in Our Stars years after its high fame and I found it too predictable. I knew the ending before the second chapter thanks to the fact Cancer and I are longtime enemies. But, knowing the main character of John’s new book, Turtles All the Way Down, had an anxiety disorder, I had to get the book. I’m glad I did.

Having a character with a mental disorder as the primary character (Aza) is a huge risk because of the stigma. But this book doesn’t make Aza’s disorder have a huge negative aroma; it makes Aza’s life humane and honest. For people who don’t understand anxiety well, this would be a good place to start.

Aza gets pushed into searching for a missing billionaire. She is heading into college soon, so the hundred-thousand dollar reward sounds amazing. But, of course, life gets in the way once or twice.

Overall, the story is well written. I commend John for his well-thought-out phrases from Vlogbrothers, so I could be biased. But the plot died down a couple of times throughout the novel. It dies before something happens, which makes some chapters pop out more than others.

A point other readers may mind is the philosophical aspect through the whole book. It mentions different questions and proposed answers about humanness and life in general. These moments can seem to make the story ‘pause’ for a moment as John reflects on some inner thoughts. All writers do this at some point, but John does it all the time in small sections. If philosophical thoughts are not your thing, this book may not be one for you.

I read this book faster than what I planned by a couple of days. It’s a great quick read to get into. I loved reading a book with an accurate representation of an anxiety disorder as well. I actually already have recommended this book to my friends, so I recommend it to you as well.

Score: 9.2/10
Average rating on Goodreads: 4.19/5

2 thoughts on “Book review – Turtles All the Way Down (Spoiler Free)

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