book review, Literature

Turtles All The Way Down | John Green | Book Review

After the award-winning book, The Fault in our Stars, everyone was craving for another John Green book, it took some time, not some but around five years for the next book, Turtles All The Way Down, but is it as scintillating as the last one? Let us find out.

Story [No Spoilers]

The story revolves around a sixteen-year-old girl, Aza Holmes, living in Indianapolis. She’s a high school student living with an obsessive-compulsive disorder, she is constantly paranoid about infection and there is a point in the book where she is kissing a guy but stops midway as she thinks that his microbes would live in her body all through her life! So you get the idea of bad it is.

But her life changes when her best friend Daisy breaks the news that a billionaire, Russell Pickett, was charged with corruption fled when he was about to be arrested and if anyone gives any lead to where he is will get $100,000. And coincidently Russell Pickett’s elder son Davis was an old acquaintance of Aza. Tempted by the reward Daisy takes Aza in search of the fugitive billionaire.

Were they able to find Russell Pickett? Did they get the reward? Did Russell Pickett get arrested? What happened to his sons Davis and Noah? What happened between Aza and Davis? These are some questions that are answered by the end of the book.


Green has written Turtles All The Way Down in first person narrative, the story is narrated by the protagonist, Aza Holmes. The story is all throughout gripping and there is at no point that you’d like to keep the book down. There are some references to Star Wars as Aza’s best friend Daisy writes Star Wars fan fiction and if you are a fan of Star Wars you enjoy that as well.


There are four main characters in the book:

Aza Holmes is an interesting character. She is always vulnerable. She talks to herself a lot whenever she feels that the danger of human-microbe infecting her, which is justified.

Daisy Ramirez writes Star Wars fan fiction and is always in fun mode. There are some good puns that come over from her making her even more loveable.

Davis Pickett, the son of the fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, is very much into astronomy and has good knowledge of stars, planets, space, etc. The scenes where he is with Aza are some of the highlights from the book. Moreover, his blogs are something I fell in love with.

Mychal Turner is an aspiring artist and a good friend of both Aza and Daisy. The reactions that he has when he goes into the Pickett mansion are something you certainly don’t want to miss.


When the release date of the book was announced it was also said that it would be a detective story, but as it turns out, it wasn’t actually like that. The detective aspect of the book somehow gets lost amidst the love story that starts popping up when Davis and Aza meet. I was expecting it to be a little different from Green’s previous works but there is a love angle in the book which can be a disappointment for some, but a treat to others, so it is highly subjective in nature.


You think you’re the painter, but you’re the canvas.

Your life is a story told about you, not the one you tell.

No one says good-byes unless they want to see you again.

One of the challenges with pain- physical or psychic -is that we really only approach it through a metaphor.

We’re such language-based creatures that to some extent we cannot know what we cannot name. And we assume it isn’t real.

Sometimes makeup feels kind of like an armour.

And I think maybe deep down I am just an instrument that exists to turn oxygen into carbon dioxide.

What I love about science is that as you learn, you don’t really get answers. You just get better questions.

Overall Review and Rating

I believe that it is a must-read book, even if you’re not a fan of John Green or this genre in particular because there are points in the book where Green gives really good life advice.

I’m going with 4 out of 5 for Turtles All The Way Down.

Click here to check out the review of John Green’s An Abundance of Katherines.



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