Wren Reviews: ‘An Abundance of Katherines’

Title: An Abundance of Katherines
Author: John Green
Genre: Romance, Realistic, YA fiction
Premise:
(Goodreads)
Katherine V thought boys were gross
Katherine X just wanted to be friends
Katherine XVIII dumped him in an e-mail
K-19 broke his heart
When it comes to relationships, Colin Singleton’s type happens to be girls named Katherine. And when it comes to girls named Katherine, Colin is always getting dumped. Nineteen times, to be exact.
On a road trip miles from home, this anagram-happy, washed-up child prodigy has ten thousand dollars in his pocket, a bloodthirsty feral hog on his trail, and an overweight, Judge Judy-loving best friend riding shotgun–but no Katherines. Colin is on a mission to prove The Theorem of Underlying Katherine Predictability, which he hopes will predict the future of any relationship, avenge Dumpees everywhere, and finally win him the girl. Love, friendship, and a dead Austro-Hungarian archduke add up to surprising and heart-changing conclusions in this ingeniously layered comic novel about reinventing oneself.
Plot: We start with Colin leaving his Chicago home. He is getting over being dumped by the nineteenth Katherine. He goes on a road trip, but he ends up in Gutshot when he wants to see the body of Franz Ferdinand. He ends up being a worker for Hollis the owner of the nearby textile faculty. He works with his road trip buddy and best friend Hassan for money by recording people talking about their textile factory work and past for Hollis. He starts working on a theorem to predict the future of a relationship.
He becomes friends with Lindsey Lee Wells who is Hollis’s daughter. He discovers that Lindsey is dating a Colin. He slowly meets the other people in Gutshot. The oldesters in particular.
Hassan starts dating a popular girl named Katrina. He, and Colin, are invited to hunt pigs. They are bitten by hornets and get attacked and muddied. Hassan discovers Katrina having sex with TOC, The Other Colin (Lindsey’s Colin.) Colin starts to get closer with Lindsey. Lindsey and TOC break up. They find out that Hollis is selling land. Lindsey is determined to figure out why. They find out that the textile factory is going under. Colin ends up with Lindsey after a few ‘dates’ and a few trips together. They end up together after Lindsey has an emotional break down.
Character Development:
Colin. I like geniuses. For some reason. I don’t know why. I like them because they are viewed negatively in society. Let me say this. I don’t like Colin. He dates girls left and right. He has the potential to do so much more. He’s just drowned in sorrows over Katherines. Can’t he see that they aren’t good for him? Can’t he just avoid girls named Katherine? Colin acts like a child sometimes. I truly hate that. He acts as if he hasn’t grown up.
Hassan. I love how he plays the part of a funny, ‘chubby’ guy. He overdoes it, though. He acts like he knows better. He is a good friend, though. That’s a good thing. I like how he stands up to Colin when Colin acts like a brat.
Lindsey Lee Wells. I don’t like Lindsey. I feel that she has a bit of low self esteem. She acts like a different person with different people. I like the low self esteem part of her. The part she shared with Colin alone. She seems more real. Then she talks to someone else and ends up acting differently. I don’t like this quick change. It is reality, though, which I like.
Problems: There are more problems than good points
The plot is dull and boring. I didn’t get anything out of this book. The plot had ups and downs, but I didn’t like the small plot twists. They were minor and insignificant. Where is this story going? Where will it end up? I don’t know. The story ends on a confusing note. Where are they going? Who will they pick up? It’s hard to tell with this cliffhanger.
Another problem is the characters. Colin is annoying. He is too obsessed with girls. He isn’t really focused on his studies. When he should. And Hassan? He overdoes the ‘fat boy’ image. I don’t see why he has to overplay it. That makes no sense.
Another problem is the romance. Where is the attraction between Colin and Lindsey? I don’t see it. Colin is a bit passive aggressive to things. He reacts to Lindsey saying things. The only thing that brings anything to the table is at the end in the cave. Lindsey and Colin don’t have any chemistry.
Good points: There are a few good points.
I like the comedy. I typically don’t like comedy books, but this comedy made me laugh anyways. I liked it. It was a good part.
The comedy is one of the only things going for this story. In its entirety.
Another good part is the friendship. This isn’t just a romance. It is about romance, but we get a good friendship. Hassan and Colin are admirable friends. They stay together through thick and thin.
Lindsey was annoying, but she was also real. She is more real than Colin or Hassan. She acts like a different person each time. People do that. It’s every day. And that’s what makes her real. I like realistic characters. You can relate to them better. I like that in books.
Score: 6/10
Recommended: If you like John Green books. If you like realistic fiction with romance and friendships.
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