Book Discussion – Turtles All the Way Down

Author: John Green

Genre: Young Adult, Fiction

Pages: 286

Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers


Sixteen-year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.

Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts. (Synopsis from Goodreads.)

monthly YA book club

My Thoughts

Okay, so I was trying really hard not to have crazy high expectations with this book because I loved Looking for Alaska, The Fault in Our Stars, and Paper Towns so much I figured there was no way John Green would yet again take my breath away with his words.



He did it.

(…) we were looking at the same sky together, which is maybe more intimate than eye contact anyway. Anybody can look at you. It’s quite rare to find someone who sees the same world you see.


The friendship between Aza and Daisy is so strong and beautiful–I loved it. Daisy was probably my favorite character. She made me laugh so many times, and it’s hard not to love a character that makes you laugh so much. (Also, this is something I love so much about John Green’s books–he makes me laugh and he makes me cry and he makes me see things differently and isn’t it exactly what reading is about?

The descent into Aza’s mind was SO fascinating and brilliantly written. I honestly couldn’t put the book down. (The only time I put it down was because my sister was giving birth– really, I became an aunt at chapter 12!) 😀

It’s really one of those books that swallows you whole and you won’t be able to go to bed until you know for sure that Aza is going to be okay because you can’t possibly sleep well otherwise.


Admittedly, I have some anxiety problems, but I would argue it isn’t irrational to be concerned about the fact that you are a skin-encased bacterial colony.


I kind of wanted a fairy-tale happy ending for Aza and Davis, but this book was too honest to do that, and that’s probably what I liked so much about it.

And then there was that last sentence that was so beautiful and I cried a little–John has a way to break my heart and then fix it right away like that–and suddenly it was the perfect ending and I just wanted to read the whole thing again.


Seriously, as I read I kept sticking post-its every 2-3 pages for quotes I wanted to go back to. There are so many I really think I’m going to have to write a Top 10 of my favorite quotes from this novel.

I’m just so glad this book exists.

I’ve never read a book that portrayred anxiety that well. Anyway.

What did you think of the ending?

Do you have a favorite character?

Have you read other books from John Green? Which one is your favorite so far? (I’ve been trying to answer this question myself since I read TATWD and it’s honestly hurting my brain to think about it too much.)

Let me know in the comments!

8 thoughts on “Book Discussion – Turtles All the Way Down

Add yours

  1. This book was so good! I absolutely LOVED the “looking at the same sky” quote. I did like Daisy initially but then got mad at her when she accused Aza of being selfish (I mean, she has acute OCD. You cannot possibly call her selfish). I loved what you said about the ending! It was phrased perfectly- this book is too honest to give us the fairy tale ending. Honestly, I think it was one of the best written endings I’ve read.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know, this ending man. It literally shook me it was so good. I kinda want to be back home right now so I can read the whole thing again.
      And I totally agree about Daisy. Like, I understand where this is coming from, and Aza is kind of being a shitty friend to her, but I was like UM WHAT when she actually used the word selfish haha. Omg, I can’t wait for another John Green book! ❤


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