TURTLES ALL THE WAY DOWN discussion (spoilers edition)

ohalltheplacesohalltheplaces recyclable trash texasPosts: 449 ✭✭✭
This is the place to rant, cry, have deep conversations, everything pertaining to John's long awaited novel! Feel free to talk
“You're both the fire and the water that extinguishes it. You're the narrator, the protagonist, and the sidekick. You're the storyteller and the story told. You are somebody's something, but you are also your you.”
― John Green, Turtles All the Way Down


  • Gara_the_engineerGara_the_engineer In a log house at the edge of the forestPosts: 621 ✭✭✭
    I can't really say much more about it other than that I really liked the book but also disliked it in a way, because John wrote it based on his own experiences and it's sad to know how bad it can be for him when things are bad.
    The meaning of life is to give life a meaning
  • hermionegrangerhermionegranger Atlanta, Georgia, USAPosts: 59
    Hey guys! So I finished the book about a week after I had gotten it. To be honest though, I didn't read it for a couple of days (a) because I was busy with schoolwork and extracurricular activities and (b) because I was saving it. While Aza was in the midst of an anxiety episode (I guess that's what it's called), I took a break to go to school, and I literally felt super anxious and worried. Not about anything in particular, just stressed out. And then I finished the book, AND IT HAD THE GREATEST ENDING EVER, and I was suddenly less stressed out, although it took me another week to return to my current state of happiness/mental health, I guess.
    Okay, I realize that was probably just a super long runon and I should probably clarify, but oh well, today's just not the day
    Happiness can be found even in the darkest times if one only remembers to turn on the light. -Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore
  • tuttitutti Posts: 47
    I loved Tatwd so much, it is now my favourite of John's books. One of the things I liked about it was that I feel like John revealed himself a lot more. At times when I was reading it was almost as if it was him speaking, not Aza.
    I think the part I loved most about this book was that it was so accurate. As a person who suffers from OCD it is so hard to know if my thoughts are mine or that of the disorder, and if you can't define your thoughts how can you define yourself? It put so many of my thoughts into words and that is why I feel so close to it.
    Also, I love that through this book more people can be educated about what it is like to have a mental illness like Aza's. When people think about OCD they usually think it means that a person is just pedantic about tidiness, and they don't realise that it is actually a proper anxiety disorder. This belief that it is no big deal makes it harder for people to reach out for help, because they think that their problems won't be taken seriously. Hopefully with books like these people can have a better understanding and it will get rid of some of the stigma.
    "the purpose of life is to discover your gift, and the meaning of life is to give your gift away."
  • ohalltheplacesohalltheplaces recyclable trash texasPosts: 449 ✭✭✭
    “I know how that felt-all my life, I’d be unable to think straight, unable to even finish having a thought because my thought came not in lines but in knotted loops curling upon themselves in sinking quicksand in light- swallowing worm-holes” -Turtles All The Way Down

    Okay so first I want to start this out saying I have mental health illness. So in a way, that’s why I love it so much. I have ADD, and I know that that seems so regular now-a-days, but living in it is really hard. It is hard to think because instead of, like Aza, I think almost all of the thoughts all together in and out and on top of each other. I think that this gave a great narrative of living with mental illness; I really feel so close to her.
    It was so pure and honest and the ending was beautiful. It didn’t lie; it was life, empty and beautiful.
    “You're both the fire and the water that extinguishes it. You're the narrator, the protagonist, and the sidekick. You're the storyteller and the story told. You are somebody's something, but you are also your you.”
    ― John Green, Turtles All the Way Down
  • YodaboyazYodaboyaz Chandler, ArizonaPosts: 227 ✭✭
    I cannot personally identify with Aza's struggles, but there were definitely some quotes that resonated with me.
    "I was so good at being a kid and so terrible at being whatever I was now."
    That sentence sums up the past year of my life so well.
    "I don't know." What a liberating phrase.
  • maybedeadcatsmaybedeadcats Posts: 21
    @tutti I agree that this book left a lot of people much more aware about OCD, which I think is a great thing (the awareness, not OCD) because society often puts so much stigma around mental illness and it's nice to have a touch stone like Turtles to refer back to to make the topic less of a taboo.
    I really liked Turtles, even though I don't think it's my favorite John Green book. (I love so many of them, it's hard to choose.) I'm mostly just happy it didn't have the trope of 'falling in love when you have a mental illness will solve everything' because that is so frustrating to see in literature. (I feel like it's kinda obvious that this wouldn't happen because John Green wrote it and he's lived with OCD, and he's always very cautious of using tropes, but it was still a relief.)
  • PonyKidPonyKid Posts: 2
    I love TATWD, I feel really close to the main character,Aza, as I too have OCD. It makes living difficult. When I don't take my medicine it gets worse. I am constantly worried that I am going to do something wrong and it is going to be the end. Like if I don't chew my food enough I am going to choke and die. Or I worry I didn't lock the doors and I HAVE to go check, even if I already did like 6 other times that night. The book shows the reality of living with mental illness. Mental Illness doesn't usually come with superpowers, it just usually sucks. I also relate to Aza because she likes Applebee's, and I do too.
  • Can you hold me like you did
    In these last moments together
    Let me feel the warmth in your hands
    When we would not know about the future
    But be happy about the present

    Can you bring me again
    On the road i have not taken
    To prove to me that it is love we feel
    Not what we are in

    Can you teach me about the stars
    And still see that meteor shower behind the clouds
    And remind me that it is the same sky we share
    Wherever we are
    Between you and I

    Can you turn around once more
    And say those words of Good-bye,
    Because i would
    To tell you that even at the furthest corners
    I want to see you again

    By Me
    To: Mr John Green---Turtles all the way down
  • Loved the book man. The ending was sooooo GOOD i had to read it 10 times. Got inspired to write the poem, and I liked how all the struggles are portrayed so vividly...

    It reflected a contrast---how the rich are not necessarily happy and the relatively poor people may actually be happier(Davis and Daisy)
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