An Abundance of John Green

An Abundance of John Green
It’s 10th January 2014 today, which means it’s Alaska Young Day and two years since The Fault in Our Stars was first published. And to celebrate, I thought I’d explain why I have an abundance of John Green…


I love pretty books! I’m sure you all know that by now. I adore beautiful book covers, old books, new books, hardbacks and paperbacks, but sometimes it gets a little out of control – and my collection of John Green books is the best example of that! But I never set out to buy multiple copies of the same book. It all started when Paper Towns appeared in the Kindle Summer Sale on 18th April 2011…

An Abundance of John Green
I knew about John Green and Hank Green, VlogBrothers and Nerdfighters – how could I not, being part of the Tumblr blogosphere? – but I hadn’t read any of John Green’s books, so I snapped up Paper Towns for only £1.08 on Kindle. I was worried about picking it up: What if I didn’t enjoy it?! Would I be the only one? What would the Nerdfighters say? But luckily, I adored it. I love the road trip, the mystery, the concept of ‘paper towns’ and the vivid characters, and so two days after finishing Paper Towns, I decided to buy the rest of his books…

An Abundance of John Green
On 8th July 2011, now extremely curious about what else John Green had written, I bought all of the paperbacks available from The Book Depository. I figured that, since I was buying all the others, I might as well include Paper Towns to complete my collection! But I wasn’t able to get the edition of Looking for Alaska that I really wanted…

An Abundance of John Green
…until I saw it on Foyles.co.uk. I’d seen this beautiful edition on Tumblr, but as it was out of print, I couldn’t find it anywhere. I even asked the publisher, who didn’t have any stock left. I had finished Looking for Alaska on 17th December 2011: ‘Looking for Alaska lives up to its hype: the wonderful, moving début novel by a cherished young adult author. It’s a novel that will stay with you for a long time, while you’re looking for your own “Great Perhaps”. And the next day, I was browsing Foyles when I saw it. I had found it! I knew I didn’t need two editions, but I had to snap it up! I think this is the prettiest cover and my favourite so far.

An Abundance of John Green
Also that winter, I read Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances (but you may have noticed I forgot to include it in this post…) and a few months after that, An Abundance of Katherines. Even though An Abundance of Katherines didn’t resonate with me as much as his other books, I thought it still deserved immense praise and recognition: “If you’ve not yet read John Green, seriously, what are you waiting for, you sitzpinkler?”. At that point, it was five down, one to go.

An Abundance of John Green
And then, in June 2011, The Fault in Our Stars was announced. It was the first time I’d the opportunity to become wrapped up in the excitement about a new John Green novel. I remember Tumblr and Twitter going crazy and that everyone was talking about the cover. We were all surprised that this unusually simple cover was to represent one of the most loved authors in young adult literature, and it took quite a while to grow on me, but in hindsight, what a brilliant idea it was! It was designed so that fans could take it and make it their own and that’s certainly what happened.

Because, I’m afraid to say, I rarely visited bookshops back then, I pre-order my copy from Amazon. And then they lost it. As you can imagine, I was pretty upset. I had ordered one of the most anticipated books of the year seven months in advance and then it doesn’t even turn up… I eventually gave up and went to Foyles after it was clear that it wasn’t going to turn up! I’d only just started my first job in publishing and I remember explaining who John Green was to my colleagues – none of them had heard of him!

An Abundance of John Green
I opened every single copy in Foyles, looking for a Yeti, but to no avail. I did, however, come across a Nerdfighter Note. It’s rather fun, coming across a message that someone has left in a book, but I accidentally (stupidly?) left it in the shop (I wonder where it is now?). Luckily, the person had written their Twitter username on the note, which I remembered, and so I tweeted them. I picked a blue J Scribble as it’s my favourite colour (can you tell?).

I started reading The Fault in Our Stars as soon as I got home and didn’t stop until I’d finished: “The Fault in Our Star‘s brilliance is mainly due to its characters. I adored Hazel. She’s a fantastic voice and very witty. I also loved Hazel’s unrelenting passion for books. Augustus Waters is also a fantastic character, and a perfect match for Hazel.”

An Abundance of John Green
And then flash forward (nearly) a year to 20th December 2012 and John Green announces that he’ll be going on a UK signing tour! On 3rd February 2013, I got the chance to go on The Fault in Our Stars tour and I ended up with yet another duplicate as a copy of the paperback edition was included with our ticket. It’s probably the most amazing and the most surreal book event I’ve ever been to. If you go to many book events or work in bookselling or publishing, you’ll know that it wasn’t exactly a typical event.

TFIOSLIVE

An Abundance of John Green
I got my paperback copy signed by John Green and Hank Green… I never know what to say to authors, but I said to John something like I was happy he used Tumblr as I ran a book blog on Tumblr and he said ‘Thank you! I love Tumblr!’. I hadn’t planned on what to say next… #Awkward.

An Abundance of John Green
And then it’s 30th March 2013, my birthday, and I received John Green’s limited edition box set. I know it’s a marketing tool, but if you put sometime in a box set, I’ll probably buy it. I also loved that each copy was signed, that it contained the new edition of An Abundance of Katherines, designed by a fan, and the original cover for Looking for Alaska. I think if you’re going to have stuff lying around your house, it might as well be books, so I love having box sets on my desk or bedside table.

I finally read my last John Green novel, Will Grayson, Will Grayson, at the end of 2013. I thought it was hilarious, touching and occasionally incredibly difficult to read. I was originally going to wait until his next book was published to read it, but decided that 2013 was the year that I needed to have read all of John Green’s novels! And I’m now ready for the next. I’ll be early awaiting my Sneak Peek from Project for Awesome

An Abundance of John GreenAn Abundance of John Green

Happy Alaska Young Day!

Looking for AlaskaPaper TownsAn Abundance of KatherinesLet It Snow  Will Grayson, Will GraysonThe Fault in Our Stars

What’s your favourite John Green novel? What’s your favourite cover? Do you own any multiple copies of the same book?

26 thoughts on “An Abundance of John Green

  1. John Green is an obsession. Once you start, you can’t stop. Whether that’s books or videos, the Greens just…infiltrate. It’s wonderful.

    I collect Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, Harry Potter, and Laini Taylor’s DoSaB trilogy, all for pretty covers, limited editions, special anniversaries, new introductions, you name it. It’s fun, collecting books. It shows your passions in the most beautiful way possible.

    • Ahhhh! You met John and Hank?!? Don’t worry, I would have no idea what to say to them, I would probably just ramble and hope that I’m speaking English.
      My favorite Green book is probably Paper Towns, though that’s pretty much tied with Fault. It’s so hard to choose!
      -Kaitlyn :)

    • I do love your Jane Eyre collection! I’ll also be getting the Harry Potter illustrated editions, when they’re published. And I’m tempted to get the UK DoSaB paperbacks because they’re just as beautiful as the hardbacks.

  2. I love that boxset condition, so classy! I have yet to read one John Green book (I know, shock, horror) but I do finally own my own copy of The Fault in Our Stars, so I’m hoping to get round to that soon. :)

  3. Gosh definite fan status! I love your TFIOS/LFA sandwich. Ive never got to the point where Ive bought multiple copies of the same book (on purpose that is). Ive been deliberating over the boxset for a while, and I think I might have to splurge soon! Ive only read TFIOS and Let It Snow so far, but hoping to catch up this year. Perhaps 2014 will be MY John Green year!

  4. That boxset has the prettiest box, and I think the daisy-cover edition of Looking for Alaska is the nicest….*mumbles* wouldyoubelieveI’veneverreadanyJohnGreen. The only books I have multiple copies of are all by Angela Carter. I love them so. I even wrote a post years ago for, funnily enough, the livejournal community prettybooks, with photos of all the editions I own and want.

  5. Lucy @ Queen of Contemporary

    We both have three copies of The Fault in Our Stars! Paper Towns has a new cover and I’ve been eyeing it for a few weeks now. I think I’ll cave soon and buy it because I really like it. I’m not a huge fan of the first but I love Paper Towns anyway. I’m also hoping to buy a hardback of The Fault in Our Stars… Do I need four copies?!
    I also really love all the US hardbacks… ARGH! Why do you do this to me, Stacey?! You’ve got me wanting to buy them all again now!

  6. […] If you’re a John Green fan, or even if you’re not, I would definitely suggest checking this post […]

  7. Great post! I loved Paper Towns and Will Grayson, Will Grayson the best. (Can’t choose one!) I often get signed versions of books that I loved, so I end up having one that I can lend to other people and then the other is just for my own collection!

  8. I just finished The Fault in Our Stars last night and it was magnificent. Its the only one I’ve read but I won looking for Alaska and can’t wait to read it too. What a great find…a boxed and signed set?!?

  9. That’s an awesome collection! I’m like that with Patrick Ness books. I own his Chaos Walking series twice and I even have a third copy of Monsters of Men. (and I was bold enough to bring them all to a signing XD) And know I’m adoring the new cover of The Crane wife and I’m probably going to buy a second copy of that one too.

  10. I gave my original set of my John Green books to my sister when I got the boxset as she’s also a fan. I also own a paperback copy of TFiOS from the tour. I can’t wait to go to the next one, it was so much fun!
    I recently got Will Grayson, Will Grayson for my birthday and I’m almost finished with Let it Snow so after those two I’ll be all caught up!

  11. I’ve only read FIOS but after reading this post im off to buy some more John Green. Think paper towns maybe. Thanks x

  12. I’m so glad you’re just as obsessed with John Green as I am! I absolutely love the Fault in our Stars to pieces, but I’d say Paper Towns was his best work, at least as far as novelty of the plot was concerned!

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