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Paper Towns Summary & Study Guide

At a Glance

❶Dun dun dun… Quentin believes that Margo Roth Spiegelman has run away from home, and is leaving him clues to her whereabouts.

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Paper Towns
Paper Towns Summary & Study Guide Description
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Quentin is an intelligent boy and Margo has a reputation for being tough and cool. When they were nine years old, he and Margo shared a discovery that changed their lives forever. While walking through a park, they found a man named Robert Joyner who had killed himself.

Since that night, he and Margo went separate ways. She asks him to accompany her on an all-nighter of pranks. Margo is on a litany of revenge that includes spray paint, blackmail, and breaking into Sea World. Quentin thinks that this night will bring he and Margo together again as friends.

However, Margo runs away after their adventures. Along the way, Quentin realizes that Margo is not really the person that he thought he knew. Critics admire Green's memorable and unusual characters in this slice of Florida life. At a Glance Quentin Jacobsen and Margo Spiegelman, who as young children are friends, one night find the body of a man named Robert Joyner, who committed suicide in the park.

Quentin and Margo gradually drift apart as they grow older. Her bloody shoes forebode the way this experience will follow her into adulthood. That night, after Quentin has gone to bed following a comforting conversation with his therapist mother , Margo appears at his bedroom window. Through the screen, she tells him she has done an investigation about the dead man, whose name was Robert Joyner. Alvarez told Margo that Joyner shot himself because he was getting divorced.

Quentin allows his mother to comfort him, which is evidence of their trusting relationship and of his desire to be comforted. Margo does not share her experience with her parents, highlighting her isolation from them. She shows a powerful need to understand what happened to Joyner and seems to feel kinship with him, believing she can understand his decision.

Quentin , at a loss for words, removes the window screen. He seems to assume Margo will come into his bedroom, but Margo does not move and tells him to shut the window. He does, and she remains outside, staring at him. He waves and smiles at her, but notices that her gaze is fixed on something behind him, and that she looks afraid. They stand in silence, looking at each other. Quentin claims that he does not remember how the encounter ended, and says that in his memory, they continue to look at each other through the window forever.

By removing the screen, he invites Margo into his home and life; by insisting he close the window, Margo creates a barrier between them. They are stuck staring at each other, both unable to move closer through the barrier and unwilling to separate. They are both connected and utterly apart. Quentin concludes, narrating once again from the present, that Margo always loved mysteries, and he wonders whether she loved mysteries so much that she eventually became one.

That Quentin refers to Margo as a mystery emphasizes the difficulty of comprehending her mind. Retrieved September 13, Download this Chart PDF.

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