An Absolutely Remarkable Thing

An Absolutely Remarkable Thing

The Carls just appeared. Coming home from work at three a.m., twenty-three-year-old April May stumbles across a giant sculpture. Delighted by its appearance and craftsmanship--like a ten-foot-tall Transformer wearing a suit of samurai armor--April and her friend Andy make a video with it, which Andy uploads to YouTube. The next day April wakes up to a viral video and a new...

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Title:An Absolutely Remarkable Thing
Author:Hank Green
Rating:
Edition Language:English

An Absolutely Remarkable Thing Reviews

  • Christine Riccio

    I just finished An Absolutely Remarkable Thing and it was great!! I had so much fun flying through this book. My booktalk will be coming later this week, I'm excited to discuss with yall!

  • Haley

    So I am giving this four stars for now, even though it is possible it is a 3/3.5-star book. I really loved everything it had to say and the way in which it said it, and I thought it was a highly original and well-written story, but I was confused and unimpressed by the ending. (That being said, given the premise of the book, I would like to point out the irony of this being easily my most-liked review ever.)

    What I did love about this story was its

    So I am giving this four stars for now, even though it is possible it is a 3/3.5-star book. I really loved everything it had to say and the way in which it said it, and I thought it was a highly original and well-written story, but I was confused and unimpressed by the ending. (That being said, given the premise of the book, I would like to point out the irony of this being easily my most-liked review ever.)

    What I did love about this story was its focus on fame and the way sudden celebrity—especially internet celebrity—affects a person. April May becomes more brand and spokeswoman than human for much of this book, and because she's the narrator, looking back on past events with new clarity and self-realization, her downward spiral is very clear and honestly understandable. I could totally understand why she made the decisions she did, why so many people hanging onto her every word would be heady, how she couldn't find it in her to stop. And I liked that, looking back, she knew that it should have been obvious she was being destructive and foolish, but how, in the moment, her choices fit her state of mind.

    I wish we had seen more of Maya, and more of Maya, Andy, and April all together as friends, but I liked the clearly defined characteristics of each person in the story. I thought these were strong characters, with original views, personalities, and voices, and I liked the way they worked together through the problems of the Carls.

    And while the message of the book was a blatant one, at times, it's perfect for the time. Not only that fame changes you, not necessarily for the better; not only how even good people can mistake fame as an opportunity to speak for your entire system of beliefs, and, along the way, lose your personhood; but how we're stronger together than apart. This book was very focused on bringing people together across the globe; April realizes time and time again that working through a problem alone never solves it. It's through endless, global collaboration that we make strides—or even a small collaboration between friends who have different ways of thinking.

    But the

    WHAT.

    I could have lived without a full conclusion for the Carls. I needed a conclusion for April.

    Overall, I love the way this book is laid out. I love how modern it is, and how it's more focused on the big picture and hindsight than characters (even though I am traditionally a huge fan of character-driven stories). I love the originality. I couldn't put it down. I just wanted a few more chapters.

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  • Tammy

    April May is the snarky, relationship wrecking narrator who is unwittingly catapulted into the dizzying heights of international fame upon being the first to discover a randomly named “Carl”. Initially thought to be an art installation, the Carls prove to be considerably more than visually striking. April becomes addicted to being first and staying first within the media both social and otherwise. At first glance this seems like a Young Adult novel and it will excite this audience but there is a

    April May is the snarky, relationship wrecking narrator who is unwittingly catapulted into the dizzying heights of international fame upon being the first to discover a randomly named “Carl”. Initially thought to be an art installation, the Carls prove to be considerably more than visually striking. April becomes addicted to being first and staying first within the media both social and otherwise. At first glance this seems like a Young Adult novel and it will excite this audience but there is a lot more going on than the plot might lead you to believe which makes it appealing to more mature readers. In addition to fame (its effects and aftermath), we take a look at gender (identification and fluidity), crowd behavior (physical as well as cyber), and the unification of humanity in order to solve a puzzle. This is a fantastical journey that leads one to an unexpected destination.

  • Melissa Rochelle

    I hate that people are calling this "young adult". It's not. Stop it with the inane labels that turn people off instead of bringing them in.

    The main character isn't even in high school OR college for that matter!

    This is a book for people that like to read quirky, pop-culture-filled, sci-fi-ish books -- those people might be 15 years old (and their parents don't mind them reading the occasional profanity). Maybe it's a late 20s human that also enjoys reading the novels of

    ,

    I hate that people are calling this "young adult". It's not. Stop it with the inane labels that turn people off instead of bringing them in.

    The main character isn't even in high school OR college for that matter!

    This is a book for people that like to read quirky, pop-culture-filled, sci-fi-ish books -- those people might be 15 years old (and their parents don't mind them reading the occasional profanity). Maybe it's a late 20s human that also enjoys reading the novels of

    ,

    ,

    , and/or

    . OR maybe they're a thirty-something mom that likes to read fast-moving books about random robot-alien encounters. Or maybe they're a forty-something that picked this one up because they also liked John Green and they thought this was his new book but realized after the fact that it said Hank -- and they won't be disappointed.

    I'm certain I have more to say, but I needed to get that out there.

  • Em (RunawayWithDreamthieves)

    Not to start a family feud but I picked up this book solely because I’ve grown tired with John Green romanticising the white heterosexual nerd’s quest for the perfect woman whom they win by using the longest most pretentious words possible, and I was very curious to read his brother’s work.

    And what do you know....I actually liked it.

    Hank Green created a story with great deep undercurrents. Under the surface is a very forward and honest discussion about social media and the uncomfortable commodi

    Not to start a family feud but I picked up this book solely because I’ve grown tired with John Green romanticising the white heterosexual nerd’s quest for the perfect woman whom they win by using the longest most pretentious words possible, and I was very curious to read his brother’s work.

    And what do you know....I actually liked it.

    Hank Green created a story with great deep undercurrents. Under the surface is a very forward and honest discussion about social media and the uncomfortable commodification of the self it perpetuates. It’s a reminder that a person’s online presence is only a fraction of their personhood, and how we all—knowingly or unknowingly—peddle out every profitable aspects of our personalities on the internet for the very attention we would hate to receive in real life. It was a very poignant reality check.

    The main character—a bisexual 23-year-old woman—is what you would call "very unlikeable" but in the way an unlikeable character who doesn’t soften up or sugarcoats the less than pleasant aspects of their personalities and with whom you can, to your great horror, assimilate would be.

    Oh, and aliens!

    Overall, suspend your disbelief for a while, and you might enjoy this book.

    3,5 stars

  • Maxwell

    Meh. It had a really cool plot but I hated the writing style. And that ending made it even worse for me. I did not realize this would be part of a series when I picked it up so I was expecting a satisfying ending, and it did not deliver for me. Bummer.

  • Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen)

    I knew it!

    I still listen to Hank and John Green's podcast, and a few episodes ago Hank teased an announcement. Totally nailed it with my guess it was going to be a book!

    Love both the brothers and the impact they've had on Internet culture. Hank is especially well-spoken and enthusiastic about so many important things, can't wait to see how this translates into a novel.

    *casually sells soul for an ARC*

    *(...or at least a release date? C'mon!)

  • Taylor Ramirez

    Nope. Ya lost me.

  • Nick

    Okay where is my crash course squad?

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