An Abundance of Katherines Author:John Green When it comes to relationships, Colin Singleton?s type happens to be girls named Katherine. And when it comes to girls named Katherine, Colin is always getting dumped. Nineteen times, to be exact. He?s also a washedup child prodigy with ten thousand dollars in his pocket, a passion for anagrams, and an overweight, Judge Judy-obsessed best friend... more ». Colin?s on a mission to prove The Theorem of Underlying Katherine Predictability, which will predict the future of all relationships, transform him from a fading prodigy into a true genius, and finally win him the girl. Letting expectations go and allowing love in are at the heart of Colin?s hilarious quest to find his missing piece and avenge dumpees everywhere.« less
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ISBN-13: 9780142410707 ISBN-10: 0142410705 Pages:272 Reading Level: All Ages Rating:
If you had the opportunity to devise a theorem that could correctly predict the outcome of a romantic relationship, would you do it? If it worked, would you use it? Can it even be done? This is the problem plaguing Colin Singleton, recent high school graduate, nearly-former child prodigy, hopeful genius. Colin, you see, has a significant problem. He falls in love quite easily, which in and of itself isn't such a bad thing. The fact that all of his loves, nineteen of them to be exact, have been named Katherine can even be explained away by some form of twisted scientific method. What can't be explained, though, is why Colin has been dumped by all nineteen of those Katherines.
When he's dumped by the love of his life, Katherine XIX, he finds himself in a bad place. He can no longer call himself a child prodigy, since he's graduated from high school. He's not a genius, because he's never come up with anything that will change the world. There's an empty place inside of him where his latest Katherine's love used to live, and he doesn't know what to do with himself. Until Hassan Harbish (Muslim, but not a terrorist) devises a way to get Colin out of his funk--a road trip. With no destination in mind, the two set off in The Hearse, Colin's car, and go where the road leads them.
Where it leads them is a small town called Gutshot, Tennessee, where Colin gets the urge to see the supposed grave of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. It's also where the two meet Lindsey Lee Wells and her mother, Hollis. Not to mention where they get to live in a giant Pepto Bismol-pink house on a hill, interview employees of a factory that makes tampon strings, and eat Monster Thickburgers at the local Hardees.
It's also the place where Colin decides to finish the Theorem of Underlying Katherine Predictability. Assign numerical value to different variables, plot it on a graph, and you'll be able to predict how long a relationship will last--and who will be the dumper, and who will be the dumpee. Except Colin forgot some pertinent information, like chance, and distorted memories, and the fact that love is never predictable. As Colin and Hassan learn a few things about life in the small town of Gutshot, we get to follow their journey of learning to grow up, to make a name for yourself, and how to matter as a person.
I loved AN ABUNDANCE OF KATHERINES, even more than Mr. Green's previous book, LOOKING FOR ALASKA. That book won the prestigious Michael L. Printz award, and I won't be surprised if this book is nominated, as well. This story is funny, poignant, and informative. For example, if I hadn't read AN ABUNDANCE OF KATHERINES I would never have known that:
1) Fetor hepaticus is a symptom of late-stage liver failure where your breath literally smells like a rotting corpse.
2) The junior senator from New Hampshire in 1873 was Bainbridge Wadleigh.
3) There is absolutely no scientific proof that drinking eight glasses of water a day will improve your health.
4) Dingleberries can be anagrammed into see inbred girl; lie breeds grin; leering debris; greed be nil, sir; be idle re. rings; ringside rebel; and residing rebel.
5) Nikola Tesla did a lot for electricity before Thomas Edison came along and stole some of his ideas, and he also loved pigeons.
6) I still suck at math.
Order this book today. It's great, you'll love it, and you'll actually learn stuff. Three for the price of one!
Colin Singleton is a recent high school graduate, washed-up child prodigy, anagram-lover, inexperienced storyteller, and has just been dumped by the 19th Katherine he has dated. With a broken heart, he and his quirky, fat best friend Hassan go on a road trip in order to get away from it.
However, they end up not going very far before they take up residence in middle-of-nowhere Gutshot, Tennessee with Lindsey Lee Wells and her mother, Hollis. Hollis assigns them all to interview Gutshot residents. Colin spends most of his time trying to perfect a mathematical formula that would be able to predict the outcome of relationships.
He doesn't realize, though, that his friends have their own problems too. Hassan can never take anything seriously because that's his way of dealing with life, holding it at a distance. Lindsey puts on a different personality for different people: her boyfriend (also named Colin), the "oldsters" at the nursery home, etc.
AN ABUNDANCE OF KATHERINES is one of those rare books that is more than the sum of its parts combined. It's about acceptance, storytelling, self-confidence, finding someone you can show your private habits to. Oh, and it's also about footnotes. Lots of footnotes. With his characteristic wit and insight, John Green delivers another must-read winner.