Stand-out Author: John Green

One of the lovely things about this being my 12th year of posting Sonderbooks Stand-outs, my favorite books of my reading year, is that I can take the long view. I’m doing a series on Stand-out Authors featuring people with a book on my 2012 Sonderbooks Stand-outs who have appeared on my lists before.

There were four authors with 5 Sonderbooks Stand-outs, and there are six with 3. But only one author has a total of 4 Sonderbooks Stand-outs: John Green.


(Here are David Levithan and John Green when I accosted them at the opening of the 2010 ALA Annual Conference Exhibits.)

My son got me following John’s video blog years ago, but I may have been attracted to An Abundance of Katherines by the mathematical symbols on the cover and the storyline that included a math genius. That was the year I didn’t get all my stand-outs reviewed, but An Abundance of Katherines was #4 in Contemporary Teen Fiction on my 2007 Sonderbooks Stand-outs.

Now, really I suppose I should say that John Green has 3.33 Sonderbooks Stand-outs (which is a cool number in itself). Because on my 2008 Sonderbooks Stand-outs, he had 1.33 books make an appearance. Paper Towns was #2 in Contemporary Teen Fiction, and Let It Snow was #3. Since he only wrote a third of Let It Snow, the rest being written by Maureen Johnson and Lauren Myracle, you can see why I say he has 3.33 Stand-outs.

And then there was this year’s Sonderbooks Stand-out, the truly outstanding The Fault in Our Stars. This was #9 in Teen Fiction, but this time I didn’t separate out the Fantasy, Science Fiction, and Contemporary. The Fault in Our Stars was, in fact, the only Contemporary Teen Novel to appear on my list this year, so that makes it #1 in its category.

At the start of 2012, I got to hear John speak at ALA Midwinter Meeting in Dallas, and he’s a great speaker as well. I’m happy that he’s young — because the chances are good that he will write many more great books before he’s done. He never forgets to be Awesome!

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