Released September 25, 2018, Hank Green the co-founder of DFTBA records, Vidcon, Crash Course, Sci Show, half of the Vlog Brothers, and more, wrote his debut novel the #1 New York Times Best Selling Novel An Absolutely Remarkable Thing. Which I must say is absolutely remarkable (I know I know … I hate me too).
The story follows April May a recent college grad who is the first to discover the “Carls” an unexplanable samurai sculpture found in major cities all over the world at the exact same time. April becomes famous over night for posting a silly video online of her interviewing the statue and eventually finds herself at the center of something much much bigger than herself.
Green’s imaginings of a slightly different United States is outstanding. He changes minor details of our current world in an over arching story on what would happen if the entire planet was given a puzzle to solve. With references to YouTube, Twitter, the state of our media, and an alternate timeline of what would have happened if Hillary won the Presidential election, the story becomes extremely easy to relate to and really hits you with the message.
An Absolutely Remarkable Thing showcases the dangers of social media and branding yourself in the public sphere while also tackling the idea of creating a more unified world.
April May becomes a powerful example of what can happen to people when they find popularity too quickly or aren’t prepared on how to handle it. Green’s own experience on the inside of internet fame provides a unique insight that comes out through her actions and feelings.
The fact that our main character is LGBTQIA+ is also a solid win. While she spends most of the book telling the world that she is not infact Bi-sexual, she does eventually own her identity. It is important to mention that through the entire novel her feelings are geared toward her girlfriend Maya which is some awesome and realistic representation I might add.
I picked up this read during a serious reading slump but it kept me wanting more to the point that I finished it in just 2 days. Unexpected to me, this story is actually going to be a part of a series of New Adult Sci-Fi Fantasy novels, which became very apparent by the end of the book. Though many weren’t ready for this, for the most part there is excitement.
I’m looking forward to the day that Hank releases his second novel, and for now I’m recommending that everyone read his first. It’s a powerful story with great representation and a well needed message.