23. ilb 06. – 16.09.2023
Portrait John Green
© Hartwig Klappert

John Green

John Green was born in 1977 in Indianapolis in the USA. He attended a boarding school in Alabama and read English and Religious Studies in Ohio before becoming a professional writer.

His début »Looking for Alaska« (2005) has been compared to J.D.Salinger’s »Catcher in the Rye« and was an overnight success, making him one of the most important new voices in youth literature. »Looking for Alaska« is the story of the loner Miles, who leaves home for a boarding school in Culver Creek. The shocking death of Alaska, with whom he had fallen in love, turns his life upside down. »An Abundance of Katherines« (2006), Green’s second novel, is about Colin, who has fallen in love with 19 girls called Katherine and been cheated on by every one of them. »Paper Towns« (2008) focuses on Quentin and his passion for the eccentric Margo. When Margo suddenly vanishes, Quentin realises that he knew almost nothing about her, and that she was actually very different from the the person he thought he knew. A »little work of art« was how the »FAS« described »Will Grayson, Will Grayson« (2010), written together with David Levithan, about two boys called Will Grayson who avoid falling in love out of the fear of making mistakes, until they accidentally meet one night. Green’s latest book, »The Fault in Our Stars« (2012) is about 16-year-old Hazel. She has cancer and can’t bear her self-help group, until one day she meets Gus, who makes her dreams come true. Green’s moving, hopeful and positive book about a terrible illness is not just »close to genius« (»Time Magazine«), it also broke sales records in the USA and was enormously popular with both young readers and adults. Green’s literary significance can hardly be overstated, as he is now considered »one of the most important writers in America today. Because he writes for 15-year-olds. And he writes books which are timeless, which somehow hover just over the present, so that one can’t say for sure in which year they are set, just which moment begins and never stops: that moment in which one recognises oneself« (»FAZ«).

John Green runs the YouTube video channel »Vlogbrothers« together with his brother Hank, which has to date more than 230 million hits. He has been nominated three times for German Youth Literature Award, and has won the Michael L. Printz Award (2006) and the Corine Prize for Literature (2010). John Green lives with his wife and their son Henry in Indianapolis.

© internationales literaturfestival berlin


Eine wie Alaska
München, 2007
[Ü: Sophie Zeitz]

Die erste Liebe (nach 19 vergeblichen Versuchen)
München, 2008
[Ü: Sophie Zeitz]

Paper Towns
Dutton Books
New York, 2008

Übersetzerin: Sophie Zeitz