1) I love (love, LOVED) Will Grayson, Will Grayson.
2) 8,000 people have told me to read Alaska.
3) It won the Printz award.
4) The Vlog brothers are pretty awesome.
So I expected to like it, and hoped for a Will Grayson, Will Grayson OMG-I-love-this-book response to it. The first sign that I'd get what I hoped for was reading the acknowledgments--if that perfunctory page is witty and entertaining and impressively written, it's usually a sign that the reader is in for a treat.
I loved Miles's voice, I loved the characterization--all of the characters in Alaska are rich and real and satisfyingly complex. The story balances hilarious mischief and realistic teenage experiences/emotions/relationships with moving meditations on life, love, tragedy, and religion. I have such a soft spot for books that touch on Big Philosophical Issues in organic and entertaining ways. Looking for Alaska did such a fantastic job of that.
And then as I flipped to the last page, I found this post-it someone had snuck into the copy I saved from a closing Borders: (warning: text of the last paragraph is visible!)
Love, love, love it.