The Secret Review, or How I learned to DFTBA and Love the Puppy-Sized Elephants

“I am about to let you in on a secret.”

“A group hidden in plain sight.”

“Nestled in the depths of the inter-webs.”

“Protected by the sacred council of the YouTubers.”                    

“Managed by the White Girl Clan of Tumblr.”

“Meetings are everywhere, the only hint of their locations: in the coded messages of the Twitterverse.”

“Are you ready to join us? We are many, and are always seeking new blood.”

“Excited, I see, good, good. I’m glad you don’t take this lightly. You must be special if you’ve made it this far. Especially on faith.”

“Here take my hand. I need to see your wrists.”

“Good, those are the muscles of a reader, a man of the computer, a patron of words, a gamer. You will do well here.”

“Now take a drink from this.”

“You taste the pizza? Good. You are ready. Ready to receive the truth. Ready to know.”


“What… yeah… how did you guess?”

*Whispers, whispers*

“The title… DAMN IT!” *Lowers hood to reveal Brandon Scott with his face covered in sharpie marks*

“Well the cats out of that bag. I suppose I should just get to the review…” *light chuckle*

Okay, guys I have to admit something. It has been a long time coming, and honestly I just should have told you. I just didn’t know what you would think of it. Also I would not be able to make the “build up to a ridiculously un-serious topic” joke if I had.  But the time has come to reveal…

*Grabs hoodie and pulls it up over head, throwing it into the air. Catching on a nearby drone’s turbine, causing it to explode into a firework of morally clean awesomeness*

I am a Nerdfighter, and I am proud!

Okay, so for those who have no idea what I am talking about, let me educate you on the internet phenomenon that is Nerdfighteria.

With a fantastically helpful video:

If, for any reason, any reason at all, you just popped off to go watch several hours of YouTube, don’t worry. I’ll still be here waiting. After all, I have shown you an entire new world to explore. So, go ahead. Learn, love, and feel yourself turn from a being of blood and guts, to a being of pure awesome. It will be an interesting process, if you start to feel like it might be too much for you, go have some Chipotle. It’ll fix everything.

(Don’t worry, these jokes will make sense soon.)

Alright you all good? Then we can continue.

The reason I brought all of this up is because I recently read a book that got to me. Talking about things that I really needed to hear.

I’ll give you one guess who wrote it.

And since it’s, as we speak, being made into a movie, it seemed like as good a time as any to bring it up. A profound piece of literature called Paper Towns

I had attempted to read Mr. Green’s books before — and I realize I have to hand in my man-card for saying this — I actually could not handle it. Me and cancer… have a bit of a history. It was not me that had it, if you catch my drift (though it is not as bad as you just assumed). So the book was not for me. Nothing against it, at all. It is a testament to his writing prowess that it effected me that much.

On that subject, I have to say that John Green has always had a way with comedy in his writing. Even in the story about cancer he made me laugh. He just has this way of describing things that both brings instant clarity on what he’s talking about, and still manages to sound like the craziest thing you ever heard. He understands how to create people who seem real, because real people are that crazy.

So, unto Paper Towns proper. It’s a love story, as all his books are. But, in a way, it’s not a story about loving a girl. It’s a story about loving a person. That’s a very big distinction. He may be chasing after some idealized female at the start, but at the end he is chasing a person. A flawed human being.

That’s profound. It’s all well and good to say “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” but what about judging a person on the pages of them we haven’t read? The whole book is filled with questions like this. Questions that are part of what it means to be human.

The thing that made me love this book so much is not the questions. No, it’s two things — quotes rather– that got to me. In the words of, well me “You’ll follow a person to the ends of the earth if they can just tell you one truth. One perfect, beautiful truth.” and these are some of the most beautiful truths I have heard in a while:

“Here’s what’s not beautiful about it: from here, you can’t see the rust or the cracked paint or whatever, but you can tell what the place really is. You see how fake it all is. It’s not even hard enough to be made out of plastic. It’s a paper town. I mean, look at it, Q: look at all those culs-de-sacs, those streets that turn in on themselves, all the houses that were built to fall apart. All those paper people living in their paper houses, burning the future to stay warm. All the paper kids drinking beer some bum bought for them at the paper convenience store. Everyone demented with the mania of owning things. All the things paper-thin and paper-frail. And all the people, too. I’ve lived here for eighteen years and I have never once in my life come across anyone who cares about anything that matters.”    – John Green, Paper Towns

and this one. Which very nearly made me cry when I read it.

“It is so hard to leave—until you leave. And then it is the easiest goddamned thing in the world.”
― John Green, Paper Towns

So, yeah. This is now quite possibly one of my favorite books, and finishing it also has the added benefit of making me –in my mind– a true Nerdfighter, finally.

So, on that, I leave you with this video to make you laugh:

and the customary closing statement of my people:

“Don’t forget to be awesome!”

Now, if you will excuse me…



Did you like the article? Dislike? Tell me about it in the comments. I would love to hear your opinions. If interested in specific articles, or want to write as a guest; you can message me at Thanks for reading!


6 thoughts on “The Secret Review, or How I learned to DFTBA and Love the Puppy-Sized Elephants

  1. I shudder to think what I’d see if I watch the Nerdfighters video, and yet I feel myself oddly drawn to it. Must… resist…

    This is what I was talking about. It’s here, but it’s covered up. You show the vulnerability with the honest admission that the book affected you, then you use comedy as a way of moving on and not letting people dwell in that vulnerable spot.

    I see it, though. It’s there.


    • Well, despite most of my fiction on the site being dark in nature, I don’t like to linger on sad things for to long. I’d much prefer to entertaining my readers (even if that means scaring them.)


  2. Pingback: Trailer Talk: Paper Towns, Pixels, Tommorowland, and Mission: Impossible – Rouge Nation | Coolerbs Reviews

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