An Abundance of Katherines – John Green

An Abundance of Katherines – John GreenTitle: An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
Publishing Info: September 21, 2006 by Penguin
Source: Library
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: October 15, 2012
Related Posts: The Fault in Our Stars, Will Grayson, Will Grayson, Looking for Alaska

When it comes to relationships, Colin Singleton's type is girls named Katherine. And when it comes to girls named Katherine, Colin is always getting dumped. Nineteen times, to be exact. On a road trip miles from home, this anagram-happy, washed-up child prodigy has ten thousand dollars in his pocket, a bloodthirsty feral hog on his trail, and an overweight, Judge Judy-loving best friend riding shotgun ? but no Katherines. Colin is on a mission to prove The Theorem of Underlying Katherine Predictability, which he hopes will predict the future of any relationship, avenge Dumpees everywhere, and finally win him the girl. Love, friendship, and a dead Austro-Hungarian archduke add up to surprising and heart-changing conclusions in this ingeniously layered comic novel about reinventing oneself by Printz medalist John Green, acclaimed author of Looking for Alaska.


Well my friends, this will be my last John Green book. I just don’t care for his style of writing and I almost find it surprising that so many other people that I share very similar tastes with do.

When I picked up AN ABUNDANCE OF KATHERINES, I was hoping for something super nerdy, like the Big Bang Theory or something. I can do nerdy. I loved READY PLAYER ONE. But I felt like we never got into the whole math behind it until later. I had really wanted it to be the underlying theme of the whole book and it kind of seemed like an afterthought.

Also, why nineteen Katherines. NINETEEN? Really. You’re gonna sit there and tell me that one boy can not only meet but date nineteen Katherine’s, all of which spell their name exactly the same way. In this day and age when people are spelling names in every which way possible, I don’t believe. Call me a skeptic, but I think I’m being reasonable. And why? What’s so special about a Katherine? I just didn’t get the whole premise behind it and I was hoping for some kind of humorous explanation for it. I was let down.

I was also upset with Colin, who whined the whole book. The rest of the characters were fine, but a whiny MC? No thanks. ALSO upset by the whole book taking place in Tennessee. At first I was like, Oh. It’s a road trip. Huh, well okay, I can handle road trip. And then we spent the whole time in Gutshot, TN. Totally not into it.

The book was okay, but not better than okay at all for me. I was disappointed by a lot of it.

Audiobook impressions: Jeff Woodman did a pretty good job with all of the voices. He had very distinct voices for all of the characters and it was really easy to follow along with. They also did this cool thing when the characters were on the phone so the person on the other end sounded really distant. Fun accents and even speech impediments for those who have them. The narration was actually pretty enjoyable.


Colin Singleton: Colin was way, way too whiny for me. You want to know how to stop getting dumped by Katherines? Stop dating Katherines. You’re probably getting dumped because you’re forcing relationships by dating only girls with exact same name spelled the exact same way. That’s not how it works!
Hassan: He was a pretty nice comic relief, though we do see a little bit more to him here and there. I like that even though he’s the funny one, he’s Colin’s voice of reason because Colin can’t see it himself.
Lindsay: I think Lindsay was my favorite character. She seemed the most dynamic and she really was the easiest person to like, for me. I think I would have actually been a lot more interested if it had been Lindsay’s story we got instead of Colin’s. I would have loved to see the story of a girl in Gutshot, TN dating some QB idiot who has an interesting summer when these two random guys show up from Chicago, one of them with a crazy theory. THAT story I would have liked much more.


Get it from the library.

It was okay… but not something that I feel I can recommend. I totally re-envisioned the whole story from Lindsey’s perspective and it just seemed so much more interesting. John Green is a big hit but maybe his books just aren’t for me!


Hi, I'm Brittany!
Hi, I'm Brittany!

I'm an avid reader, candle-maker, and audiobook lover! Here you'll find book reviews, fun blog posts, and my other loves of photography & craft beer!

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14 thoughts on “An Abundance of Katherines – John Green

  1. Amber

    I know what you mean with this book. I was completely turned off by Colin because of his whining. I liked Lindsay and would have loved to hear her story rather than his. I liked the setting, but I wish there’d been more to it. The whole “Katherine” thing bothered me too, 19? Really? 19? O-k then. It was such a struggle to finish this which is amazing because it’s not long at all but it took me a couple weeks to. I’m sorry this didn’t work out for you. This was my third John Green book (TFIOS was first, then LFA), and my least favorite. I have Paper Towns and Will Grayson, but I’m in no hurry to read either. Except Will Grayson, which I started a long time ago.

  2. Elizabeth

    Sorry you didn’t like this one that much. I did, but agree that Collin was pretty whiny and the whole conceit of dating 19 Katherines was lame. But I have liked all the John Green I’ve read, so maybe he’s just my thing. No accounting for taste!

  3. Kelly

    I STILL haven’t read any John Green, which I know is pretty much an abomination by now. Sounds like I won’t be starting with this one though!

  4. Alice in Readerland

    I actually haven’t read any John Green books yet. I was just going to pick up this one, and am so glad I read your review first because if there’s one thing I can’t stand in books it’s a really whiny main character! Lindsay does sound like a great character, though; I agree, a book about her would’ve been awesome! 🙂

    Alice @ Alice in Readerland

  5. KateB

    I still need to read my first John Green book.

    And as a Kathryn who ALWAYS wished to have her name spelled “Katherine” I can totally understand what’s so special about them…. /shifty


    Also, just wanted to say I really like how your write your audiobook reviews with comments on the book itself as well as it’s narration.

    1. Brittany

      Haha I like your Katherine comment 🙂 Good point!
      I’m not sure what it is… I’m just not connecting with John Green books so far. I’m willing to give it another shot though! And I only read my first a couple months ago, so don’t worry about that!
      Maybe my problem is that I’ve been using audiobooks… but I’m also afraid that I might put an actual copy down and not pick it up again if I get frustrated. I guess we’ll see!

  6. Lily

    I’m a huge John green fan but when I picked up this book I didn’t get to finish it, it was lacking something, there was just something boring , I didn’t like this one

    1. Brittany

      Thanks – that makes me feel a little bit better about being disappointed in it lol. Have any suggestions (besides TFIOS) that would be a better bet? I just feel like I’m mising something by not enjoying the two JG books I’ve read so far!

      1. tigerlilyrachel

        My two favorites are Looking for Alaska and Paper Towns. I actually didn’t like TFioS either (shocker! I feel like everyone loved this book), so maybe you would like his other ones? Looking for Alaska was the book that made me fall in love with YA when I was a teen. His style is pretty similar throughout his books, though, so he might just not be the man for you. But I’d recommend giving Looking for Alaska a try before you give up on him (and I only say this because I practically force that book on everyone I know lol).

      2. Brittany

        Thanks, I’ll definitely try it! I’m glad you feel the same about about TFioS!! I just didn’t like it nearly as much as I hoped I would. I’ll try Looking for Alaska – and as a hard copy, not an audiobook. Thanks for the suggestions! 🙂

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