An Abundance Of Katherines by John GreenAn Abundance Of Katherines by John Green

An Abundance Of Katherines

byJohn Green

Paperback | October 16, 2008

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From the #1 bestselling author of Turtles All the Way Down and The Fault in Our Stars

Michael L. Printz Honor Book
Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist
New York Times Bestseller

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.
John Green is the award-winning, #1 bestselling author of Looking for Alaska, An Abundance of Katherines, Paper Towns, Will Grayson, Will Grayson (with David Levithan), and The Fault in Our Stars. His many accolades include the Printz Medal, a Printz Honor, and the Edgar Award. He has twice been a finalist for the LA Times Book Prize. ...
Title:An Abundance Of KatherinesFormat:PaperbackDimensions:272 pages, 8.19 × 5.44 × 0.72 inPublished:October 16, 2008Publisher:Penguin Young Readers GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0142410705

ISBN - 13:9780142410707

Appropriate for ages: 13 - 17


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a great light read! This was my first book I had ever read from John Green and it was the gateway book that led me to read his other books! I definitely had such a great time reading this book. The characters are ultra humourous and I could not stop chuckling while reading this. Loved their sense of humour and their take on life. If you haven't read any of John Green's books before, try out this one!
Date published: 2017-12-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from kind of a slow read It was overall enjoyable but slow paced #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very Underrated! I've read almost all of John Green's books now, and I won;t lie, they didn't hook me in like this one did. I loved the underlying math theme to it. As a person who thinks in numbers, it was refreshing to say the least.
Date published: 2017-12-04
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Enh It was very slow to get into. I love his other works, but this one may not be the best for everyone.
Date published: 2017-11-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Nice and witty I enjoyed the mathematical theme in this YA romance and the sketches scattered throughout the novel were a nice addition to Green's witty writing style.
Date published: 2017-11-20
Rated 2 out of 5 by from okay Honestly, not my favourite John Green book. it's alright, but didn't hook me lie the other ones I read
Date published: 2017-11-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOOOOOOOVEEEE THIIIS A boy who only dates Katherine, that a little weird, this book is funny and lively. I enjoyed reading it, it made me happy. This is one of my favorite John Green books. His writing never seems to fail us.
Date published: 2017-11-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Underrated! This is my absolute favourite John Green book, it was funny and well written.
Date published: 2017-11-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Simplistic This book was overall disappointing. It was well written to a certain point, but feels like it lacks meaning. The plot really had no purpose.
Date published: 2017-10-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great great novel, give it a try
Date published: 2017-10-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesoneness He just writes sooooooo good
Date published: 2017-10-28
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok This was an interesting read full of life lessons learned through experiencing a terrible loss. Reading this provides insight into the grieving mind along with strategies to support someone experiencing los
Date published: 2017-10-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love it! This is a great read. I really really enjoyed it
Date published: 2017-10-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Liked it Classic Green. A must read for his followers
Date published: 2017-10-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Book I Have Read I read this book in a day it really kept me going. I couldn't stop it was crazy! I laughed so much its really hilarious. I definitely recommend you get this book!
Date published: 2017-10-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not John's Best Not the best John Green book there is, but still worth a read. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-10-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from John Green is a Gift to this World John Green has done it again. This book was 230 pages of pure awesome!!! And it involved math! What could be better??????
Date published: 2017-09-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not John's Best Work Not very memorable, but still had an interesting concept
Date published: 2017-09-23
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Cute this book was good, it wasn't overly sappy, which made it a decent love story.
Date published: 2017-09-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting I thought that this book was really cute and enjoyed the idea behind it. I can really get behind the idea of it and it certainly made me laugh.
Date published: 2017-08-29
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Probably my Least Favourite John Green But still good! A slow burn but has the beginnings of the hallmark John Green storytelling #plumreviews
Date published: 2017-08-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Probably my least favourite John Green But still good! Just a slow burn. It has the beginnings of the hallmark Joh Green storytelling though :)
Date published: 2017-08-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Nice story I really liked the book, but as I was around halfway through, the storyline began to feel slow and I expected a little bit more.
Date published: 2017-08-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from good a good read, emotionally-charged
Date published: 2017-08-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An Interesting Read I really enjoyed this book. It is not my favourite John Green novel, but it was really thoughtful and I enjoyed it a lot.
Date published: 2017-08-13
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Don't waste your time I just really didn't understand the point of this story. The plot was entirely predictable, and it was slow-paced throughout. It felt like a chore to read. Was kinda dissapointed since i've enjoyed some of Green's other novels/
Date published: 2017-07-26
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Meh I love John Green books, but this was kind of boring. Still think his other books are fantastic
Date published: 2017-07-21
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Don't Bother The most pretentious and least captivating John Green novel.
Date published: 2017-07-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Probably my Fav John Green Novel There was something very real and relatable about the characters. It was cute, fun-filled and a great read
Date published: 2017-06-25
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not my favourite Something about the lead character in this novel... didn't like his attitude (which I suppose was intentional). #plumreviews
Date published: 2017-06-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I didn't expect to like it The concept of the story sounded iffy to me, especially compared to other John Green books, but I actually quite enjoyed it. It's light hearted and funny, and really easy to read if you're just looking for something entertaining to destress after a long day
Date published: 2017-06-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read! You can never go wrong with a John Green book
Date published: 2017-06-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Funny and Adorable a great, laid back read that will keep you interested and laughing. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-06-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Love! Fun, quirky novel with a good plot
Date published: 2017-05-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not bad Honestly, John Green books are kind of over hyped. (Yes I have read them all). But with that said, this is definitely my favorite one. His writing is great, and his books are always well written. This one is no exception. Definitely worth the read.
Date published: 2017-05-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Great book Good book. Fun and easy read.
Date published: 2017-05-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing book John Green, as always, wrote a perfect YA novel!
Date published: 2017-04-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Bets John Green Book This book was so amazing I can't even describe it! I loved every minute and it was by far my favourite John Green novel.
Date published: 2017-04-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Young Adult Book John Green is best known for The Fault in our Stars, luckily the rest of his books are not quite as heart breaking. I like his writing because his characters are very unique and therefore more true to life. The situations and humor are also always very odd and wonderful.
Date published: 2017-04-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from If You Understand Sarcasm, You'll Understand This Book! Green's main character holds an aloof, socially awkward and complex outlook of life. Unable to read social cues, you will laugh at his thought processes and appreciate how his best friend carries him through to be one of the gang.
Date published: 2017-04-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Started off slow but really enjoyed in the end. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-03-31
Rated 3 out of 5 by from meh I love John Green novels but the ending was predictable from the beginning of the story.
Date published: 2017-03-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from My favourite This is my favourite John Green book, and the only one to live up to all of his fame, in my opinion. I'm a bit upset that this didn't get adapted into a movie, but I know that the anagram footnotes would probably not be translated well to the screen. Only John Green book I would consider re-reading.
Date published: 2017-03-26
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Story This was not one of my favourites by the author! Although the story was good, it was a slow read! I also found that the protagonist was incredibly irritating, however, the rest of the characters were enjoyable
Date published: 2017-03-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Kind of slow but still a good read. Not my favourite book by John Green but still a great book nonetheless.
Date published: 2017-03-13
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Slow book It's a good book, but the plot is very slow. Type of book that you don't want to stop reading once you've started, but once you've put it down to do something else, you won't pick it up again for a while.
Date published: 2017-03-12
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not my favourite I generally love John Greenes books but this one wasn't s favourite at all. I'd recommend his other books over this one.
Date published: 2017-03-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Fun Not my favourite of Green's books, but still enjoyable. The interactions between the quirky characters are fun to read.
Date published: 2017-03-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Hilarious Another hit by John Green! This book made me laugh, smile and hit my heart all at the same time, just beautiful. Readers will not be disappointed.
Date published: 2017-03-04
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Boring!!! Such a terrible book!! Boring and awful characters that weren't supposed to be awful and unlikeable but so so so were.
Date published: 2017-03-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from typical After reading this book, I am starting to sense a pattern in John Green's novels. Either way, I couldn't stop reading this book because (1) Colin is such a nerd and I love him (2) Lindsey Lee Wells is an ever-changing character based on the people she is with and so am I and (3) it's the cliche I was perfectly looking for.
Date published: 2017-02-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Love it!! Out of greens books this one is one of my favourites, it had a hint of humour, love and everything in between, it was a quick and easy read for a reading week book,
Date published: 2017-02-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good book :) I'll admit, other books by John Green are better, but this one is still good. It's funny, a bit slow at times, but majority of it is well written and quite enjoyable.
Date published: 2017-02-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from meh dont REALLY know how i feel about this. couldnt really connect
Date published: 2017-02-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a cute book! John Green is always good. I loved this one particularly because of all the equations and graphs. The main character is smart, funny and very different. This is a very cute love story. I love the touch of humor Green gives to every single one of his book. It really felt like a teenage boy wrote this book. A+!!!!!
Date published: 2017-02-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Cute story but slow read Really cute story line but slow read.
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pretty good I really like it! Beginning is a little slow to get into though.
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good! Good but hard to get invested in at first
Date published: 2017-01-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great story! I bought this book last year, but didn't read it for a while because i had other books to read before it! John Green continues to amaze me with his writings, i truly loved this story and it ties in a lot of humour. Would definitely recommend.
Date published: 2017-01-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really good! The story was not what I expected but it kept me wanting to read more and more!
Date published: 2017-01-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from so so so good. An Abundance of Katherine's was really interesting in its own ways. it's different than most books i've read, but so real.
Date published: 2017-01-21
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Okay novel, compared to other Green works. I love John Green's novels, but I found this one to harder to get into compared to his other works. A good read overall as it's got some witty lines from the main character, but not sure if I'd read again after having already read it once. I'd still recommend to those who enjoy John Green!
Date published: 2017-01-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from honest this book is good John green writes really good books this one is pretty good
Date published: 2017-01-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A good read. A really light hearted, funny book. John has the perfect tone and humour for young adult fiction, and never disappoints.
Date published: 2017-01-13
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Not my favorite I really love John Green's books. This one, however, I didn't like at all. I couldn't even finish it because I thought it was boring and I didn't really understand the plot.
Date published: 2017-01-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good but it got slow at some parts loved the book besides the fact that it gotta a little slow
Date published: 2017-01-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it I loved the ending a lot and the book was well written and funny
Date published: 2017-01-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read It's a funny entertaining book that I would recommend to anyone. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book Concept was very interesting
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good book I liked the concept of the book it was different from his other stories.
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 2 out of 5 by from No Awful. This was a waste of my time. The storyline was flat, the math references were cringe-worthy, and I have not read a John Green novel since then.
Date published: 2016-12-15
Rated 3 out of 5 by from An Abundance of Katherines Interesting plot, but John Green's books all start to read the same as each other.
Date published: 2016-12-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! Such a cute read! #plumreview
Date published: 2016-12-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from good john green tends to get stuck writing the same tropes. while this is surely not my favourite ya or john green book, it is still an enjoyable read
Date published: 2016-12-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really enjoyable One of my favourite of John Green's books. A bit of a slow read and it can take a while to get into but when you do it's really good
Date published: 2016-12-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Cute! I really liked the ending and I feel like it fits the story really well.
Date published: 2016-12-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from One of my more favorite John Green books Unlike some of the other reviews, this was actually one of my favorite John Green books.
Date published: 2016-11-28
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Meh Didn't like this one as much as his other novels.
Date published: 2016-11-27
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Okay It was okay. It's the least favourite out of all the john green books.
Date published: 2016-11-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Hmm... I still liked it, but it was my least favourite of John Greens books.
Date published: 2016-11-14
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Ugh! Every time I read a John green book, I promise myself it will be my last john green book. His writing is amazing however I hate they way he ends his books. It's always a disaster. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-11-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from yaaassss i thought this book was really quirky and cute. the protagonist is definitely really interesting. I would consider this to be one of John Green's better books, as well as one of the more underrated ones.
Date published: 2016-11-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I loved it This book is a little bit different from the other books I have read by the same author. That being said, John Green is a great author and this is another success in my opinion.
Date published: 2016-11-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Meh This is my least favourite John Green book so far. That being said, this book was still a pretty good read.
Date published: 2016-11-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from yay out of all the john green books aaok is def my most favorited and I'm literally lending it to 500 different people and I would rate is 9/10
Date published: 2016-11-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Solid getting-over-a-breakup read for nerdy types This book does a great job of conveying the feeling of getting dumped while also giving us some idea of why the protagonist gets dumped--so I'm both sympathetic and wanting Colin to figure it out, which works for the plot. Colin is pretty self-absorbed, his best friend is almost 100% comic relief, and I wish we got to know the female lead better, but overall this book has plenty of funny moments and I liked the use of the footnote gimmick.
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Started slow The beginning was really slow, I left it for an entire year, then went back to it when there was nothing else. I thought i wouldn't like it, but it was cute, and funny.
Date published: 2016-02-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Hard to get into but worth it in the end Slow beginnings, but eventually you learn to love the characters. Hassan is soooo funny, and the math stuff is great for the logical person. I can really relate to Colin, being an engineer raised by engineers so needless to say I tend to use reason over emotion. It's got a really good lesson too, I do like those John Green lessons. It's the first John Green book I read and it's peaked my interest to read the other ones!
Date published: 2015-09-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from unrealistic yet intriguing This novel was fairly unrealistic. The chances of knowing yet DATING say 5 people named Katherine is slim to none, so dating 19 is simply unreasonable. However you will find yourself forgetting the nonsense and getting lost in another great novel by John Green.
Date published: 2015-07-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read This book was incredible. I do admit that it started slow, and I definitely had my doubts, but then it got so interesting! Do not let the strange storyline fool you, this book is amazing and worth the read.
Date published: 2015-07-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Read! Absoltely amazing read with a mix of several book genres! John Green is an amazing author and I can't wait to see what he comes up with next!
Date published: 2015-07-15
Rated 1 out of 5 by from boring Very slow, boring, no real story line at all, didn't fall in love with the characters like I usually do. Reading this book was a waste of time. Very disappointing, I read the fault in our stars, paper towns, and looking for alaska and loved all three a lot, so i thought I would love an abundance of katherine's too. I was wrong.
Date published: 2014-12-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from the Love Theory John Green's books are delightful and reflective at the same time. "An Abundance of Katherines" did not disappoint. The story would probably relate to a younger audience but this over 60 reader thoroughly enjoyed it. I appreciate his musings on life and relationships. The characters were easy to empathize with: Colin, the young genius who looks to theorize everything, even relationships Hassan, his friend, who wonders what he should do with his life Lindsey, the girl they meet after they decide to go on a road trip together. The cast of characters includes parents, city slickers and country folk, and a matriarch with a town factory to oversee. The story unfolds like a road trip. It is quickly moving with lots of philosophy and humor thrown in. Great read!
Date published: 2014-10-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Totally worth reading I bought this book for an airplane flight a couple months ago, and to be honest, this was probably my favorite John Green book that I have read so far! The humor, the plot, the characters were all so real and hilarious. I feel that I could relate to the characters, because I am approximately their age. Colin?s best friend Hassan is funny, and honest and there was one time, specifically when a dialogue was so ridiculous and amusing, that I could not stop laughing for minutes, and each time I would read it over and over, it would have the same effect on me. It was amazing, and I loved it. It did take me a while to read, and it could be slow at times, but nowadays, we are just so caught up in action books, and drama that we always want more and more. This book was heartfelt, entertaining and real in its own way. Colin, a child prodigy, is suffering from a breakup, from his 19th Katherine. His friend Hassan has an idea to go on a road trip, and they end up in Gutshot, Tennessee. The book continues with romance and adventure, and in the end, Colin breaks his chain of Katherines. At times I felt bad for Colin since Hassan repetitively reminds him that his knowledge is not interesting. The footnotes were helpful and humorous too, and I personally though it was a great way to show Colin's knowledge. The only thing was that I could not always keep up with Colin's formula, since I'm not the math type, but that didn't keep me from understanding the story. Overall, I would definitely recommend this book, it is totally worth reading and it's now one of my favorites.
Date published: 2014-09-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing Read! I really enjoyed John's style of writing and the facts I learned whilst reading were really interesting. Overall its a really good book.
Date published: 2014-01-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Read! I enjoyed reading through An Abundance of Katherines by John Green. It’s my favorite of all his books. The story is well told, and doesn't leave any hanging pieces like Paper Towns. The story is about Colin Singleton, a high school graduate who is a child prodigy and has dated 19 girls named Katherine. Him and his best friend Hassan go on a road trip after Colin broke up with Katherine XIV to help him clear his head. The story explores the value and meaning of relationships, as well as one’s sense of self: who we are and how we define ourselves. This is a theme somewhat similar to Paper Towns, but I find in Abundance of Katherines, John Green gives a more complete story. As the main character Lindsey Wells would say, it has a beginning, middle, and an end, as well as a good moral. Also, unlike Paper Towns and Looking for Alaska, none of the main characters disappear for a major portion of the story. I love stories that explore how we perceive relationships, and I believe John Green does a good job of this in An Abundance of Katherines.
Date published: 2013-10-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from RN Likeable characters. Storyline lacking a bit but still a decent read.
Date published: 2013-10-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really good but such a slow read I won't lie: this book is really really good. Out of the three Green books I've read, I think this may be the best one (yes, it even beats The Fault in Our Stars). HOWEVER, this book took me two weeks to finish. I finish most book within a couple of days, if not a week at the most. An Abundance of Katherines is one of those books where you do not want to read more than two chapters a day. Unlike The Fault in Our Stars, there is nothing that makes you keep flipping the pages. This coming of age story was written so so well. I completely understand why this is a Printz Honor. I loved the footnotes Green included. It made the reader feel that Colin is in fact a genius and prodigy by defining big words, terms in different languages, or giving more detail to presented ideas. There is a stream of consciousness in which Green labels "The Beginning" or "The Beginning of the End" or something along those lines. It was not until the end where I made a connection between two of the Katherines and I was stunned. There are a lot of literary wonders in this novel, and frankly I am jealous of Green's talent!
Date published: 2013-05-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Plenty of humour, great characters 3.75 stars Colin is a child prodigy and has just been dumped by his 19th girlfriend named Katherine. He and his best (and only) friend, Hassam, decide to go on a road trip and end up in a small town called Gutshot, Tennessee. I really liked this. There was plenty of humour in the book and I really enjoyed the characters. The ebook had a Q&A with the author, which I also enjoyed. One things I didn't like was that there were footnotes – hard to check with an ebook. I often don't like (and don't bother) reading footnotes, but there were some here I would have liked to. I did skim through them when I got to the end, but at that point, I didn't always remember what they referred to. I will read more by this author.
Date published: 2012-07-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Brilliant -- in more ways than one... So what happens when a prodigy - not a genius -- gets dumped for the 19th time by a girl named Katherine? Well, the prodigy, Colin, is convinced to take a road trip with his ever-joking best friend. This is a great story that mixes math, theories, friendship and love into a realistic setting. The characters are all fantastically developed. Don't hesitate to read!
Date published: 2008-11-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from true angst Colin has theory: he believes he can come up with a mathmatical theory that will figure out who will dump who in a relationship. Colin is a genius who has lived his life in fear that his genius will never be enough, and he will disappear into obscurity. To get over his latest girlfriend (all of whom are named Katherine), he and his best friend head on a road trip. I loved the scenes where Colin deals with his feelings of being dumped, it rang true to me.
Date published: 2008-10-26

Read from the Book

(one)The morning after noted child prodigy Colin Singleton graduated fromhigh school and got dumped for the nineteenth time by a girl named Katherine,he took a bath. Colin had always preferred baths; one of his general policiesin life was never to do anything standing up that could just as easily bedone lying down. He climbed into the tub as soon as the water got hot, andhe sat and watched with a curiously blank look on his face as the water overtookhim. The water inched up his legs, which were crossed and folded intothe tub. He did recognize, albeit faintly, that he was too long, and too big, forthis bathtub—he looked like a mostly grown person playing at being a kid.As the water began to splash over his skinny but unmuscled stomach,he thought of Archimedes. When Colin was about four, he read a bookabout Archimedes, the Greek philosopher who’d discovered that volumecould be measured by water displacement when he sat down in the bathtub.Upon making this discovery, Archimedes supposedly shouted “Eureka!”[1] and then ran naked through the streets. The book said that manyimportant discoveries contained a “Eureka moment.” And even then, Colinvery much wanted to have some important discoveries, so he asked hismom about it when she got home that evening.“Mommy, am I ever going to have a Eureka moment?”“Oh, sweetie,” she said, taking his hand. “What’s wrong?”“I wanna have a Eureka Moment,” he said, the way another kid mighthave expressed longing for a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle.She pressed the back of her hand to his cheek and smiled, her face soclose to his that he could smell coffee and makeup. “Of course, Colin baby.Of course you will.”But mothers lie. It’s in the job description.Colin took a deep breath and slid down, immersing his head. I am crying, hethought, opening his eyes to stare through the soapy, stinging water. I feellike crying, so I must be crying, but it’s impossible to tell because I’m underwater.But he wasn’t crying. Curiously, he felt too depressed to cry. Too hurt.It felt as if she’d taken the part of him that cried.He opened the drain in the tub, stood up, toweled off, and got dressed.When he exited the bathroom, his parents were sitting together on his bed.It was never a good sign when both his parents were in his room at the sametime. Over the years it had meant:1. Your grandmother/grandfather/Aunt-Suzie-whom-you-never-met-but-trust-me-she-was-nice-and-it’s-a-shame is dead.2. You’re letting a girl named Katherine distract you from your studies.3. Babies are made through an act that you will eventually find intriguingbut for right now will just sort of horrify you, and also sometimespeople do stuff that involves baby-making parts that does not actuallyinvolve making babies, like for instance kiss each other in placesthat are not on the face.It never meant:4. A girl named Katherine called while you were in the bathtub. She’ssorry. She still loves you and has made a terrible mistake and is waitingfor you downstairs.But even so, Colin couldn’t help but hope that his parents were in the roomto provide news of the Number 4 variety. He was a generally pessimistic person,but he seemed to make an exception for Katherines: he always felt theywould come back to him. The feeling of loving her and being loved by herwelled up in him, and he could taste the adrenaline in the back of histhroat, and maybe it wasn’t over, and maybe he could feel her hand in hisagain and hear her loud, brash voice contort itself into a whisper to sayI-love-you in the very quick and quiet way that she had always said it. Shesaid I love you as if it were a secret, and an immense one.His dad stood up and stepped toward him. “Katherine called my cell,”he said. “She’s worried about you.” Colin felt his dad’s hand on his shoulder,and then they both moved forward, and then they were hugging.“We’re very concerned,” his mom said. She was a small woman withcurly brown hair that had one single shock of white toward the front. “Andstunned,” she added. “What happened?”“I don’t know,” Colin said softly into his dad’s shoulder. “She’s just—she’d had enough of me. She got tired. That’s what she said.” And then hismom got up and there was a lot of hugging, arms everywhere, and his momwas crying. Colin extricated himself from the hugs and sat down on his bed.He felt a tremendous need to get them out of his room immediately, like ifthey didn’t leave he would blow up. Literally. Guts on the walls; his prodigiousbrain emptied out onto his bedspread.“Well, at some point we need to sit down and assess your options,” hisdad said. His dad was big on assessing. “Not to look for silver linings, but itseems like you’ll now have some free time this summer. A summer class atNorthwestern, maybe?”“I really need to be alone, just for today,” Colin answered, trying to conveya sense of calm so that they would leave and he wouldn’t blow up. “Socan we assess tomorrow?”“Of course, sweetie,” his mom said. “We’ll be here all day. You justcome down whenever you want and we love you and you’re so so special,Colin, and you can’t possibly let this girl make you think otherwise becauseyou are the most magnificent, brilliant boy—” And right then, the mostspecial, magnificent, brilliant boy bolted into his bathroom and puked hisguts out. An explosion, sort of.“Oh, Colin!” shouted his mom.“I just need to be alone,” Colin insisted from the bathroom. “Please.”When he came out, they were gone.For the next fourteen hours without pausing to eat or drink or throw upagain, Colin read and reread his yearbook, which he had received just fourdays before. Aside from the usual yearbook crap, it contained seventy-twosignatures. Twelve were just signatures, fifty-six cited his intelligence,twenty-five said they wished they’d known him better, eleven said it was funto have him in English class, seven included the words “pupillary sphincter,”[2] and a stunning seventeen ended, “Stay Cool!” Colin Singleton couldno more stay cool than a blue whale could stayskinny or Bangladesh couldstayrich. Presumably, those seventeen people were kidding. He mulled thisover—and considered how twenty-five of his classmates, some of whomhe’d been attending school with for twelve years, could possibly havewanted to “know him better.” As if they hadn’t had a chance.But mostly for those fourteen hours, he read and reread KatherineXIX’s inscription:Col,Here’s to all the places we went. And all the places we’ll go. Andhere’s me, whispering again and again and again and again:iloveyou.yrs forever, K-a-t-h-e-r-i-n-eEventually, he found the bed too comfortable for his state of mind, so he laydown on his back, his legs sprawled across the carpet. He anagrammed “yrsforever” until he found one he liked: sorry fever. And then he lay there in hisfever of sorry and repeated the now memorized note in his head and wantedto cry, but instead he only felt this aching behind his solar plexus. Cryingadds something: crying is you, plus tears. But the feeling Colin had wassome horrible opposite of crying. It was you, minus something. He keptthinking about one word—forever—and felt the burning ache just beneathhis rib cage.It hurt like the worst ass-kicking he’d ever gotten. And he’d gotten plenty.(1) Greek: “I have found it.”(2) More on that later.

Editorial Reviews

An ALA Best Book for Young AdultsA Horn Book Fanfare Best Book of the YearA Booklist Editors’ ChoiceA Kirkus Best Book of the Year"Fully fun, challengingly complex and entirely entertaining." —Kirkus, starred review“Laugh-out-loud funny…a coming-of-age American road trip that is at once a satire of and tribute to its many celebrated predecessors.” –Horn Book, starred review“Imagine an operating room at the start of a daring but well-rehearsed procedure and you will have something of the atmosphere of “An Abundance of Katherines”: every detail considered, the action unrolling with grace and inevitability.” --New York Times Book Review“Funny, sweet, and unpredictable.” –The Minneapolis Star Tribune“The laugh-out-loud humor ranges from delightfully sophomoric to subtly intellectual.” –Booklist, starred review