I recently read John Green's Paper Towns, a young adult novel about high schooler Quentin Jacobsen and his lifelong crush on his neighbor, Margo. It's my favorite of Green's books, in large part because it's the first one in which the female love interest has a meaningful, multidimensional existence outside of the mind of the male narrator. The book is largely about, in fact, Quentin coming to terms with the fact that the reality of Margo is very different than the way he perceives her. And it's very very funny and great and everyone should read it, even though Green read in Seattle two weeks ago but totally snubbed Portland.
I just ran across a post on John Green's blog (stumbled upon it while I was, you know, waiting for the New York Review of Books site to load) in which he defends himself against the criticism that Margo is a "Manic Pixie Dream Girl."
Not only do I agree with John's defense of Margo, who is awesome, but I had never heard that term before, but it perfectly encapsulates
1. Why I Intensely Dislike Natalie Portman; and
2. Why I Intensely Dislike It When Men That I Date Like Natalie Portman
Now, back to the unexamined credos upon which Realism is built.