The Fault in Our Stars
January 10th 2012
Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 12, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now.
Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault.
Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind.
I kind of really don't know how to write this review. I mean, I kind of don't want to because whatever I have to say about this book, everyone else has said, and I don't know if I can sum up my feelings in a way that will do this book justice. Because I don't think that anything but the book can do it justice. Though I'm going to give it a ruddy good try!
TFiOS is, no doubt, John's best book (that I've read by him), and regardless of whether you like John Green or whether you think he's crap, I still think you should read this book. Because it's just beautiful. Sure, like his other books, all the characters are a little too clever and a little too pretentious at times, but they're kind of glorious. And it's not because they have cancer or whatever (even though they do and it sucks because cancer and dying sucks). I don't really know why they were so great. I guess they were just, like, great people with great minds and it made me sad because they kind of had this need to do something great that they would be remembered for because they were already great. They didn't need to do anything great to become great, y'know? They just needed more people to remember how great they were. Yeah. This is what happens when I try to express my feelings in anything other than a keyboard smash.
I could kind of tell what was going to happen in the book. I won't say anything, but it didn't come as a surprise to me. It was what I was expecting. But it still hit me pretty hard, y'know? I spent a solid 50-100 pages kind of on and off weeping and laughing, because even though they're dying they're still so clever and funny and then they'd just say this one thing and it would spoil it all and I'd start tearing up again, and it's just so good. John Green's books are rarely full of surprises, but they are full of life. He always creates intensely vibrant people, and in this case they just so happen to live in an intensely tragic world. But he writes so beautifully, like, he gets the teen voice across so well that regardless of how clever/pretentious the things they're saying are, they're always carried with a barrel of truth, like, hard, teenagery truth. (I know I'm saying like a lot... I told you, not good at feelings!) And you just kind of sit there, reading these things, nodding along and wondering why you never thought things like that before, because they are so freaking true. I kind of want to go back and just underline all of the quotes I really liked, but I don't like writing in books.
I know I'm kind of waxing lyrical about it, and it may seem like I'm a John Green fangirl, and that I have nothing bad to say about it, but I kind of don't. It wasn't perfect or anything. There isn't a book out there that is perfect. But it is damn good. I think the worst thing I can say it about right now with my TFiOS fogged mind is that it made me feel things. I'm a pretty sensitive person, and I cry at books and films a lot, but I really hate doing it. I hate having feelings. Always have, yet I can't help having them. *glares at stupid tear ducts and hormones* But this is one of those books that I like, properly sobbed at. That's only happened 3 times. (Delirium, If I Stay, TFiOS, in case you were wondering.) So kudos, John Green. You did, indeed, succeed in making me feel ALL the things.
So. Yeah. The Fault in Our Stars. It's pretty good.