The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.
Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning author John Green's most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.
I have an extraordinarily difficult time giving John Green five stars because even though I find his books to be sheer brilliance, I also could not sit down and read them over and over again. They are, ultimately, depressing. As strange as it sounds, they are depressing in a good way, because they make you think about things that you don’t want to think about. In this case, I find themes to be the cruelty of fate, living life to the fullest, courage, and knowing oneself.
There are a million things that one can take out of a John Green book. To a point, I am not certain John Green intends for a lesson to be learned in his novels – the way he reads to me, he writes about topics that infuriates him, and he wants to make the world aware of these things. To describe John Green in a word, judging by any and all of his books, I would call him “passionate”. It seems that the world agrees with the genius behind his latest book, judging by a recent article in Time Magazine. To put it plainly – I may be saying I think that John Green is a genius… but obviously this isn’t something that you (the reader) and the rest of the world don’t already know.
It is important to remember, when reading a John Green novel, that although it was likely discovered on a YA bookshelf, it is still very applicable to adults. In fact, the YA only means that the protagonist is between the ages of twelve and eighteen. His books are very accessible for adults, while remaining interesting to young adults. In fact, I daresay as an adult I get more out of the books than some of my students may, being unable to fully grasp some of the greater challenges of life when still tucked into a nest egg and not having responsibilities greater than a curfew. It is difficult to talk about this book without giving away spoilers. You cannot love any of the characters – they are far too flawed, even if you can pity them. But they are the perfect representations of reality – John Green does not sugarcoat his characters. Not this time.
To any fan of John Green’s – The Fault in Our Stars will blow you away. And if you aren’t a fan… this book may be a good place to start. If you are a weepy person, make sure to have some tissues nearby.