About the book
The Fault in Our Stars is a stand-alone young adult novel by John Green. It was published by Penguin on 3rd January and the book is 336 pages long.
At age thirteen, Hazel was diagnosed with Stage 4 thyroid cancer with the expectation of only living until she was 14. However, due to a medical miracle and experimental drugs, the tumours in her lungs shrunk even if it isn’t permanent. Two years later and Hazel is still living, forced by her parents to attend a support group for kids with cancer. Even though she hates the meetings, this is where she meets Augustus Waters. Hazel believes she will always be sick and miserable but Augustus brings fun and joy back into Hazel’s life, even love too. Their relationship makes Hazel re-evaluate her life and how being sick defines her and those around her.
What I thought
I had been putting this book off for a while due to knowing the nature of the plot. I have to be in the mood for something like this but once I started reading, I couldn’t put it down.
Protagonist of the story, Hazel, is a teenager with cancer. This is always going to be a tough subject to read about but John Green writes it so damn well. Hazel is far from the down and miserable character you would expect her to be. Instead, she is really witty and extremely intelligent. Even though she has cancer, she attends college classes a couple of days a week. Although she is really down (naturally) about the state of her life, she never comes across as depressing. I loved Hazel’s natural wit, her ability to say exactly what she is feeling or thinking and I loved the humour in her voice.
When Augustus comes into Hazel’s life, everything changes for them both. He too has survived some pretty horrible things for a guy so young but he doesn’t let it stop him. From the very beginning, Gus was extremely funny and a loveable and likeable character. He forces Hazel to re-evaluate everything she thinks she knows about life and cancer and really, gives her a real second chance. The pair together are wonderful to read about as the banter between them was fantastic.
The Fault in Our Stars is not exactly a book about a cancer. While characters in the book do have cancer, it is more a coming of age story. We see both Hazel and Augustus develop so much through their relationship and each of them become better and stronger people. What I wasn’t expecting from this book was the sense of adventure and the need to do something so badly. I really enjoyed watching Hazel and Augustus jet off in order to find the answers they thought they needed and this also gave them a chance to spend some real time together and have some fun.
This is strange book to be able to talk about in regards to emotions. While I was expecting to cry, which I did, I did not expect to laugh out loud so much. John Green throws in some fantastic humour, and sometimes right in the middle of a situation which shouldn’t be funny at all. At times when I thought I should be feeling really sad about what was happening I found myself giggling and laughing quite a lot. Green has a way of taking a really bad situation and making it light-hearted while still showing the importance of what is going on. This book is a whole rollercoaster of emotions but I wouldn’t have had it any other way. I absolutely adored what this book made me feel and it really opened my eyes about certain things.
Although this has been my first John Green book, I am drying to read his others now. Completely loved this!