Monday, April 15, 2013

Review: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Published: January 10th, 2012 (Dutton Books)
Pages: 368
Rating: 5/5
Goodreads ~ Amazon

Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 13, 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.

“…it occurred to me that the voracious ambition of humans if never sated by dreams coming true, because there is always the thought that everything might be done better and again.”
This is probably one of the most profound things I read in TFIOS. And trust me- there are a lot of profound statements in this book. It makes you think. I love books like that. I also sometimes like books that don’t end happily ever after, though the ending might be perfect in itself. This is one of those books.
There is so much symbolism, too, that’s included. John Green is no doubt a fan of symbols (much like Augustus Waters). Though many might not be evident on the first read, if you get a hold of the exclusive collector’s edition, the reader’s guide in the back helps to highlight a great deal of the symbols featured. It’s no wonder it took Green a whole stinking decade to write this book. Everything is a symbol (that’s an exaggeration, obviously, because look who’s talking here, but you get my point). Truly, Green is a genius to have scattered so much symbolism throughout a single volume.
There is no doubt you should read TFIOS. You should read it. Nothing I say would probably convince you either way, since there’s already like thirty thousand reviews on Goodreads (no joke), not to mention the book’s won a handful or two of various awards. So I guess the main purpose of this review is to tell you if I, personally, like the book. It’s not a particularly entertaining read. Green’s hilarious, sarcastic voice shines through this book as it does his vlogs, but still. It’s a book about a girl with cancer. It’s a book about death. It’s a book about falling in love. There is no happy ending. It’s blunt and thought-provoking and deep. But I could and will read it again and again and again.
 Quick Content Review: *may contain spoilers*
Language: Mild- Moderate
Violence: Mild (incidents involving cancer patients/death)
Sexual: Moderate (some kissing, one sex scene; very little description)

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