Title: The Fault in Our Stars
Author: John Green
Genre: Young Adult Fiction; Romance
The Fault in Our Stars is the story of a teenage girl Hazel Grace who is suffering from terminal cancer. Only child to her parents, Hazel is bought a few extra years of life through a “tumour-shrinking medical miracle” of a medicine. But it doesn’t make her life – or whatever is left of it – any easier. On her mother’s insistence Hazel attends a cancer support group for kids, where she meets Augustus Waters. Augustus is at the meeting to support his friend Isaac, who is also suffering from cancer. The two meet and fall in love, “the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once.” The story is how Augustus completely turns around Hazel’s expiry-dated life into one filled with hope and love.
This is the first of John Green’s books I have read and I must say, his writing style is exceptional. The way he portrays the lives of terminally-ill children, yet manages to keep the atmosphere light and even humourous is commendable. The characters of Hazel and Augustus, even Isaac, have been outlined so beautifully that the one reading almost feels a sense of acquaintance with them.
The character of Hazel in particular interested me so much, that I did some reading on how Green went about defining the character. Hazel is actually based on a real person, Esther Earl, who battled with thyroid cancer before her eventual death at age 16. She met Green at a Harry Potter conference in 2009 and eventually inspired the character of Hazel Grace. “She redefined the process of dying young for me”, says Green of Esther.
If I were to summarize my thoughts on this book in minimum words, it would be this: Easily the most heartbreaking, yet the most engrossing book I’ve read in a long long time. Un-put-down-able, the phrase I last used years ago for the Harry Potter series, is apt.
I started reading this at 10pm one night and kept reading till 3am. The book just took me over, absorbed me, swallowed me whole for that entire time. When I finished reading it, I realized this was what I had been looking for. The inexplicable restlessness that I almost constantly experience was quelled for the brief while that I spent reading it.
And when it ended..
There could be no better way to review the book than what Goodreads writes: 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.
Categories I knocked off with this book, as part of the book reading challenge 2015:
- A book you can finish in a day
- A book that made you cry
Have you been keeping up with me on the challenge? Share your reviews with me. Suggest books for me to review. Would love to hear from you all.