Monday, July 22, 2013

Review: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green

Title: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS
Author: John Green
Published: January 10th, 2012
Genre: YA Contemporary
Pages: 368
POV: 1st person
Publisher: Dutton
Format: Hardcover
Source: Borrowed (library); purchased collector's edition.
Rating: 5 out of 5
"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."

I didn't think I would enjoy THE FAULT IN OUR STARS. In my mind, the reviews were so positive that there was no way it could possibly live up to all of that praise. I mean, come on. It seemed as if the entire universe loved this book! I enjoyed one of Green's earlier novels a few years back, but I was not overly impressed by Green's writing style in that story. So forgive me, but I was skeptical and went into this story expecting to be underwhelmed by the characters and the plot. But, I quickly realized that THE FAULT IN OUR STARS lives up to (and deserves) the hype once I began reading. And, upon finishing the last page and the last lines, I promptly burst into tears, solidifying this book as one of my favorite novels1

I'm amazed at how developed and realistic all of the characters were throughout the story. From Hazel, our straight-forward and slightly snarky narrator, to the exuberantly amusing Augustus Waters, all of the characters are developed with their own quirks and traits. While there are mentions of cancer and death, this is more of a story about two teens who fall into like (and eventually, love) with each other, and it's both utterly sweet and sad. Anyone who is putting off reading this book, for whatever reason you have, give it a chance. Buy it, borrow it, or read it while sitting on the floor of your local bookstore, but do not let this story pass you by without at least checking it out once. Hilarious, heartbreaking, and entirely deserving of every single glowing, positive review it receives, THE FAULT IN OUR STARS is one exceptional story. 

Highlights: Hazel and Augustus are a couple of smart cookies who happen to have cancer, but they're also your typical teenagers. They make mistakes, they think they know everything, they obsess over awesome books, and they are utterly endearing. Green takes his time developing characters – for better or for worse – and I like how not everyone in this story has a perfect personality. An honest portrayal of family, friends,  and young love.  This story is excellent.

Lowlights: Not long enough? And the ending2. *sighs* *hugs book*

1 I don't cry that often, so when a book makes me shed a tear (or multiple tears), I take notice. 
2 Thanks for completely BREAKING my heart and shattering my hopes, John Green. *grabs tissues*



26 comments:

  1. I read this book one week ago and... I fall totally in love with Jone Green. I cried, I laugh and I cried again. This is the kind of book that you can't forget nor stop talking about.

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    1. Wasn't it fantastic? I agree, it's absolutely memorable and definitely the type of book you could talk about over and over :)

      So happy you loved TFIOS, too!

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  2. RIGHT?! Yes, Lea. You captured my emotions so perfectly! I thought there was no way I could love this book as much as everyone else, but holy hell. Green captured pure human emotion and just carved out a piece of my soul. Sigh. I need to re-read it now. Wonderful review, and I'm so glad you loved it!

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    1. "Green captured pure human emotion and just carved out a piece of my soul." -- oh, yes! I love how you said that.

      TFIOS = Outstanding. I feel kind of silly for waiting so long to read it! For once, the hype was right!

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  3. I *still* haven't read this one. Why? Because I know I'll be bawling my eyes out with this book -- besides the fact that John Green just has a way with words and has made me tear up with his other books, too, there are sick kids! Ones who are going to die! Guess I'll just have to gird my loins and do it, right?

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    1. Mary! You should definitely try to read it soon, TFIOS is incredible, funny, sad, and emotional. You'll love it!

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  4. I felt the same way about the book. It was so good and is on my "favorites" book shelf. John Green is such a talented author. I want to read more of his books. Fantastic review and I am so happy you liked it!

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    1. This one is on my "favorites" shelf, too. Such an amazing book! I almost want to start rereading it again...

      Glad you loved TFIOS, too! :)

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  5. Dad burn it! I need to read this book. Everyone and their mother loves it. I need to give it a look peek.

    Great review.

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    1. You MUST read TFIOS!! It really is incredible.

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  6. I'm really conflicted whether I should read this book. I don't usually read books with sad topics, like cancer, and I'm scared I'll get depressed or something by this book. Is it really that sad or am I exaggerating?

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    1. It does have sad moments, but it's also incredibly amusing and sweet. There's a nice balance between the happy and sad moments (although the ending is pretty sad, or maybe just bittersweet). You should try to check it out :)

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  7. This book definitely made me cry like a baby. I'm not going to pretend it is one of my favorite books, but I did like it and was certainly a bit broken by the end. This was the first book I've read by John Green, but I do plan on reading more of his books. Great review!

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    1. Oh gosh, this book hit me hard by the end. I managed to keep my emotions in check, until the last page...glad you enjoyed this story, too! :)

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  8. Aw, I'm SO HAPPY that you loved this book too. <3 It's just SO PERFECT. Sobs. But damn it. You should have read it sooner :D Shame on you for thinking you wouldn't enjoy it ;p But yeah. It is just so heartbreaking :( but perfect too. <3 thank you for sharing your awesome review :)

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    1. I absolutely should have read it sooner...but, I was obviously being an idiot ;)

      So heartbreaking! But really a fantastic story. Glad you loved it too :)

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  9. I still have yet to read this. I've had it on my shelf since it released, but haven't gotten around to it. I've heard great things about this :) Great review!

    Janina @ Synchronized Reading

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    1. TFIOS is an amazing story! You should try to read it sometime soon :)

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  10. I adored this one too even when like you, I was skeptical about the hype.

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    1. Books with a lot of hype tend to be a hit or a miss with me, so I'm relieved that I loved this story. Glad you enjoyed TFIOS, too! :)

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  11. I was actually just talking to my sister about this book today, specifically about how she couldn't believe I hadn't read it yet. I think I haven't because of all the great praise (as you said, could it possibly live up?!). Plus I don't think I'm prepared for what I fully know will be a sad ending. However, your review is making me think I should give in already and read it. Also, I'm the same way with crying during books. Doesn't happen a lot, but when it does, I really do know it is a great book. :)

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    1. This book had a lot to live up to, and it doesn't disappoint! It's an emotional read, but it has a lot of lighter moments too. Hope you love the story, if you get around to reading TFIOS :)

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  12. Okay, I STILL haven't read this, but it's because I still haven't read any of John's books and I've decided that I want to read them in order published, so starting with Looking for Alaska. Hopefully I will have tried out his writing at least once before the year is out! Because it makes me a bit sad to think that I'm missing out on such a talent (even if you weren't completely wow'd by the one earlier novel you read of his). I'll have to prepare mentally for this though - I have a feeling it might destroy me. Wonderful review!

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    1. Ooh, that's a smart idea! It's always interesting to see how an author's writing changes over multiple books, too. Hope you like his books! Especially TFIOS :)



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  13. I can't wait to read this one, although somehow I keep putting it off because of other books. Your review definitely made me want to get to it soon!

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    1. You should try it soon, TFIOS is such a great story!

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