Opening line: Late in the winter of my seventeenth year, my mother decided I was depressed, presumably because I rarely left the house, spent quite a lot of time in bed, read the same book over and over, ate infrequently, and devoted quite a bit of my abundant free time to thinking about death.
I am quite a fan of Young Adult novels and have been wanting to read The Fault in our Stars by John Green for a long time. I didn’t know very much about it except that a lot of people raved about it, and now that I’ve read it I can understand why.
Hazel has cancer and knows her situation is terminal, and she meets Augustus at a support group for young cancer patients. There begins their relationship and the start of this wonderful story. I don’t want to delve too much more into the story than that, as I want you all to read it and discover it for yourselves.
John Green has done a fantastic job of not succumbing to cliches and writing honest and compelling characters. There are unfortunately lots of writers who would, if writing about teens in this kind of cancer situation, lay on the self pity, lay on the whining about parents who don’t understand, etc. John Green has balanced the teen angst, the sadness of the subject, and the reality of the characters so well that I have no complaints at all. For lack of a better word, the characters in this novel are very cool. They are the kind of people I would love to hang around. Even the adults have a fantastic mix of compassion, sadness and personal quirks. The teens are smart and make clever jokes and are filled with love. I want to be their friends! I laughed along with them and then cried like crazy during their sad moments. I was absolutely caught up in their world.
As all I can do is heap praise upon this novel I shall end this review with a moment I loved. I actually had a few I was going to share but realised when I sat down to write this that the rest were spoilers, so I’ll stick to just one.
“I’m in love with you, and I’m not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I’m in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we’re all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we’ll ever have, and I am in love with you.” [As if I didn't already love Augustus before he spoke these words to Hazel. I would melt!]
The Fault in our Stars by John Green – 5 out of 5 stars.