Unless you’ve been living under a rock as of late, you will know that John Green’s newest book has been received very well. New York Times has labelled it a #1 best seller, teenagers can’t stop reading it and the reviews just keep on coming! Obviously I joined on the band wagon and decided to devote my weekend to reading it.
John Green’s newest book is called ‘The Fault in Our Stars,’ it is about a girl who overcomes her struggles with cancer. Honestly speaking the plot is very basic. It’s about a girl who has cancer and her parents force her to go to a support group and not be a ‘homebody,’ there she meets a boy …and well you get the gist.
The title is very intriguing and since I’m currently drowning in William Shakespeare it is appropriate that I mention the title is inspired by a Shakespearian play called Julius Caesar the line it’s inspired by is: ‘The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves, that we are underlings.’
Despite the simplicity of the plot, the book is still special. The story is told with wit and humor even with tragedy looming in the future. It doesn’t paint a false image, its true and realistic of the topic it discusses. It is narrated by a 16 year old who suffers from cancer, and that’s what it feels like when your reading it, there is a lot of “likes,” in this book. There isn’t an airy-fairy pick up and drop off of cancer in the book, cancer is as much apart of Hazel Grace’s story as Augustus Waters is. The story really deals with raw emotions and desires and so despite being simplistic in its plot it deals with complexities too; because you’re not only trying to understand a frustrated teenage girl struggling, but a cancer patient too.
This story doesn’t glorify the battle of cancer patients it attempts to explain the fears and dreams of an individual who unfortunately has to live with cancer. Often people with cancer are presented as warriors and despite this being true, many can argue that by seeing them this way we differentiate them from us – this story deals with that concept. It’s a story that isn’t about fighting cancer, it’s about living with this illness and then constantly having to be aware of the effects it will have on those around you. Hazel Grace doesn’t want to be a ‘grenade,’ she’s not worried about dying but she’s worried about life for her parents when she isn’t there, about what she will leave behind.
Through the course of the book, the characters unravel into real people who have real dreams and obsessions. The reason I got so attached to this book was because of the characters, they just stayed true to themselves, as fictional as they were!
Why I read this book: Initially I’ve been very eager to read one of John Green’s other books but since this was his most current one, I decided to read this first.
Why I liked this book: The book really made me appreciate simplicity, because I think we all go about our days not acknowledging the things we take for granted, like our health, our friends and family or even the books we read.
Other comments: I don’t want to give away the entire plot of the book in my review so I’m keeping it short but it is a very good book to read and I strongly recommend it. I wouldn’t be discouraged by the simplistic plot line, because despite that I believe this book has a lot of knowledge to offer, and I will definitely be reading it again one day. I’d prepare yourself, I did have a little sobbing session at the end!
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green