Book Review: The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

RELEASE DATE. January 10, 2012
PUBLISHER. Dutton Books
PAGES. 318
FORMAT. Hardcover
AGE GROUP. Young Adult
GENRE/S. Contemporary Romance

SYNOPSIS. Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.

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.

THOUGHTS. John Green has already established himself in the world of literature. He made us cry the first time in Looking For Alaska. He followed it up with Abundance of Katherines and Paper Towns. We fell in love and forever will fall in love with all of his characters. In his most recent book, The Fault In Our Stars is a reminiscent of the brilliance of each of his previous works. But for the most part, The Fault In Our Stars fairly reminds me of Looking For Alaska

Losing someone has an immeasurable emotional weight and the weight of it depends on the situation, on our relationship with them, and on how we can cope with it. Looking For Alaska and The Fault In Our Stars both addresses the matter of death and how it impacts life and the people in between. In Looking For Alaska, Green brought us into the life of Miles Halter and how a sudden devastating loss affected him and how he endured the loss. In the part of the reader, it was truly a devastating and emotionally intense book. A different weight of emotions was bore in The Fault In Our Stars. Unlike Miles Halter, Hazel Grace Lancaster was given the opportunity of time to fall in love and prepare for the inevitable. The inevitability of death was ever-present in the story that readers were being given the idea and were being prepared for what’s bound to happen. When it came, the impact of death was less affecting and it’s not enough to be powerfully depressing unlike Looking For Alaska. But that is something to be considered in this kind of book. Actually, it was very surprising that it was not at all seriously depressing—or even excessively happy. With a theme that is quite sensitive, The Fault In Our Stars might be taken as a heavy drama which obviously (and thankfully) is not. Green manages to balance his writing knowledge without sacrificing his familiar offbeat voice to create a soundproof genuine story that will not only resonate to readers who can relate with the story but to every individual as well who wish to encounter the story.

It is impossible—hardly impossible—for a John Green book to be called a John Green book without its characters. The characters who brought us the tears and joy and hate and love (and a film adaptation). Who would ever forget Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters? Not me and not in a million years. Hazel reminds me of Miles Halter. While Miles had an obsession with famous last words, Hazel had been curious on what befall on the characters on her favorite book. She has the same sarcastic wit and thought-provoking articulation of Miles. Her voice is flawlessly believable to the extent that you almost won’t believe that a man wrote the book. Despite the fragility inside of her, she remains real to herself and everybody. If she’s weak, she’s weak. If she’s strong, she’s strong. Hazel is a living, breathing person who knows when to let go. Sometimes, I find Hazel to be too smart for her age but I love smart people and I love being surrounded by them. Besides, Green loves to write about smart people and in return makes his readers feel smart too.

It’s a different story for Augustus Waters. Augustus’s brightness is comparable with Alaska Young’s. While Alaska couldn’t live without cigarettes, Augustus had a metaphorical way of using cigarettes. Augustus is a rather complicated character but in an exceedingly good way. His character actually defies description. Let’s put it this way, when Augustus starts talking, you simply don’t want him to stop and you could listen to him all day. Although this is Hazel's narration, his character shines luminously throughout the pages.

Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters are two inevitable, endearing and extraordinary fictional figures. Theirs is not a tragic story but a genuinely beautiful heartbreaking story. Sometimes it’s hard not to think that their story is true because you know they are a result of a creative mind like John Green but then again, your mind insists it’s real and your mind insists to believe. Good thing they aren't because it gives me the reason to go back for more. Although I was truly hoping that Hazel and Isaac would end up together and although Green ended the book like An Imperial Affliction, I will always go back for Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters because that's how I dearly love them.

The Fault In Our Stars is one of the most important stories of this generation. Even before the film adaptation, it already felt cinematic on its own white pages and black ink. I couldn't be happier and more privilege than to be part of that generation. Perhaps, without The Fault In Our Stars, it would be an incomplete generation because The Fault In Our Stars, along with other important books, started a revolution and a burning desire to read. It is only right to send our heartfelt gratitude to every author who continues to expand realms into infinities, who continues to make us believe in the impossible, and who keeps molding us into better persons.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR. John Green is an award-winning, New York Times-bestselling author whose many accolades include the Printz Medal, a Printz Honor, and the Edgar Award. He has twice been a finalist for the LA Times Book Prize. With his brother, Hank, John is one-half of the Vlog brothers, one of the most popular online video projects in the world. John lives with his family in Indianapolis, Indiana.

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