09 April 2012

Book Review: The Fault in Our Stars

Book Details
Author: John Green
File Size: 526 KB
Publisher: DUTTON CHILDREN'S (January 10, 2012)

Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 12, 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.

Rating: 5/5

"Men, at some time, are masters of their fates. The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings."
Julius Caesar
Act I, Scene II.

I hate books about death and dying – and I always prefer those novels that makes me feel good and would make me stay in the clouds for quite some time. Now, what made me grab this cancer book (base on the book description)? First, I haven’t read anything written by John Green (Yes, poor me). Second, the title sounds good. And lastly, The Fault in our Stars has 4.63 stars on Goodreads.

What I so love about The Fault in our Stars:

Hazel Grace Lancaster. She’s a 16 year old who adores reading, watching weird TV series, her mom and dad and lastly, Augustus. She was diagnosed with thyroid cancer which metastasized to her lungs that made an oxygen tank a necessity to her existence. She regularly attends a cancer support group that meets in the heart of Jesus (literally). Then she meets Augustus (I love the name, and I loved the owner even more).

Augustus Waters. He’s sweet, optimistic, intelligent, amazing, 16-year old boy who had lost his one leg due to cancer. He’s a smooth character and I find him really cool in dealing with both the disease and dying. He has a big heart filled with love for everyone especially for Hazel Grace.

Plot. Cancer Book? I stand corrected. Although Cancer plays a very important role in the story, I think that The Fault in Our Stars simply talks about a near-real story about two teen-agers who are both suffering from a dreaded disease when they found each other. Taking each day at a time and sharing all the love that they could for each other.

Together, the two main characters had the most fantastic combination of wit and humor, coupled with literary conversations which I think is just so deep (I’m thanking the dictionary installed in my kindle for a very big help). The love story isn’t cheesy nor uber romantic. Instead it was sweet and heartwarming. Couldn’t help to sigh – and wished that the ending would not result in death of any of them.

It made me laugh at first, then it made me cry.

In addition, I’ so glad John Green made his research and did it well. Being in the medical field, I could not find a single loophole (or if ever it has one, I have overlooked it because the novel is quite fetching).

Not to mention the dialogues – geez, this will probably be the longest review I ever had because of too many mushy-sweet-super-nice words John Green wrote on this book.

The Ending. Nicholas Sparks moved to the second spot once I got to the last few pages of John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars. My heart ached so badly, and I couldn’t help a few tears to escape my eyes.

I would gladly recommend this to my friends and urge them to make The Fault in Our Stars their next read.

Favorite Quotes
The world is not a wish-giving factory.

“I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, then all at once.”

“That's the thing about pain...it demands to be felt.” 

“What a slut time is. She screws everybody.” 

“You don't get to choose if you get hurt in this world...but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices.”

“Grief does not change you, Hazel. It reveals you.” 

“Without pain, how could we know joy?' This is an old argument in the field of thinking about suffering and its stupidity and lack of sophistication could be plumbed for centuries but suffice it to say that the existence of broccoli does not, in any way, affect the taste of chocolate.”

“It would be a privilege to have my heart broken by you.” 

“I told Augustus the broad outline of my miracle: diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer when I was thirteen. (I didn’t tell him that the diagnosis came three months after I got my first period. Like: Congratulations! You’re a woman. Now die.)”

“Some tourists think Amsterdam is a city of sin, but in truth it is a city of freedom. And in freedom, most people find sin.” 

“Whenever you read a cancer booklet or website or whatever, they always list depression among the side effects of cancer. But, in fact, depression is not a side effect of cancer. Depression is a side effect of dying.” 

“I'm a grenade and at some point I'm going to blow up and I would like to minimize the casualties, okay?” 

“You realize that trying to keep your distance from me will not lessen my affection for you. All efforts to save me from you will fail.” 

“It occurred to me that the voracious ambition of humans is never sated by dreams coming true, because there is always the thought that everything might be done better and again.” 

“But I believe in true love, you know? I don't believe that everybody gets to keep their eyes or not get sick or whatever, but everybody should have true love, and it should last at least as long as your life does.” 

“Our fearlessness shall be our secret weapon.” 

“You do not immortalize the lost by writing about them. Language buries, but does not resurrect.” 

“Sometimes people don't understand the promises they're making when they make them.” 

“I will not tell you our love story, because-like all real love stories-it will die with us,as it should.” 

“I’ll give you my strength if I can have your remission.”

“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.”

“you say you don’t want pity, but your very existence depends upon it.”

Even cancer isn't a bad guy really: Cancer just wants to be alive.

You gave me a forever within the numbered days, and I’m grateful.

*Photos from Tumblr

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I felt so sad at the end, but inside of me I had some kind of happiness because I realize I just read the most motivational and exciting book on my short life (and it made me give more value to my life).

    Congratulations for the review.