The Fault in Our Stars By John Green (spoiler free review)

Happy Tuesday!

Announcements

I apologize for the late post, I had a midterm paper due yesterday and I was sweating all weekend and yesterday morning finishing it. Also, lectures started again yesterday after spring holiday and uggh it’s a mess over here. I’m ready for summer.

There are some changes coming down the tubes, I’m not quite at liberty to talk about them yet but it’s all good news.  However I am EXCITED to announce that I have a new writer coming on board to write poetry, short stories, and more on Tuesdays.

If you want to submit pieces of poetry, short fiction, fan art, or if you’re a band who wants to do a press release for your new music video or album, or a young author looking for a new reader, or whatever feel free to get in touch with me. Here’s a link to my contact page.

I’ll tell you more when I have more details worked out.

End announcements

Spoiler Free Summary and Review:

The Fault in Our Stars is a book by the wonderful John Green, well known for the YouTube series Crash Course (Crash Course Literature being one of my favourtes, tied with Crash Course Philosophy with his equally wonderful brother Hank Green).  If you’re as late to the party as I am on this one, published in 2012 and movie adaptation released in 2014, you are in luck, my friend, because this is probably the best romance story you’ve missed. (1)  The Fault in Our Stars.jpg

The Fault in Our Stars is a Shakespearean style love story, as the title implies. “The fault in our stars” is a quote from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, between Hazel Grace, a 16 year old girl with cancer that has spread to her lungs, and Augustus, a boy she meets in a support group,

After some awkward teenage conversation, Hazel and Augustus exchange favourite books to read. They bond over the cliff hanger end to Hazel’s beloved book The Price of Dawn.  Augustus gets in touch with the author of Hazel’s favourite book and puts the two in touch (for those taking notes, this is an EXCELLENT move; get me a personal meeting with Mark Z. Danielewski and I think that might be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.)

The story goes on develop the arc of young love, but what sets it apart from other teenage love is that going into this story we have a game of Russian Roulette being played with Chekhov’s Revolver. The three main characters, Hazel, Augustus, and their mutual-friend Isaac, have advanced stages of cancer. The whole time I was, sometimes literally, in tears with anticipation of seeing who was going to die, and wishing the whole time that somehow no one would and that they could all go into remission and live long, wonderful lives together.  However, as per the rules of great fiction: characters have to get hurt.  In this case for me, the pain was worth the pay off.

 

Footnotes:

  1. If you’re into that kind of thing, romance stories that is.  See me? I may have a cold black heart but I’m a sappy sod for a good love story.  Speaking of I’m a HUGE pumping-blood-bleeding-heart for a good real life love story,  so if you have a good story about how you met your lovely partner or former partner and want to share, send me a message.

 

**SPOILERS BELOW**

 

Genres: Love, Young Adult, Tragedy

Favourite Quotes/Scenes:

  1.  This first sentence is such wonderfully teenage angst but the stakes are so much higher given her diagnosis.

    “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.”

  2. I love the scene where Hazel and Augustus are on the phone talking about their last wishes and how Hazel could afford a trip to go meet the author of her favourite book:

    …”I used my Wish pre-Miracle.”
    “What’d you do?”
    I sighed loudly.  “I was thirteen,” I said.
    “Not Disney,” he said.
    I said nothing.
    “You did not go to Disney World.”
    I said nothing.
    “Hazel GRACE!” he shouted. “You did not use your one dying wish to go to Disney World with your parents.”
    “Also Epcot Center,” I mumbled.
    -Page 80

  3. This scene, even rereading, still pulls on my heart:

    We sat out there in silence for a minute and then Gus said, “I wish we had that swing set sometimes.”
    “The one from my backyard?”
    “Yeah. My nostalgia is so extreme that I am capable of missing a swing my butt never actually touched.”
    “Nostalgia is a side effect of dying,” I told him.
    “Nah, Nostalgia is the side effect of dying,” he answered.
    Above us, the wind blew and the branching shadows rearranged themselves on our skin.  Gus squeezed my hand.
    “It’s a good life, Hazel Grace.”

Conclusion:

I’m really looking forward to getting around to John Green’s other books.  He has an extremely accessible writing style and grasp on story telling conventions that lends it self to extremely easy afternoon reading with out feeling like it lacks rereading value.  I have yet to see the movie, I’ve heard almost nothing but good things.  One more interesting thing I found was a Hank Green Vlogbrothers video called ” * * * * Review: The TFiOS Bench – Amsterdam” which taught me that there is a bench in Amsterdam where they filmed a scene for the movie that has become an attraction to the point where it is recognized on google maps as an attraction.  I may visit it sometime after seeing the movie and if I do, there will be pictures.

 

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One thought on “The Fault in Our Stars By John Green (spoiler free review)

  1. Pingback: On the Road by Jack Kerouac (Spoiler Free) | offbeat, on point

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