The Fault in Our Stars

The Fault in Our Stars

There is an alternate cover edition here."I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, then all at once."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, Haz...

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Title:The Fault in Our Stars
Author:John Green
Rating:
ISBN:0525478817
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:313 pages

The Fault in Our Stars Reviews

  • Tatiana
    Jun 28, 2011

    As seen on

    currently has a rating of 4.74 on Goodreads, almost everyone I know has given it 5 stars, therefore I'm certain no one would want to read my sour musings, except me and maybe a couple of other like-minded and unimpressed.

    What I'd love to know is this - what makes a writer undertake the topic of cancer? So much has already been written about it, so many

    movies filmed, so many tears shed. It literally has been done to death. What new did

    As seen on

    currently has a rating of 4.74 on Goodreads, almost everyone I know has given it 5 stars, therefore I'm certain no one would want to read my sour musings, except me and maybe a couple of other like-minded and unimpressed.

    What I'd love to know is this - what makes a writer undertake the topic of cancer? So much has already been written about it, so many

    movies filmed, so many tears shed. It literally has been done to death. What new did

    have to bring to the cancer table?

    The way I see it, nothing. Having your terminally sick characters be ironic about their illnesses and swap cancer jokes isn't groundbreaking.

    isn't a bad book, but it's a standard cancer book, and, sadly, a standard

    book, with standard

    humor and standard

    characters speaking in the very same

    voice.

    You have a witty and intelligent protagonist (this time 2, Hazel and Augustus - a female and male versions of Miles/Quentin/Colin), a funny, slightly pathetic sidekick (Isaac - another version of Hassan/Chip/Marcus), a mysterious, unhinged girl, Gus's dead ex (Alaska/Margo clone), and, of course, the signature ROAD TRIP. I can't help but recognize these people and this plot, I've read all of Green's novels.

    I understand why so many readers would have such an emotional response to the book. Nothing will get the ladies crying quicker than a kid dying of cancer. Add in some long farewells, painkillers, eulogies and funerals - you can collect buckets of tears. But, IMO, here Green aims for the most obvious, the most easily accessible emotions, for the most typical "life lessons." And for all Green's attempts to be subversive and to make fun of "cancer cliches" - inspirational quotes, heroic cancer survivors, etc. he ended up writing about exactly the same things.

    Frankly, I think

    is Green's weakest work to date, weaker even than half-baked

    . Because this, unlike his earlier works, feels commercial and intentionally tearjerky and insincere. It will probably sell the most copies.

  • April*procrastinator and proud*
    Jun 30, 2011

    This is me after I finished the book (and whenever I think about it).

    *pointless EDIT* Woooah! 1000+ likes!? I'm surprised how many people are willing to read my little blurb of nothingness!

    *EDIT* In a lot of peoples reviews I keep seeing "they don't talk their age!" or "They make these beautiful long speeches which is something that normal teenagers don't do" and I have to point out that Augustus and Hazel AREN'T normal teenagers. They've had to go through so much more in their lifetime than a

    This is me after I finished the book (and whenever I think about it).

    *pointless EDIT* Woooah! 1000+ likes!? I'm surprised how many people are willing to read my little blurb of nothingness!

    *EDIT* In a lot of peoples reviews I keep seeing "they don't talk their age!" or "They make these beautiful long speeches which is something that normal teenagers don't do" and I have to point out that Augustus and Hazel AREN'T normal teenagers. They've had to go through so much more in their lifetime than a lot of teenagers will ever have to, and its aged them. And quite honestly, this book wouldn't be as good if they were "normal" (whatever that means)

    *sighs* okay I'm done, proceed with reading. If you want to, I'm just tiny words on a screen. Do whatever you want.

    As much of an amazing writer as I want to be.... I'm really not. So I'll just point out the things that made this book amazing. ;)

    I knew that I would cry so I really didn't bother swearing not to cry. What I didn't expect is bawling my eyes out. I really didn't. John Green has done an amazing job of making these characters feel so real to me. When they cried, I cried (bawled). When they laughed, I laughed. When they melted, I melted. Their romance was so epic and I know, I KNOW, that this is a book I will read over and over again and cry every single time.

    The characters were perfection! Especially Augustus Waters. Not only is his name Augustus (which is epic in itself) He had the guts to go up to Hazel and just straight up ask her to come hang out with him. Nice guys finish last? I think not.

    You know this book was so awesmazing that I gave it its own tag. Just look up there and you'll see a little tag that says "the-fault-in-our-stars". It was THAT amazing. Seriously. So amazing that I'm pretty sure it was my first heartbreak... from a book. I really haven't felt that much from a book, much less a person, in a very long time. (I'm kind of a loner and a commitment phob... not a good mix) But my heart didn't just do this 3, it did this » *BOOM!* (didn't have a sign for that)

    I wish I could write more about this book, but I just can't explain the amazingness of it with my simple, unworthy words, so I am going to tell you what you NEED to do....

  • Rhi
    Oct 23, 2011

    I must be clear from the beginning. This is perhaps the most personal review I have written. My choice of stars was difficult for this. I am a self confessed John Green fan, I believe he is amongst the best of, not only YA, but fiction writers out there in general.

    This is a beautifully written book. There is very little to complain about in terms of style, plot, character, etc. However I couldn't, in all good conscience, give this any higher because it sits so badly with me. I have let this nov

    I must be clear from the beginning. This is perhaps the most personal review I have written. My choice of stars was difficult for this. I am a self confessed John Green fan, I believe he is amongst the best of, not only YA, but fiction writers out there in general.

    This is a beautifully written book. There is very little to complain about in terms of style, plot, character, etc. However I couldn't, in all good conscience, give this any higher because it sits so badly with me. I have let this novel marinate for a couple of days now before writing this, and I just keep coming back to the same issues. Namely:

    It is the human condition to attempt to find hope in hopeless situations. But let me attempt to explain how watching a 17 year old fade away truly feels. Because when the wit and words are stripped away I am not sure John did that.

    It is endless. It is an unavoidable and uncontrollable and an all encompassing darkness where no hope or life or explanations exist.

    There are absolutely no life lessons to be gained from watching a 17 year old cease to exist. There is no comfort. The lessons that some may claim you can achieve through the darkest night of the soul reveal most of humanity for the selfish, narcissistic beings we are.

    I have come to believe there is a special kind of cruelty behind the perfectly cross stitched 'encouragement'. Those things are for the ones left over trying to make sense of the senseless.

    Whilst I believe this novel acknowledges that. It tries not to, as the main protagonists claimed theirselves, set the victims of disease up as typical heroic, worldly wise characters, it still reads like a novel attempting to bring equilibrium out of disaster. The victims ultimately still are wise beyond their years. This, it seems, is an assumed side effect of a teenager coming to terms with their mortality. They use metaphors and pretentious poetry and a sharp wit and are wholly unbelievable as real life teenagers. They are constructs of an ideal. They are the literary version of Dawson's Creek, using SAT vocabulary and existential navel gazing, whilst simultaneously slamming the typical genre for using its characters to do the same.

    Having lived this first hand; once with a brother who ceases to exist at 17 and a second time with a brother who is currently 2 years NEC. I am all too familiar with the need for light hearted humour at what may feel like the most inappropriate of times. But what differs from that and attempting to write a disease ridden novel that attempts to make you laugh, is apparently personal experience.

    I have the right to sit around a Christmas table laughing somewhat hysterically at nothing. My living brother has the right to crack UNO-ball jokes whenever the opportunity arises. But none of the readers of this novel who have not experienced the kind of loss depicted here have a right to laugh at any of it. You can not claim it as your own unless it is yours, and in my mind that is what humour does. It is not appropriate for me to laugh along with eye jokes and blind jokes, because they are not my jokes. I am merely a voyeur in another persons tragedy, I lay no claim to having the understanding of the experience necessary to allow for laughter.

    Again, let me make clear. I can not approach this book outside of my personal experience. Of course in reality I do not believe you have to have experienced everything to laugh at a joke. But in terms of purposefully trying to create humour in a novel that is fundamentally tragic, for an audience that is mostly YA, I struggle with. I struggle with it because the empty platitudes that are trying so hard to be subverted in this novel, are still being created. It is still suggesting there can be lightness and humour within the terminally dark - and it is suggesting it to people who have never experienced the terminally dark.

    This read like a novel where the author has truly witnessed the emptiness of teenage terminal illness, and thankfully appears to have become more considerate and thoughtful for it. As opposed to erring on the side of platitudes.

    But it still read as a novel attempting to explain where the hope in hopeless situations are.

    Perhaps because it is too raw a subject for me, or perhaps because the novel really is sentimental and gratuitous (granted in a different way from the norm of this genre) but this is not a book I would recommend.

    For sufferers, for family members of sufferers, or for well meaning people seeking to understand the hopelessness of some situations. I would recommend it for none.

  • Madeline
    Jan 18, 2012

    At age twenty-two, John Green worked as a student chaplain in a children's hospital.

    Let's take a moment and consider all the implications of that, and why he is making a colossal understatement when he described the experience as "devastating." That was about twelve years ago, and Green has said in interviews that because of this experience, he's spent twelve years trying to write a book about kids with cancer - not poster children of strength and courage and illness-granted wisdom, but real ki

    At age twenty-two, John Green worked as a student chaplain in a children's hospital.

    Let's take a moment and consider all the implications of that, and why he is making a colossal understatement when he described the experience as "devastating." That was about twelve years ago, and Green has said in interviews that because of this experience, he's spent twelve years trying to write a book about kids with cancer - not poster children of strength and courage and illness-granted wisdom, but real kids and their families and friends who have to cope with the fact that they will die young.

    All novels are personal, but Green's novels seem, to me, to be especially so. But this one is personal in a different way. With this novel, Green isn't trying to exorcize the memory of

    who

    in

    . This goes deeper than high school romance and Manic Pixie Dream Girl angst. This is about life, death, illness, love, heroism, and how a sixteen-year-old is supposed to deal with the fact that she will die and leave everyone she loves behind. Maybe it's just because I've been watching vlogbrothers videos for four years and feel like I'm actually acquainted with John Green, but this is the most deeply personal novel I've ever read.

    This is not, as Hazel Lancaster might say, a Cancer Book. None of the cancer patients in this story have a wisdom beyond their years, and they do not stoically accept the fact that they will die or fight heroically. Hazel Lancaster, a terminal sixteen-year-old who has to carry an oxygen tank everywhere because "my lungs suck at being lungs" is refreshingly real - not manic, not a pixie, not a dream girl. She reads Great Books and watches

    marathons. Augustus Waters, her amputee friend, wants desperately to leave a lasting impression on the world and philosophizes about heroism, and his favorite book is a novelization of a video game. (can I say how much I love that an author can establish a character's intelligence without telling us that they love reading Austen

    ) Everything here is real, especially the diseases. There isn't any bullshit about dying gracefully here, because cancer is

    and unpleasant, and Green makes you feel Hazel's lungs struggling to breathe and the pain, and see the vomit and urine. (Remember how in

    , Mandy Moore has been secretly dying of leukemia the whole time but looks great even on her deathbed? Nicholas Sparks can fuck right off for that insult to real cancer patients) Most importantly, Hazel and Augustus are not defined by their cancer. It consumes their lives, but it doesn't define them. On every page, it's clear: this is a story told by someone who hasn't known just one person with cancer, but has seen a multitude of children with terminal diseases, and has tried to find some way to comfort them and their families.

    It's for that reason that I don't feel like I can review this like a normal book. John Green didn't write this story for me, and so I don't feel like I have any place saying that it's amazing and beautiful and heartbreaking. And I certainly can't criticize any of its minor faults. All I can say, really, is that you have to read this for yourself, and go from there.

    ...

    Okay, you guys know me better than that. I have one big complaint, which I will describe here, and all I ask is that you remember that I still gave this five stars.

    Augustus Waters, in the first few chapters, comes off as a pretentious douche. When Hazel first meets him at a cancer support group, they're talking afterwards and Augustus takes out a cigarette and puts it in his mouth. Hazel, who you'll recall is dying because her lungs cannot function, freaks out: "...even though you HAD FREAKING CANCER you give money to a company in exchange for the chance to acquire YET MORE CANCER." Augustus explains that he doesn't smoke the cigarettes, he just puts them in his mouth (no, really) because "They don't kill you unless you light them...And I've never lit one. It's a metaphor, see: you put the killing thing right between your teeth, but you don't give it the power to do its killing."

    Augustus, I love you, but you're full of shit right there. Notice how he didn't address Hazel's perfectly valid point that, by buying cigarettes, Augustus is giving money to the people who cause cancer? Because here's the thing: you can say to a cigarette company, "I'm buying your cigarettes as a metaphor, but I won't light them so I'm taking away their power" and they'll stop listening at "I'm buying your cigarettes" because that's all they care about. And it's a shit metaphor in any case: you can walk around a mall with a shotgun and explain to people that because it's unloaded you've taken away its power, but you're still going to get arrested.

    So that was annoying, as was Augustus's general air of overly-charming pretentious skeeziness in the beginning. But I forgive him for it, because lest we forget, he is seventeen. If his character was twenty-two he'd be the most obnoxious jackass on the planet, but because he's just a kid, I was willing to forgive him. Still hate the cigarette thing, though.

  • Sophia.
    Mar 06, 2012

    So a discussion occurred in my head after I rated the book.

    So a discussion occurred in my head after I rated the book.

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  • Erika
    Apr 15, 2012

    John Green.

    John Green.

    John Green.

    You're not like Peter Van Houten, are you?

    What have you done to my brain...

    and my heart...

    I'm not gonna review how exquisite John Green can write, or how he can create characters as special as Hazel Grace and Augustus Waters, or how amazing he can tell a story. Despite the huge number of ratings and the spectacular average rating, this book is not perfect. You might find it unrealistic, because if there are many of us who see the life and its complexity like Haze

    John Green.

    John Green.

    John Green.

    You're not like Peter Van Houten, are you?

    What have you done to my brain...

    and my heart...

    I'm not gonna review how exquisite John Green can write, or how he can create characters as special as Hazel Grace and Augustus Waters, or how amazing he can tell a story. Despite the huge number of ratings and the spectacular average rating, this book is not perfect. You might find it unrealistic, because if there are many of us who see the life and its complexity like Hazel and Gus do, this world will be such a happy place. So like any other book, this one also might be a miss or a hit. If it's a miss, then you can say it's not worth the hype. But if it's a hit, it hits hard.

    Everything in this book: the characters, the story, the words, they all have the power to be an inspiration. If you haven't read it, I suggest to take the chance.

  • Ayesha
    Aug 12, 2012

    Since I've been receiving a lot of cyber bullies and hate messages, I’m going to clarify few things.

    -Firstly, this is a negative review of the book and it has got a lot of potential to infuriate the fans. If you think that your opinion is the only opinion that exists on earth and that no one should dislike your favourite book, then I would suggest you to avoid this review.

    -Secondly,

    Since I've been receiving a lot of cyber bullies and hate messages, I’m going to clarify few things.

    -Firstly, this is a negative review of the book and it has got a lot of potential to infuriate the fans. If you think that your opinion is the only opinion that exists on earth and that no one should dislike your favourite book, then I would suggest you to avoid this review.

    -Secondly,

    I have the freedom to have my own thoughts and to express them in whatever way I want to and I don’t appreciate fans shoving their opinions down my throats, I’m not here to cater the needs of TFIOS fandom.

    -Thirdly,

    . Why can't you get it through your thick skulls that everyone has different opinions, they’re going to interpret books differently from you and stop being selfish to think that just because you loved a book that means the whole world should love it. This world is full of people with differing opinions, differing thoughts and differing likes and differing dislikes, learn to respect them even if you don’t agree with what they have to say about your favourite books. Just because you love a particular book that I hate doesn't make you a good person and me a bad person, It simply shows that people like different things.

    Every reader has the freedom to dissect and critically analyse any book and write their thoughts on it in their own review space without the fear of anyone (or fans bossing them into writing what the fandom wants). Critically analysing books and criticising problematic aspects of any reading material prevents people from being passive readers.

    Honestly, this book is nowhere as good as the works of those two geniuses. Stop thinking that criticising this book is sacrilegious.

    -Fourthly,

    Your hate messages and death threats will show much more of your personality than your love for this book. Remember, every time you comment any bullshit here, you’re giving your own fandom a bad name and my review more popularity. Also, your hate messages aren't going to put me down. I’m a strong girl and I’m always going to stand up for what I believe in come hell or high water. I don't fear anyone and no one can ever force me to follow their orders like a puppet especially not a fandom where

    of the fans are immature cyber bullies who can’t respect other’s opinions. Also, I've caught fans making fake accounts to troll my review, this shows me that they are big cowards who hide their faces and send me spiteful comments.

    -Lastly, I’m NOT shaming anyone for loving this book. You can love whatever you want to and believe in whomever you want to. I have no problem with people who genuinely love this book;

    Alright, now let's begin with the review.

    I’ve re-written this review because my previous one contained my angry rant and most of my points were incoherent.

    So I happily bought the hardcover of The Fault in our stars back in December 2012 after seeing the high average GR ratings and raving reviews saying how beautiful, life-changing, thought-provoking and blah blah it is. Surprisingly, this book was so

    that it became the first book that I slammed on the wall twice after reading it. It didn’t only disappoint me but also angered me. I'm surprised to find that harsh critics are swallowing up this trash and calling it a masterpiece. Ugh!

    I’m going to make a list of everything I hate about this book that earned it the topmost place on my list of

    Hazel and Augustus are the flattest cardboard cut-outs I have ever seen in any book. Both of them were like 60-years-old stuck in some teenager's bodies making them very boring and unlikeable. Hazel was such an annoying, stupid and pretentious Mary Sue that I wanted to punch her right in the face. One great example of her stupidity-

    Augustus and Hazel have the same boring, pretentious, know-it-all and indistinguishable personality. Hazel is the female version of Augustus (no, I’m not going to call him affectionately with Gus) and he is the male version of Hazel. These two characters meld together and have no depth at all. I couldn’t connect with them, I felt no pain and sympathy for them and they annoyed me so much that I wanted to stab them.

    It fell from the sky. Seriously, I don’t get what’s so “beautiful” about the relationship between them. They both fall in love within seconds just after laying eyes on each other

    . The romance is undeveloped and it comes from nowhere. I was baffled when Hazel accepted to go to Augustus's house just minutes after meeting him. WHAT THE HELL? How stupid can you be? You fall for a guy's words whom you met just few minutes ago and agree to go to his house!

    Not to mention that the kissing scene in Anne Frank's house was so effing disgusting. Anne Frank's house is considered to be a place of remembrance, a place where 2 families hid during the dark days of Holocaust. If anyone makes out at such a revered site, they would be kicked out regardless of who or what they are. People present around will be disgusted, they won't stand and watch much less clap for the "lovely" couple.

    Cheesy. Emotionless. Ambiguous. Brain-cell burning. Want to hear some

    quotes of mine? Here they are-

    ...Why compare your thoughts to stars and constellations? *sighs*

    ...Yeah, that’s the thing about chocolate, it demands to be eaten.

    ... Umm….What?!

    Me-

    There were senseless dialogues, brain-cell burning metaphors and words thrown around in the book from the dictionary. I’ll stop here because just thinking about them gives me an awful migraine.

    And you know what?

    This book made me roll my eyes in disgust.

    Predictable. Boring. Uninspiring. Put me to sleep. I had to plough through the whole book. Cancer is hard, it's painful but this book didn’t show me that. I couldn’t feel Hazel and Augustus’ struggle against it. I couldn’t feel their pain. TFioS is nothing but a cheesy romance novel.

    Me throughout the book-

    I knew that someone would die. Augustus's death wasn't powerful enough, if Green would've shown his death I would've understood why the world cried a whole bucket over him.

    WHAT THE HELL?? Green tried to make his death sound LIKE HE WENT TO A PARTY LAST WEEK!!!

    Ok, so this book made you cry, right? If a book makes you cry it automatically doesn’t mean that it’s a masterpiece. I can understand that you must’ve felt sad and sympathetic for the characters and must’ve cried but considering that this novel is sad and it made you cry doesn’t make it an awesome, life-changing and beautiful story. I cried after reading Allegiant for days but I hated that book with burning passion, it was one of the worst books I ever read.

    - I don't understand why people compare The Fault in our stars to The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. Zusak is a genius; he handles his themes -death, love, joy, pain, grief etc. - brilliantly in his book, he is an artist of words, painter of vivid imagination, his writing has enough power to break your heart and mend it on the same page. TFios pales in comparison to a gem like The Book Thief.

    Before you start calling me a cold-hearted bitch for hating and criticising this book, let me tell you that if you think you have every right to go around fangirling how wonderful this book was then I believe that I have every right to express my hatred for it whether you like it or not. I know that I’m the only teenager on this planet who hates this book but honestly, I don't care.

    Would I recommend it?

    . I would rather recommend The Book Thief because it deserves the huge hype rather than this trash.

    She's simply perfect for Hazel's boring and unlikeable personality.

    I never mentioned or implied that teenagers are illiterate or can't have a large vocabulary, don't accuse me of something I haven't said. I just find it hard to believe that any teen can come up with nonsensical monologues like the ones below or think it's appropriate to use them in their conversations-

    (Like, wtf?!)

    Especially when they are living in the 21st century because English language is completely different than what it was few centuries ago. Also, it's hard to believe that anyone would talk like that in a normal conversation every single time.

    I am a teen and I go to high school, I know many other teens of my age who have developed a large vocabulary and have brilliant writing skills. That is simply because they love reading and have developed the habit of learning new words from the dictionary from a very young age. I know teens roughly my age with almost perfect speaking and writing skills in English. They write amazing poems and honestly, it takes them a lot of time to ponder over and make their metaphors or poems perfect. They obviously cannot open their mouth and spontaneously say

    Btw, none of the teenage characters from this book show any interest in reading high literature and poetry (the only book Hazel claims to read is

    ) then what's the reason behind their ability to spew pretentious monologues? What reason do they have to have a large vocabulary?

    Moving on, the quotes and metaphors in this book are stupid and cliched. On deeper analysis you'll understand that the philosophy in this book is not real philosophy, it's simply marketing. Take for example this quote-

    "Life is not a wish granting factory"

    How many times have I heard this outside the book? For me the quote above is not a good one. Why? I've been told since I was 3 that life won't give you everything you want. A good quote, imo, tells you something new and it makes you ponder over a new thing, in the case of the quote above, it tells me nothing new, it shows me nothing new and doesn't make me think about anything new because I've already thought over the unfairness of life 1000 times before. That quote is just paraphrased and the whole book is littered with such paraphrased version of quotes that we already come across daily in our lives in simple version. People fall for such quotes because it's written with profound words that make them feel that TFIOS teaches a lot of new things.

    Now going over the cigarette metaphor, Augustus buys a pack of cigarettes regularly just so he could put one in his mouth and not light it thus, giving us another stupid dialogue "It's a metaphor. You keep the killing thing between your teeth but don't give it the power to kill you". Funny that he won't kill himself by lighting up the cigarette but will regularly give money to an industry that is the largest cause of cancer thus, promoting the cigarette industry and indirectly killing others. (What a genius!) Not to mention that he mocks Hazel's cancer right on her face and guess her reaction? She's impressed and readily approves of and participants in his metaphor.

    There's a lot of difference between being wise and being pretentious and Hazel and Augustus are the latter. I don't buy their dialogues because they are extremely ridiculous and cheesy and no argument by fans and authors can change my opinion because Green makes no effort in making the dialogues IN THE BOOK seem plausible. There's no reason for their large vocabulary and ability to spew long monologues IN THE BOOK and I'm analysing only the book nothing outside it, so why should I listen to an outside source? I've read Green's post on Augustus' character being pretentious and imo, he misses the point that his characters are not only pretentious; they are extremely unrealistic as well. Augustus' pretension is not "an intentional flaw", it's simply poor characterisation.

    I'm not saying that kids with cancer cannot be intelligent. A lot of fans say that the characters in the book are special and wise because they have cancer and this book tries hard to show that too. I merely said that having cancer does not mean that you can automatically become wise and gain a lot of knowledge. Don't twist my words.

    I couldn't sympathise with the characters and feel their pain. That doesn't mean that I'm cold hearted.

    I'm NOT hating people who have cancer, I'm NOT hating the characters because they have cancer. I'm hating them for who they are. I'm hating the book because it's poorly written.

    I don't need to have cancer to analyse this book. Having cancer does not mean that you get the rights to say whatever you want to about this book. Every reader whether sick or not has equal rights to analyse and voice their opinions freely on any book. And before you say "omg you don't have cancer and you're not dying so you'll obviously not understand this book!!!111!!!1!!" let me tell you that you know nothing about me. You don't know what I'm going through, you don't know my lifeline, then what gives you the right to judge what my life is like?

    I'll leave you with another quote-

    "I got bored of this book the way you fall asleep: slowly and then all at once."

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  • Richa
    Dec 03, 2012

    Not just from the bottom of my heart (which would literally mean my ventricles, and so, no) but with my whole heart.

    I hate the fact that it

    I hate the fact that it

    I hate the fact that it

    I hate the fact that it gifted me with so much

    when I was expecting to come face to face with tragedy at any moment....it changed my expec

    Not just from the bottom of my heart (which would literally mean my ventricles, and so, no) but with my whole heart.

    I hate the fact that it

    I hate the fact that it

    I hate the fact that it

    I hate the fact that it gifted me with so much

    when I was expecting to come face to face with tragedy at any moment....it changed my expectations, made me believe in Something which did not happen...or maybe did happen.

    I hate the fact that while Hazel Grace

    , I just

    ...no warning, no time to process the myriad emotions coursing through me, nope, nothing, just a huge endless void-filled fall and then a sudden crash that took my breath away, like literally...

    with this bound-to-end-in-oblivion, bound-to-end-in-disaster boy who stared with blue blue eyes and put the killing thing right between his teeth, but never gave it the power to do its killing. (Putting a cigarette right between your teeth and never lighting it, yes, that's

    for you, people, a guy huge on metaphors and symbolism...that hopeless boy).

    I hate the fact that when I least expected it, the story, the words just grabbed me and pulled me in so deep that

    I hate that the fact that right in the

    in the rain of laughter, dry wit, and humour

    would stun me, startle me, wipe the smile right off my face, and sober me up, wake me up from the intoxication of the very real yet false jocularity spun by

    ,

    and then push me back into that rain to dance again.

    I hate the fact that I'm not making my much sense right now....that right now

    And yes, all the

    ... weird, right? But right now I can't bring myself to say that

    ....I don't, I don't, I don't (yes,

    )

    So, *deep breath*, it's a story of a girl named

    , a girl diagnosed with thyroid cancer at the age of 13 who's still

    thanks to a miracle drug which didn't work it's miracle in about 70% of the people but it did work in her.

    So, even though

    , she's still alive and well not kicking, but breathing, with difficulty (because remember her lungs suck at being lungs), but breathing nonetheless.

    She's been nothing but a terminal case ever since her diagnosis. The doctors are simply finding ways of keeping her alive rather than removing the cancer ridden lungs and replacing it with a new one, because let's face it, her chances of surviving such an operation are like next to nothing and why waste a good pair of lungs on a given, bound-to-fail body?

    So,

    .

    Enter

    . He's 17, gorgeous, in remission, and very frankly and much to her surprise interested in her.

    It's a match made in Cancer Kid Support Group, in the

    (you'll know what that means when you read the book...you'll laugh, trust me, you will).

    He is a

    .

    He's the

    Their story begins with a

    ...he stares at her...

    So she stares back...because let's face it...

    (

    She wins.)

    And it progresses into something brilliant, something as bright as the stars, into

    with a capital S....

    I hate the fact that I fell in love with their

    .

    I hate the fact that Hazel Grace took the words right out of my mouth when she said what she said about being a vegetarian...

    and about not knowing what's cool...

    I hate the fact that

    who drove horrifically and his cheesy and yet very endearing attempts to be Prince Charming....(but more so with him...the surprised, excited and innocent side of him..)

    I hate the fact that

    and all she wanted to do was minimise the casualities when (not

    but

    ) she blew up...

    I hate the fact that I felt sorry for a lonely swing set...a

    ...or maybe it was simply a

    ...and the fact that I absolutely love this sentence....

    The Lonely Swing Set...

    or maybe Just Vaguely Pedophilic...

    And even though I fell in love the way you fall from a cliff or a building, (don't really know how that feels..since I've never done that)..

    ....because

    I hate the love letter she wrote him...(

    It's a Venn diagram love letter.)

    I hate the fact that she did not agree with

    (in which Abraham Maslow, an American psychologist, claimed that certain needs must be met before you can even have other kinds of needs.) Something like this...

    Unless and until your needs of the previous level have been fulfilled, you don't even think about the needs of the next level. Of course, like all psychological theories this one too cannot be generalized or accepted universally. Because if there is one law in psychology then it is that there is no law in psychology, there is

    . Every theory has it's use and flaws, applicable to some while not applicable to others. And this one is not applicable in this situation. Nope, not at all.

    I hate the words, the word play in this book...

    I hate the fact that it made me laugh so much, smile a lot, fall in love so hard only to exact revenge later on for giving in to the false security of humour and love by making me cry....oh god, cry so much....so much...

    I get it...totally get it...

    I hate the fact that I ever read this sentence...

    .

    I hate it, I really hate it (forget metaphorical resonances, forget symbolism, I actually hate it).

    I hate the fact that it

    and were probably ruing the fact that there was no umbrella during their time.

    I hate the fact that I

    , half of the night crying, and even after finishing it I couldn't go to sleep, so the rest of the dawn just pacing in my room

    .....and my eyes puffy (Note to self: Do not stay up all night or add crying to it if you do to avoid puffy eyes.)

    Why do I do this to myself??

    And

    I hate that this story is stunningly overwhelming, insightful, irreverent, raw and devastating...and to quote Markus Zusak, it's the kind of story reading which

    ...I'm grateful for having known this

    ...grateful for this

    ....

    And by hate you know I meant love, right?

    Right now,

  • Laurel
    Dec 30, 2012

    EDIT: Changed the rating because it's gotten to the point where my sister and I have inside jokes on how stupid and shallow this book is. I can't think about this book without getting angry.

    I have a history with pretentious people.

    My biggest mess involved two boys in particular who were so incredibly full of themselves that for the first time in my life, I openly expressed my dislike to them. They know that I couldn’t care less about their “hotness” or just how amazing they were. So go

    EDIT: Changed the rating because it's gotten to the point where my sister and I have inside jokes on how stupid and shallow this book is. I can't think about this book without getting angry.

    I have a history with pretentious people.

    My biggest mess involved two boys in particular who were so incredibly full of themselves that for the first time in my life, I openly expressed my dislike to them. They know that I couldn’t care less about their “hotness” or just how amazing they were. So goddamn full of themselves, spoiled rotten, just overall horrible people.

    In short, my personality clashes with theirs entirely and there really is no chance of a friendship. I’d dive into it, but then this wouldn’t be a book review.

    And so I move on.

    is my first John Green book.

    Yeah, I know, but I didn’t really get into reading up until maybe four years ago. And I’m not too into contemporary, but the opportunity presented itself and I took my first dive. My sister is a fan of John Green. She really loves

    and

    and finds

    to be LfA’s quirky New Girl twin that doesn’t own up.

    I almost feel bad for disliking this book, but that’s strictly on the idea of cancer. Cancer is horrible, unpredictable, and the worst part is that it’s your own cells mutating against you. That’s why it’s so hard to defeat. That’s what I wish this book was about: dealing with the cancer that wants to kill you. Instead, I get a book about a fictional miracle drug that keeps Hazel alive so she can have a boy love her

    .

    I came into this book with an open mind, I assure you. But I ended up really wanting to put the book down several times. From the first few pages, I felt something was actually wrong. Like I didn’t know what I was getting myself into. Having finished this book, which, to me, was such a chore to do, I think I’ve stumbled upon decent reasons as to why I really can’t give this any more than two stars.

    If you didn’t know by now,

    tells the story of Hazel, a girl whose thyroid cancer has ceased to grow thanks to a magical miracle drug. But because her cancer life is just so boring, a boy has to make it better.

    Because that is the only way anything gets better in life.

    Boyz.

    This was by far the largest problem I had. Larger than Hazel saying, “I wanna tap that” about Augustus on page 8. This prose was not the voice of a real teenager. It tried, but this did not sound like a teenager suffering from cancer. This was the voice of a teenager who liked to say, “You know what sucks? Cancer. You know what else sucks? Dying.” Why? So the reader could laugh.

    And wouldn’t you know it

    . There is no rest for any real emotion or interest. It’s all laced with some one-liner or trying to be hilariously philosophical when it’s just trying way too hard to keep a reader interested. And this alone, made me find great distaste in the character of Hazel.

    She is not believable because I never learned anything about her. She just hates Support Group and adores Augustus for reasons that were never clarified throughout the book. Oh you like Gus’s smile, his laugh? The idea that he thinks of basketball really as a nod to a baby toy? The idea that he spends money just so he can conduct a metaphor that doesn’t do anything but make him look like a pretentious asshole?

    Oh who am I kidding. This entire book was shallow and pretentious. Everyone thought they were so hilarious because did you know that eggs are restricted to a breakfast food? Those poor scrambled eggs!

    . But think about it! We only have eggs for breakfast!

    Or get this, how about the hurdles event in track? You know what Augustus says about hurdles? He says this after that beautiful basketball connection to a child shoving cylinders into circle holes:

    Augustus Waters,

    , says something like this about a sport. Sports are a very healthy way to escape stress. If anything, Augustus and his philosophical ass should be wondering what the hurdles represent to the hurdlers. HURDLES ARE A SPECIAL EVENT. The hurdlers are probably doing a running event too! They CHOSE to run the hurdles for the challenge.

    But this falls on the level of those scrambled eggs. Hey! If we talk about this and make it sound funny, it’ll be deep! It’ll really scratch the heads of the readers! This just shows how silly and thoughtful Augustus is! Don’t you guys just want to get with him and his awesome cigarette metaphor that HE SPENDS MONEY ON FOR NO FUCKING REASON?

    Guh, you fucking stupid ignorant son of a bitch. This was the line, by the way, that got me in that level of dislike for Augustus that I got on with the asshole dudes that exist in my life. And Hazel just sort of accepts this. Like, what the hell is everyone thinking in this book? What universe are they in? Because this is not a real universe.

    I think now I’m tracking into character territory so here:

    Hazel was the girl who referred to testicular cancer as “cancer to the balls” and then she sees Augustus Waters on page 8 of this book and goes,

    Remember, if you’re not drop dead gorgeous, men, your nice glances are only awkward. That’s it. You can never go farther, and your delicious insight on life will never win the heart of a girl. Because you are just not sexy enough or Augustinian for it. Hazel likes to do this. She likes to put down other guys for her Gus, even though they still BARELY knew each other.

    LOOK AT THAT. What. What is that? This was a nice guy and Hazel’s like, “Well he’s not a fucking Greek God so no thank you.” But what about Augustus, Hazel? You went to his house to watch a movie that you decided was just a silly boy movie that you knew you wouldn’t like because you were a girl. MOVIES DON’T WORK LIKE THAT. What are you even doing!

    You know what I just realized? Hazel is a lot like Mary in The Forest of Hands and Teeth. She hates one thing and loves only one material thing. Hazel hates the cancer support group, and loves

    . Mary hates the Unconsecrated, but loves the ocean. That’s all they have to their name. Which is AMAZING to me that Augustus finds something to love about Hazel. All it is is her John Green wit.

    If you asked Gus what else was there to Hazel besides this one book thing and her wit, I bet you a hundred dollars that he would respond as Derek in

    did with “What else is there?”

    Because that’s all their love is. They’re not bonding over the fact they have cancer. They bonded over

    then experienced an intensified Hey Arnold! Episode about visiting the author who, to no one’s surprise I hope, was a complete jackass then makes a 180 because…because. Who needs reasons.

    HOWEVER, the half star is devoted to Mr. Peter Van Houten, who was the only actual character in this book. Everyone else was flat and pretentious assholes. When Van Houten did it, there was history behind it and a REASON. He actually had an arc! He did things! Despite my lack of care for Augustus and Hazel, the way Peter treated them was abhorring and the only way for me to fix that was to stab the man in the eye. But he changed, and revealed WHY he acted the way he did and there was sense made and he was a good character.

    Structure was fine.

    Still flowed okay despite my need to be done with this.

    I honestly thought everything was funny. I laugh at a loooooot of stuff. This, whatever this is, is not really that funny. It’s shallow, and not really geared to people who want to know the world of cancer and stepping over the obstacle. It’s a cancer-filled girl loving

    a cancer-filled boy. Oh and they meet their favorite author who’s actually an asshole. Cancer is the backseat, and I almost find it insulting.

    I don’t understand why people love this. Tell me all you want that Augustus is a beautiful boy and Hazel just wanted something different in her life, but don’t you DARE tell me that this is deep. This is not a deep book, there’s nothing that touches my heart except shallow wit and a poor man suffering from the cancerous death of his 8 year-old ray of sunshine.

    I could go on, but I think this is enough. If it isn’t, well that’s your opinion. This is mine. You are just gonna have to deal.

    Final Remarks:

    This book should have been about what happened to Peter Van Houten.

    It’d be perfectly parallel to that Hey Arnold! episode I mentioned, but it’d be better than what I read.

    OR, this book should have been about Hazel WITH THE TERMINAL CANCER. Because her inner conflict with cancer would better clash with her ability to be with Augustus and it would've fleshed her out a hell of a lot more than giving her a magical miracle drug.

    ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • Emily May
    Feb 04, 2013

    It seems silly that I have to say this, but I've seen many a negative review of this book met with backlash from John's nerdfighter fans, so I want to make one thing clear: I like John Green. You'll find plenty who worship him as a god amongst men and many who are highly critical of him, I fall into neither of these categories but I do like him and I enjoy watching his videos. I find him funny and I agree with a lot of what he stands for; I also appreciate the amount of charity work he does and

    It seems silly that I have to say this, but I've seen many a negative review of this book met with backlash from John's nerdfighter fans, so I want to make one thing clear: I like John Green. You'll find plenty who worship him as a god amongst men and many who are highly critical of him, I fall into neither of these categories but I do like him and I enjoy watching his videos. I find him funny and I agree with a lot of what he stands for; I also appreciate the amount of charity work he does and the way he helps the "nerds" feel better about themselves and make it out of high school a little less scarred than they might have been. I like John Green.

    But I do not particularly like this book.

    There are plenty of people raving about this book on goodreads, on Kirkus, in various magazines and newspapers... so I realise I am in a tiny minority. I will also admit that I

    not have felt the same if I hadn't already subjected myself to numerous "cancer books" but, as it is, I do not feel anything that unique or interesting has been brought to the table here. For the first half (approx), despite my lack of enthusiasm, I expected to give it three stars because I didn't consider it to be a bad book and it was well-written enough; however, as the book wore on, I began to realise that I was growing more and more bored and found myself struggling to read on. This was something I hadn't anticipated. I'd prepared myself for many different possibilities: heartbreak, a changed perspective on life and death, disdain, annoyance... but not bored indifference. Hence the lower rating.

    One of the first problems I encountered was that the kids were wise beyond their years. And I don't mean intelligent, I mean wise. They came out with things that really only suit people who've been alive a few centuries - like Dumbledore or Gandalf - or at the very least people who are sat comfortably in middle age. I like that Green doesn't patronise his readers by oversimplifying things or dumbing down characters in a condescending effort to appeal to teenagers, but these characters behave in a way that is unnatural to the point where sometimes it is verging on ridiculous. It's not completely unbelievable that some kids exist who are actually like this, but they definitely don't all speak and behave in this way.

    The characters are all, in one way or another, John Green. They all have his quirkiness, his sense of humour; I was picturing several John Greens sat around having a conversation while I was reading

    . In fact, reading this book was a little bit like watching one of Green's vlogs, which might have worked well if JG hadn't dampened the humour with philosophical musings. As it was, I had a book that was trying so very hard to be both funny and sad at the same time and ended up failing to deliver either one as successfully as I would have liked. The dialogue felt false and scripted because of the teens' tendency to showcase their depth and intelligence. Natural conversation between anyone of any age doesn't work like this and I couldn't shake the feeling that there should be a laughter track playing in the background.

    , in my opinion, would have been far better if Green had stuck to humour like Andrews did in

    . I believe that the exaggerated characters and their unrealistic conversations would have been fine in a straight-up humour book because that's not supposed to portray something real and deep and moving. But Green loses it by trying to be philosophical and, in the end, I think he has produced a book that is as melodramatic and message-driven as any other on this issue. And his attempt to balance humour and sadness left me somewhat devoid of emotion throughout and provided fewer laughs than I'd hoped.

    Ultimately, I feel that JG sacrificed humour in order to be deep and philosophical - perhaps this book tried to be too many things, perhaps JG tried to be too clever. But

    was a much better book, in my opinion, because it did the whole serious illness + humour thing but didn't over-complicate things by being philosophical. Like I said near the beginning, perhaps I am just tired of these books and

    needs to be appreciated by someone who has not already exhausted themselves on similar efforts.

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