The Fault In Our Stars Critique

For my Quarter 3 Independent Reading, I chose to read “The Fault In Our Stars” by John Green. I chose to read this book because I enjoyed many other John Green books and figured I would like this one as well. I also loved the movie and thought reading the book might be a good idea. I decided to look into why John Green decided to write this story. I found that he met a young cancer patient named Esther Earl who was a fan of his books and ended up becoming close friends with her. Many aspects of Esther’s appearance, illness, and personality, can be found in the character of Hazel Grace. John makes sure to repeatedly reminds readers that Hazel is not Esther. Esther eventually passed away from her disease. She taught John that a short life can be just as meaningful as a long life hence the whole metaphor with “some infinities are larger than others”. The book is about a seventeen-year-old girl named Hazel Grace. Having lived with cancer for most of her life, she is used to the lifestyle and is reluctant to go to a cancer patients’ support group. In one of the meetings, she catches the eye of Augustus Waters, who we learn is a cancer survivor himself. I do get that in order for this book to be more popular there would be some type of romance involved, which in my opinion is totally fine and what you should expect from a book written by John Green. As their story continues, Hazel and Augustus spend more and more time together bonding over things just no one else would truly understand. Hazel shares with Augustus her favorite book and like any romance, Augustus pays attention to this even using his last wish for a trip to meet the author. During this trip, their bond becomes even stronger. Augustus confesses that while Hazel was in the ICU he had a body scan which revealed his cancer has returned and spread everywhere. I think this aspect really sold the book as the drama/romance it was aiming to be. Earlier in the novel, Hazel expresses that she likes Augustus a lot, but she knows she’ll hurt him when she dies, comparing herself to a grenade. Now at the point, Augustus reveals his cancer is back, Hazel realizes the opposite is now the case and he is the grenade.  There are also some central themes in this story that amplify its push towards the main goal of the novel. The main characters in the novel are forced to confront death in a way that the young and healthy aren’t. The fear of oblivion is brought up several times throughout the story. The fear of not being remembered pushes the mentality of Augustus throughout the novel. Hazel responds to this trying to make him realize that “some infinities are larger than others”. I think there were definitely a lot of aspects of this story that really appeal to the audience. A story of young love battling with things they simply just cannot control. I would definitely recommend this story to anyone who loves a romance novel.

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