Thursday, 12 September 2013

The Fault Amongst Our Stars

Even though I may be the last person on this earth to have read John Green's The Fault in Our Stars, I still must warn you that this review may or may not contain spoilers.  Just in case, you know? :)

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 Walters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.

This is what I wrote once I had finished John Green's The Fault Amongst Our Stars:
I felt like I was continually being bombarded with situations and tropes to make me cry.  Yes, Green's writing style made this book easier to read than the subject matter would normally allow.  Yes, I enjoyed reading how Hazel and Augustus' friendship blossomed through a mutual love of a book.  But, and it's a big BUT, why does the seemingly healthy one always have to get sick in order to validate the story?  That's not a twist anymore, it's become an expectation.

The only part that actually made old cold-hearted me cry was when Hazel's mother claims that once Hazel dies, she won't be a mom anymore.  And I thought that was the saddest thing I had ever read.  The statement is sort of retracted towards the end, with Hazel's mom realising she'll always be a mom, which is a shame, because yes, although she will always be Hazel's mother, she won't have anyone to mother.

I thought there were some interesting philosophical ideas here, (especially for someone who hasn't got a clue like me), as well as some interesting thoughts about what you can insinuate with the form of fiction, but I wouldn't say that John Green convinced me enough to get emotionally invested in his characters: and wasn't that supposed to be the whole point?  I want to be sad when a character that I've spent 300+ pages with gets sick; I want to feel all the things.  I don't want to feel that I've been duped, and I think that's all I felt after finishing The Fault Among Our Stars. 


  1. After reading a couple of John Green's other books, I've been wary of him, even when this came out and it was SUPER popular. And now all the bloggers I trust are reading it and talking about how obviously manipulative and annoying it is, so yeah, I think I'm done with John Green for good. Blah.

    1. Are all his books really samey then? I had been thinking of maybe trying another of his other novels, but I'm not so sure now if it's just going to be a groundhog day situation!