The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

A life-affirming, heartbreaking, humorous story about life and how we choose to live and leave it. 

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Dutton | Hardcover, 313 pages
In a way, John Green’s characters strain credibility. I don’t know a couple of English Lit majors who can converse like Augustus and Hazel. Or maybe I’ve just been hanging out with the wrong crowd. Keep in mind that these kids’ brains should’ve already been fried with the massive amount of cancer-killing drugs they’ve been subjected to in the past. But I chose to ignore these facts. I love reading about a couple of kids who are sometimes way too intelligent for their own good. I love knowing that even when a teen spends most of his waking moments playing video games, he doesn’t necessarily lose brain cells. But then again, that’s just probably the author talking. John Green’s own prolific brilliance shines through in his characters.

I feel like a tongue-tied fool who can’t make heads and tails of her thoughts so the words come out all garbled and stupid. The words come out in a rush that they stumble upon each other, resulting in a chain of burbled inanity. I thought of writing a poem. Because, really, if there’s anyone who could inspire poetry, there’d be none deserving than Augustus and Hazel. Their courage, their friendships and love, their strength and their otherwise mostly realistic outlook in life. But alas, anything that I’ve written just kind of look like a dimwit’s attempt at nursery rhymes.

I noticed that most of my friends on Goodreads didn’t even bother writing a review though majority of them gave it a five. I’ve thought about skipping it myself but when your heart and your mind is so full that you’re one emotion away from ballooning up like a blowfish, you simply have to buckle up and put it down into words.

So what was the book about?

The story is told through the pragmatist voice of Hazel; a sixteen year-old girl who was about to walk toward the light but lived by a miracle. An experimental drug known only to work to a select few cancer victims extended her already borrowed life. She walks around carting an oxygen tank, connected to tubes that help her breathe. Smart beyond her years, conscious and accepting of her lonely existence. Until she meets this boy in the literal heart of Jesus at the basement of a church. The attraction was instantaneous. Augustus couldn’t look away from Hazel, Natalie Portman’s doppelgänger, post V for Vendetta. Hazel, in turn, was severely taken in by the handsome boy. It was love at first sight – for Augustus, anyway. Their story and how they didn’t want to be defined by their sickness thus unfold. It was most often funny and heartwarming but in the end, it wasn’t how I wanted my stories to end. And that made it even more perfect.

I hate swooning over boys in my reviews. It just feel so superficial. I can’t take myself seriously when I mention how hot the character is. Especially if the book warrants some level of sincerity. But this near perfect boy stole a piece of me that had always been wholly reserved for Jonah Griggs.  He was brilliant, sweet and a smart-ass who backed his swagger with quick-witted intelligence. He will make you want your own Augustus as I have wanted my own Griggs.

I have so much to say but I’m not articulate enough to say it. My reserves are spent; my heart full. I’m slightly intoxicated with no hope of sobering up. And that is bad news to the books in my unread pile. Because really, how do you top this? A new standard is set; five star ratings is not what it used to be. I can’t just give it five just because I enjoyed it. A book has to change me, it has to make me see.

I want to read his other works but I’m kind of intimidated and maybe even plenty scared. Maybe someday. But for now, I’m going to bask in the glory that is TFioS, spread the love in my family (starting with my daughter) and maybe even re-read it sometime this week.

My rating: 5 out of 5 Stars to go along
with the 5 boxes of tissues. 

  • This book sounds heartbreaking, but really good!!! I have a hard time reading sad books because they leave me depressed but I have heard so many amazing things about this book I might have to give it a try!!!

    dwayne of Anchorage Personal Injury Attorney

  • I have this one, Joy but I'm afraid to read it! I'd probably need 10 boxes of tissues! Augustus and Hazel sound so amazing and brave in the face of something so unfair! Brilliant review. 🙂

  • I hear you about wanting to read all of John Green's books! So many reviewers have raved about him as an author that I do intend finally to set aside a week this summer to read his novels.

  • Loved this book! I only heard about it at the end of last year. So glad I didn't miss it altogether!

  • I have this one in my Audible Library to listen to. Maybe soon. Glad you liked it.

  • Sigh, I'm so glad that you loved this book so much. <3 Ever since I first read it in December I've wanted everyone to read it. It's just perfect. Don't think there are many books that can top it 🙂 Augustus and Jonah. <3 Perfect boys 😀 Your review is amazing.

  • I really want to pick it up but I'm scared to fall in love with these characters and to break my heart in too many little pieces. I loved your review, I'm also one of those people who can't find a way how to express the deep love for such a memorable book, but you certainly nailed it!

  • Jeez, this book is almost universally loved by almost everyone I know. Box of tissue reads scare me though, which is why I haven't attempted it yet! I'm so glad you were moved by it.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

  • Oh wow this review is beautiful Joy, I definitely think your review has given it the credit it deserves. I still have to read this book, but the impression it left with you makes me want to pick it up right away, even though I have so many books to keep me busy. Also any character that steals a piece of you which belonged to Jonah Griggs I need to meet right away!

  • You're right, I don't know of any teens, or anyone really, who talks the way these characters do but I could never find it in me to care much. I was one of the people who just couldn't find it in me to write a review. Just, such a beautiful book. Augustus is one of my favorites and I'm sure Jonah won't mind that he has to share you. 🙂

  • This is the best book I read last year! Made me really sad for days 🙁
    You're review reminded me of how I enjoyed and loved this book. You just triggered me to reread it! :O
    Great review 🙂

  • Awww Joy! I'm going to have to re-read this one now. Wasn't this book perfect? Great review!

  • I hope to read more of his works Joy! Let's do a John Green week sometime 😛

    I can see the point of both character being too intelligent, I mean they're brilliant for all I know. John Green has established this rapport with his readers and it worked so well in this novel. I cried a bucket load with this one. And I totally understand your friends on Goodreads, even I can't properly review this book.

    We Fancy Books