Friday, January 27, 2012

Review: The Fault In Our Stars

Author: John Green
Release Date: Already out!
Publisher: Penguin
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Book Depsoitory / Amazon
Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 12, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now.

Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault.

Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind.

Hazel Lancaster can't breathe. At least not without a oxygen tank attached to her body 24/7. Cancer shrunk her lungs and she doesn't know how long she has left. She just knows it's not a permanent thing, but life isn't permanent for any of us. It's unfair and devastating, but she not a whiny, brooding character. She fights back in her own way, by using wry humour and intellect to spin the depressing void that is death into a refreshing, thought-provoking and often funny perspective. Since the cancer came, forcing her to leave school, she still interacts with her best friend occasionally, but much of Hazel's life is spent within the pages of books. One in particular. Until she meets Augustus Waters at her cancer support group. A gorgeous boy who changes her life from the moment they locks eyes on one another. Drawn together by Hazel's obsession with the novel, An Imperial Affliction and it's controversial ending, she and Augustus take off an a life-changing journey that will not only have a long-lasting effect on their hearts, but on yours too.

Hazel is at first reluctant for things to grow serious between them, because she knows she won't be around for long. Augustus has lost so much thanks to cancer and she cannot - will not - be the cause of more suffering for him. But it proves extraordinarily difficult for her to deny that crooked smile and quirky, inquisitive mind of his that so compliments her own. The chemistry between Hazel and Augustus was undeniable. They had that zing. It was sweet and smart and a beautiful thing to watch evolve, to strengthen and deepen and reach a point where you're so invested in this relationship that you just want to climb into the book and witness this unfolding in 3D.

While at times I found the language to be slightly disbelieving for 16 and 17 year old teenagers (as in, Brodie does not understand that big word, please allow me to pause a moment so I can Google and feel smarter), it made for such intellectual, highly entertaining interactions between both characters.  They banter and ponder philosophical questions that linger in your mind long after you close the book. John Green wins you over with these endearing characters and heart warming romance.... and then plummets everything on a downward bender, with you clinging to the raft, unable to jump off. Instead you stare wide-eyed and fearful at where he's taking you. How will it all end for these larger than life characters who have so deeply embedded themselves in your mind, your heart and your Favourite Characters of All Time vault?

The raw and intense look into the devastating effects of cancer will stab at your heart and then cruelly twist the blade deeper and deeper. They see one another at their best and their worst, at the lowest of lows, but never did they leave or say it was all too much. They stuck by each other's side and proved a love so real, so strong and so unequivocally moving.

I cried so much in the last 1/4 of this book. One minute John had me grinning like crazy and literally the next sentence, he would crush it all and reduce me to a blubbering mess of tears. And then make me laugh again. This was my first taste of his work and I have come to the conclusion that he is a damn talented writer. The Fault in Our Stars is an honest, witty, heart-wrenching exploration of two teens united by a common love and a common enemy. It's a story that forces you reassess your own life, to never take for granted the fact that you can breathe without help or run on two legs. To live for today, fight for tomorrow and embrace every moment to its fullest potential.

 5/5 Golden Apples

28 comments:

  1. Hahahahahah I don't bother with googling 'big words' anymore; there are so many that I've just given up:DD *sigh* you do realize I have a GAZILLION books on my TBR pile, AND YOU HAVE TO WRITE YET ANOTHER FLAWLESS REVIEW! AND NOW IM SO TEMPTED TO BUY & READ THIS IMMEDIATELY!! One day, when I run out of time or money, I shall come back to haunt you! But other than that, I've decided I'm DEFINITELY reading this <3 I cannot resist heart-wrenching books about cancer, especially when there's such a beautiful romance included as well! Omg, just reading your review is breaking my heart right now :/ I NEED TO READ THIS!!!!! Brilliant review Brodie <3

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    1. I like to have a few big words in my vocabulary to slip into conversations so people think 'WOW SHE SOUNDS SO SMART AND SOPHISTICATED' because the reality is the exact opposite :P

      Hahaha awwww thank you!! <3 oh my gosh, you will LOVE this! Beautiful romance and leaves you with an ache in your heart that is both bittersweet and uplifting. .... crap. I think I need to go reread!

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    2. but if you SOUND smart, then the most likely thing is, u are smart, because the reading taught you a new word that u used correctly.

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  2. I just ordered this one a few days ago! I've heard nothing but amazing things about it so I hope it gets here soon so I can read it. I love John Green's writing and this one sounds like his most emotional book yet. I love a really good emotional book. Great review :)

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    1. I hope your copy arrives soon!! I'm so excited for you to read it, especially since you love his writing. I love an emotional book too... there's something about a good book that can drain your emotions that is so.. rewarding haha.

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  3. i'm still on the fence/ i got book burn last week/ sorry 2 say THG was not 4me/while pure by juliiana baggot i liked more

    don't hate me

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    1. Aww, sucks to hear you didn't love THG! Haha of course I won't hate you! Not everyone likes the same book, we all have different opinions ;)

      If you decide to give this a go, fingers crossed you like it!

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  4. Brodie, I nearly cried reading your review!!!! SO BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN!!!! I must find the perfect time to read this book. Like grab a box of tissues, sit in a couch and eat ice cream? (As recommended by Lisa in her review) LOL. Aaa, Looking for Alaska made me cry but this sounds even more sad. Anyway, ANOTHER PERFECT REVIEW, Brodie!! ♥ SO glad you enjoyed it!

    Celine @ Forget-me-not

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    1. Awww gosh, you're going to seriously inflate my ego. And make that thing inside my chest actually beat for the first time :) Thank you! <333333

      Haha YES! Exactly what Lisa recommended! Comfort and comfort food are the necessities while reading this book. Oh man, I cannot wait to read Looking For Alaska!

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  5. Some of the girls in my English Society meeting yesterday were talking about this book and shaming me about my lack of John Green novel reading! Lol. I want to read this one because a lot of people have been talking about how much they love it, but I'm not really in the mood for a contemporary book at the moment, so I'm going to hold off. But I WILL be reading it. Eventually. Maybe. Some day. Lol.

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    1. Haha I've felt that shame at not having read John Green before, but now I can finally join the cool kids club. And YES, NATALIE. YOU MUST READ IT EVENTUALLY. I will hold you to that, don't worry :P

      But I totally get you not wanting a contemp at the moment. Sometimes you're just in a mood for a certain type of book.

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  6. Aaaah! You know you make this sound amazing, right? Right?!
    Now I'm both crazy excited and crazy terrified to read it... I can't decide which crazy is winning out the moment. *must resist urge to go spoiler hunting*
    You know this is YOUR fault, right? Prior to you building me I wouldn't have thought twice about looking for spoilers. Now I just can't do it.
    Thats it. I'm going to an actual brick and mortar bookstore and looking for this tomorrow. Your review is perfect. Perfect perfection perfection. I'm getting all emotional just read IT :O

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    1. Buahahha. Who would have thought I'd be a good influence on ANYONE? But you don't know how happy I am to hear that because you do NOT want to read spoilers for this ending!!

      Whoa. a REAL bookstore? That you can touch with your fingers, not your mouse? MY MISSION IS COMPLETE. Also, I do believe I'm blushing <3333

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  7. I have been following Green's work for several years now, and I have been consistently impressed with the work he has done. However, his previous novels have always fallen short of excellence, something that has changed with the Young Adult author's newest outing. The Fault in Our Stars is wonderful.

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    1. It's a shame to hear his previous novels have fallen short for you, but I totally agree with you on this one. Absolutely amazing! His ability to make you simulaneously cry and laugh... to warm your heart and claw at it.... the man knows his stuff :)

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  8. I WANT TO READ THIS BOOK SO SO BADLY BRODIE!!!!!! *cries* Great review as always. I think I'm going to cry when I read this book. Sounds like I will cry for weeks. haha.

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    1. I WANT YOU TO READ THIS BOOK SO BADLY ERIN!!!!! Haha YES. Weeks. Maybe months. I am so excited for you to read this, I'm sure you will love it!! Let me know when you get a copy!

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  9. BRODIEEEEEEEEEE. This book. Gah. Like you, I just cried and cried towards the end. This is only the second John Green book I've read -- and I was strangely not really into Looking for Alaska -- but I so loved this one. So much. I'm almost afraid to give his other works a go because this was just magnificent.

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    1. Even thought you weren't really into Looking for Alaska, I'm SO glad you still felt encouraged to give another of his books a try. because yeah.... TEARJERKER, MUCH?!?!

      If you do try his other books, let me know how they are. I have a copy of Looking for Alaska, but I'm also interested in his other stuff. Once my tear ducts have had a rest ;(

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  10. This books seems to be all over the blogs/Goodreads/twitter right now. I am sure I will cry a lot when I finally get a copy too!

    Mands

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    1. The hype it's getting is DEFINITELY worth it!! *hands you a box of tissues* It's bad to wish for someone to cry, but I kinda want people to get affected the way I was while reading this haha.

      Oh and... Vegan YA Nerds? Can I say LOVE!!! It's 2:30am right now so I'm zonked, but I am totally checking out your blog tomorrow! <3

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  11. Brilliant review! You always know what to say! Agree with every little bit of it <3

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    1. Awww thanks, Lisa! So happy we both loved this. And now we NEED another fix of Green's genius mind <33

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  12. oooooh!! This sounds SO good! And oh so weepy, too. *pats* I like a good book that makes me cry but not THAT much! I guess I'm not ready to cry again while reading. I'm in that 'I want something fast, intense, wow-worthy and earth-shattering' phase. I'm mostly reading paranormal, fantasy and dystopian as of now. But when I'm ready, I'll switch to contemporary and maybe try this one out! I agree with Shirley! You write flawless, enthusiastic reviews that make me lose more and more money from my wallet. LOL! Great review!!

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  13. I hadn't heard of John Green, I know what rock was I under until this book, now I know he has written some works. I know I am going to bawl reading this, but I have to read it. Great review:D

    p.s. I have to google big words too sometimes..hehe!

    MIchelle

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  14. I feel like the only person in the ENTIRE world that doesn't love John Green books :P. I've only read An Abundance of Katherines - but I just didn't like it. After your raving review of The Fault in Our Stars, though, I think I'm going to have to give it a try, especially since it seems to be so emotional and powerful! Great review :).

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  15. First Rachel Hawkins, now you. Can't think of two better people to listen to. I've heard SOOOOO much about John Green, and it's killing me that I don't have this book. I want to read it and laugh and fall in love and cry buckets of sad water. Definitely going to hunt this one down if it's the last thing I do.

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  16. Awesome review! I didn't read the second half of it though- I was soo scared of spoilers! I've been waiting to read TFIOS!!!! I haven't bought it yet. Don't ask me why!! (been too busy with college to get to ordering it) Now I must read it! Must must must!

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