Review The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, #1 New York Times Bestseller, #1 USA Today Bestseller

#1 New York Times Bestseller
#1 Wall Street Journal Bestseller
#1 USA Today Bestseller
#1 International Bestseller

TIME Magazine’s #1 Fiction Book of 2012
TODAY Book Club pick

Now a Major Motion Picture

Hazel Grace Lancaster—a 16-year-old with cancer that has spread to her lungs—attends a cancer patient support group at her mother’s behest. At first, she hesitates because she feels like it has done nothing for her. She thinks attending the support group could be the worst part of her life, until at one particular support meeting, Hazel meets a 17-year-old boy named Augustus Waters, whose osteosarcoma caused him to lose his right leg, which was replaced with a prosthetic. Augustus is at the support meeting to support Isaac, a boy Augustus’ age with eye cancer. Upon catching Augustus staring at her, Hazel suddenly feels self conscious. They meet after the support group and converse on the fact that they were not “literally” in the heart of Jesus, but in a basement. When everything seems to go well, Augustus pulls out a cigarette and puts it between his lips. Hazel is disgusted by this and yells at him saying that he’s already got cancer and he wants to pay money for more cancer, “Not being able to breathe sucks,” she yells. Augustus calmly explains the metaphor, which is, “You put the thing that kills you right between your teeth but you don’t give it the power to kill you.” Hazel, impressed by this, goes to his place to watch a movie. Hazel and Augustus strike a bond immediately and agree to read each other’s favorite novels. Augustus gives Hazel The Prince of Dawn, and Hazel recommends An Imperial Affliction, a novel written by Peter Van Houten, who lives in Amsterdam, about a cancer-stricken girl named Anna that parallels Hazel’s own experience. After Augustus finishes reading her book, he is frustrated upon learning that the novel ends abruptly without a conclusion. Hazel explains the novel’s author had retreated following the novel’s publication and has not been heard from since.

A week later, Augustus reveals to Hazel that he has tracked down Van Houten’s assistant, Lidewij, and, through her, has managed to start an e-mail correspondence with Van Houten. The two write to Van Houten with questions regarding the novel’s ending and the fate of the mother of Anna. Van Houten eventually replies, explaining that he can only answer Hazel’s questions in person. At a picnic, Augustus surprises Hazel with tickets to Amsterdam to meet Van Houten.

While in Amsterdam, Augustus confesses his love for Hazel. Hazel and Augustus finally meet Van Houten but are shocked to find that he is a mean-spirited drunk. Horrified by Van Houten’s behavior, Lidewij confesses to having arranged the meeting on his behalf, angering Van Houten, who proceeds to insult Hazel’s cancer, starting an argument and causing Hazel and Augustus to flee from the drunken author’s home. Later that night they have sex in Augustus’s hotel room, the first time for both of them.

Augustus confesses to Hazel that his cancer has returned. The two affirm their love and support for one another. Upon their return to Indianapolis, Augustus’s health worsens and he ends up in the ICU for a few days. Fearing his death, Augustus invites Isaac and Hazel to his pre-funeral, where they give eulogies. An extremely sick Augustus dies soon after. This leaves Hazel heartbroken and she doesn’t know what to do with herself. After this traumatic event, Van Houten shows up at Augustus’s funeral to apologize to Hazel.

Hazel learns that Augustus was writing a sequel to An Imperial Affliction. Hazel reads Augustus’s words. He says getting hurt in this world is inevitable, but we do get to choose whom we allow to hurt us, and that he is happy with his choice, and hopes she likes her choice too. The book closes with Hazel stating that she is happy with her choice.

 

 

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Editorial Reviews

Review

CRITICAL ACCLAIM FOR THE FAULT IN OUR STARS:

“Damn near genius . . . The Fault in Our Stars is a love story, one of the most genuine and moving ones in recent American fiction, but it’s also an existential tragedy of tremendous intelligence and courage and sadness.” —Lev Grossman, TIME Magazine

“The greatest romance story of this decade.” —Entertainment Weekly

“This is a book that breaks your heart—not by wearing it down, but by making it bigger until it bursts.”
The Atlantic

“A story about two incandescent kids who will live a long time in the minds of the readers who come to know them.”
—People

“Remarkable . . . A pitch-perfect, elegiac comedy.”
—USA Today

“A smarter, edgier Love Story for the Net Generation.”
—Family Circle 

“Because we all need to feel first love again. . . . Sixteen-year-old Hazel faces terminal cancer with humor and pluck. But it isn’t until she meets Augustus in a support group that she understands how to love or live fully.”
—Oprah.coma Best Book selection and one of “5 Books Every Woman Needs to Read Before Her Next Birthday”

“[Green’s] voice is so compulsively readable that it defies categorization. You will be thankful for the little infinity you spend inside this book.”
—NPR.org

“Hilarious and heartbreaking . . . reminds you that sometimes when life feels like it’s ending, it’s actually just beginning.”
—Parenting magazine 

“John Green deftly mixes the profound and the quotidian in this tough, touching valentine to the human spirit.”
—The Washington Post 

“[Green] shows us true love—two teenagers helping and accepting each other through the most humiliating physical and emotional ordeals—and it is far more romantic than any sunset on the beach.”
New York Times Book Review

“In its every aspect, this novel is a triumph.”
Booklist, starred review

“You know, even as you begin the tale of their young romance, that the end will be 100 kinds of awful, not so much a vale as a brutal canyon of tears. . . . Green’s story of lovers who aren’t so much star-crossed as star-cursed leans on literature’s most durable assets: finely wrought language, beautifully drawn characters and a distinctive voice.”
Frank BruniThe New York Times

“A novel of life and death and the people caught in between, The Fault in Our Stars is John Green at his best. You laugh, you cry, and then you come back for more.”
Markus Zusakbestselling and Printz Honor–winning author of The Book Thief

The Fault in Our Stars takes a spin on universal themes—Will I be loved? Will I be remembered? Will I leave a mark on this world?—by dramatically raising the stakes for the characters who are asking.”
Jodi Picoultbestselling author of My Sister’s Keeper and Sing You Home

“John Green is one of the best writers alive.”
E. Lockhart, National Book Award Finalist and Printz Honor–winning author of The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks and We Were Liars

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