Tuesday, April 17, 2012

CBR IV # 22 - The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

Kids with cancer always bring out the tears. But far from being a Lifetime movie, this book doesn't feel like it's actively trying to hurt your heart, it just does.

16 year old Hazel is a career cancer patient. The question is not if she'll die but when. This has turned her into a bit of a recluse, spending her time reading and watching shitty reality shows. She doesn't want to inflict herself on other people, knowing she'll soon be leaving. But the cancer support group brings an unexpected hottie, Augustus Waters, who is a survivor. They form an instant connection and soon form a strong bond. Oh, they are in love.

John Green's teenagers always seem impossibly smart. Their conversations deeply philosophical and their words infinitely quotable. Nevertheless, they still theseem like real teenagers somehow. Feeling the stuff that that we felt, just more eloquent, I guess. Hazel, I like her. She's not a manic pixie dream girl like Alaska. She's steady and smart and sarcastic. Augustus seems to good to be true at first but as you get to know him, his cracks show and he turns out to just be this kid. A really good one, but a kid nevertheless. And their love, how can a book with kids with cancer turn out to be anything but a tragedy?

But like I said, the book isn't just a cancer book. It's realistic and thought provoking. Yes, one should prepare their tissues when reading this, but one should also prepare their brain.