About the book:
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 Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.
Published by: Duttong Books (January 10, 2012)
Genre: YA contemporary + romance
This is one of those books that no matter how hard I try to write a review that will serve this book justice, I am simply incapable of doing so.
If you must, this is a rough overview of my thoughts towards this story:
It is beautiful.
It is heartbreakingly beautiful.
It is sob-inducing and tear-jerking.
It is well-written. Intelligence exudes from the scrawl on these pages through literary references, metaphors, and the characters' words.
It is clever and witty and humorous. Don't be fooled. You will cry while reading this book, but I have no doubt you will also smile and laugh at the conversations Augustus, Hazel Grace, and Isaac have.
It is analytic. It makes me stop and think about the subjects the characters are discussing, whether I agree with their opinions or not, which frequently, might I add, I didn't not agree with. But the subjects were most definitely still worth discussing.
It is so thoughtful and thought-provoking. John Green put so much thought into every. single. word. that was stored in this novel. It's obvious as one reads it. John had been writing some form of TFiOS for ten years, so it makes sense, but the level of extraordinary he manages to reach does not fail to fathom me.
It is rendering. I've gained a whole new perspective on life and how our actions display in the eyes of others, especially someone with a terminal illness.
And lastly (for now) it is highly quotable, which tags along with the thought that this book is well-written.
What I feel for this novel cannot be expressed in my own words. Ironically, the majority of my thoughts on this novel can, however, be shared through "the feels" these said quotable lines give. And I don't mean that I believe every word from this book, but rather, these quotes evoked a response from my heart and mind.
DISCLAIMER ALERT: I didn't have any idea how many quotes I was going to type out in this review until after I typed them. I stopped when I realized that I was practically plagiarizing the book and giving your free access to it right here and now. These aren't even half of lines I highlighted in my ereader though, so I figured I'd be Okay. That was a joke. Please don't sue me, John Green. Please? Okay? But those who haven't read the series, maybe perhaps probably, you should consider NOT reading these quotes until after you read the book. You shouldn't experience "the feels" these quotes exude without the full effect of the full-length novel at the tip of your nose. So as I said.
"...depression is not a side effect of cancer. Depression is a side effect of dying. (Cancer is also a side effect of dying..."
"He had some fantastically improbable eye cancer." (No, this is not a spoiler, for you learn this within the first few pages of the novel and you don't even know who "he" is yet.)
"There is only one thing in this world shittier than biting it from cancer when you're sixteen, and that's having a kid who bites it from cancer."
"He was hot. A nonhot boy stares at you relentlessly and it is, at best, awkward and, at worst, a form of assault. But a hot boy...well."
"I fear oblivion. I fear it like the proverbial blind man who's afraid of the dark."
"Was that insensitive? I can be pretty blind to other people's feelings."
"...if the inevitability of human oblivion worries you, I encourage you to ignore it. God knows that's what everyone else does."
"Okay, so I went into clinic this morning, and I was telling my surgeon that I'd rather be deaf than blind. And he said, 'It doesn't work that way,' and I was, like, 'Yeah, I realize it doesn't work that way; I'm just saying I'd rather be deaf than blind if I had the choice, which I realize i don't have,' and he said, 'Well, the good news is that you won't be deaf,' and i was like, 'Thank you for explaining that my eye cancer isn't going to make me deaf. I feel so fortunate that an intellectual giant like yourself would deign to operate on me."-I
"He sounds like a winner. I'm gonna try to get me some eye cancer just so I can make this guy's acquaintance."-H
"Because you're beautiful. I enjoy looking at beautiful people, and I decided a while ago not to deny myself the simpler pleasures of existence."
"I bought them a minute. Maybe that's the minute that buys them an hour, which is the hour that buys them a year. No one's gonna buy them forever, Hazel Grace, but my life bought them a minute. And that's not nothing."
"Right, of course. But you keep the promise anyway. That's what love is. Love is keeping the promise anyway. Don't you believe in true love?"
"That's the thing about pain. It demands to be felt."
"WHAT?! WHAT IS THIS LIFE?"
"People talk about the courage of cancer patients, and I do not deny that courage. I had been poked and stabbed and poisoned for years, and still I trod on. But make no mistake: In that moment, I would have been very, very happy to die."
"Were she better or you sicker, then the stars would not be so terribly crossed, but it is the nature of stars to cross, and never was Shakespeare more wrong than when he had Cassius note, 'The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars/But in ourselves.' Easy enough to say when you're a ROman nobleman (or Shakespeare!), but there is no shortage of fault to be found amid our stars."
“I'm in love with you."
"I am. I'm in love with you, and I'm not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I'm in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we're all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we'll ever have, and I am in love with you."
"As he read, I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once."
"Some tourists think Amsterdam is a city of sin, but in truth it is a city of freedom. And in freedom, most people find sin."
"The beautiful couple is beautiful."
"The risen sun too bright in her losing eyes."
"On, I wouldn't mind, Hazel Grace. It would be a privilege to have my hear broken by you."
"Nothing happens to the Dutch Tulip Man. He isn't a con man or not a con man; he's God. He's an obvious and unambiguous metaphorical representation of God, and asking what becomes of him is the intellectual equivalent of asking what becomes of the disembodied eyes of Dr. T.J. Eckleburg in Gatsby."
"...most parents don't know really their children."
"It's hard as hell to hold on to your dignity when the risen sun is too bright in your losing eyes..."
"You are going to live a good and long life filled with great and terrible moments that you cannot even imagine yet!"
"My thoughts are stars I can't fathom into constellations."
"We're as likely to hurt the universe as we are to help it, and we're not likely to do either."
"You don't get to choose if you get hurt in this world, old man, but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices."