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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Book Review: The Fault in Our Stars

John Green's novel is pure Young Adult fiction.  It is written from the perspective of a 16-year old and the language is thus a degree.  You'll find plenty of "whatever"s and other teen speak, but you'll also find a number of words the book's intended teen audience will only recognize if they are heavily studying for their SATs.  I happen to like that.  The author is realistic about how teenagers speak, but he does not insult them by assuming they don't think in more eloquent terms.  Teens are usually smarter than they let on and Green credits them as such.

Hazel has come to terms with her condition as a terminally ill cancer patient.  She recognizes her lot in life and proceeds like any other 16-year old, with sarcasm.  The only difference is that she totes around an oxygen tank wherever she goes.  Her life, however, is awakened when she begrudgingly attends a support group for teen cancer patients and meets Augustus.  Augustus is in remission and has an unmatched zeal for life.  He's the jock to Hazel's bookworm but is nonetheless taken by her.  As their romance develops, Hazel begins to open up to new friendships and grows quite the backbone.  You'll cheer on this couple...and then you'll cry.  You'll sob.  Just warning you.

By the end of the one to two sittings it takes to finish this book, you'll be exhausted from the crying, yes, but you'll also remember how great it is to feel young and alive.  Look out for the movie version to hit theaters in June.

3 out of 5 stars (if I was a teenager I'd give it a 4)

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