Let’s talk about a book. Let’s talk about a book that is unfortunately very popular. In fact, it is so popular, it’s been made into a movie.
No, it’s not Twilight.
It’s The Fault In Our Stars – by John Green.
This book is the fault in our literature.
I picked this book up hearing pretty good things about it. After reading the inside cover and thinking it was pretty ideal for me since I am a sucker for generally sadder books, I bought it.
Let me tell you that I tore through this book in a very short period of time. When I was finished, to be quite honest I was confused. Throughout the entire book I didn’t understand what I was reading. It should have been called How to write the most depressing piece of “literature.”
But it’s not. It’s been read by millions and hailed by readers and critics that this is an amazing piece of writing. I’m here to tell you that it’s not.
Spoilers are abounding…
The characters are not likable at all.
Hazel Grace, the most likable trait about her is the fact that she has cancer. The sympathy card only lasts for so long. She meets a boy named Augustus Waters at a support meeting for cancer patients. It’s love at first sight. Augustus who is in remission, has lost a leg to cancer. He keeps a cigarette with him at all times in an act of defiance of cancer/death. It’s garbage like this that makes the book so hard to like. Who keeps a cigarette between their ear and head in a cheesy, pointless attempt to defy death? The pure character of Augustus is one of a self-righteous douchebag. I’m sorry but there’s no other way to put it. He’s arrogant, but at the same time literally perfect – just as Hazel is. Everyone is just faultless (pun). They’re just so perfect for each other.
Isaac is a side character who unfortunately, is also not likeable simply due to the fact that he is the most depressing part of the book. He has one eye. Let me restate this. He has one eye. He has cancer in his eyes.
So the theme in this book is – everything bad that can happen will, in the saddest way possible. That’s why this book is an embarrassment to literature. It’s not a book. It’s a lovely dovey snuff film made into a fictional words.
Hazel has the opportunity to go across the world with Augustus to meet her favorite writer. This writer had been the center of her dreams to meet. When they meet him, he is an absurd drunk who is as offensive to them as possible. He makes fun of them for having cancer and pretty much ruins their trip. Then there is the part with Augustus and Hazel making out on the steps of Anne Frank’s house – because that’s totally cool and not offensive at all. The most outrageous part about it was that bystanders clapped and applauded them. This is why the characters are so awful. They do whatever they want because they have cancer and think it’s justified. So I guess in that light – they are perfect for each other.
So during this horrible and depressive trip, it’s announced that Augustus’ cancer came back. But it more than just came back. It’s literally everywhere. So what happens? Hazel who had cancer the entire time lives, Augustus dies in a terribly slow way. Isaac had his other eye removed and his girlfriend broke up with him.
People think that because this book made them sad makes it a good book. Literature is not defined by how sad it makes you. That’s all this book does. It created the worse set of characters in the most depressing scenario and John Green yelled at every reader – “ARE YOU SAD YET?”
The worst part about all of this is I wrote a book about a teenager with cancer years ago. When I explain the story to any interested reader, I have to hear the question “Oh so it’s like Fault In Our Stars.”
No. It’s not.
I don’t write this from a high place thinking I’m such a great writer because I’m not. But when I see garbage being called gold, I get upset.
Rant – over.
Thanks for reading and do yourself a favor and don’t read this book.