Critical Review - The Fault in our Stars

Topics: Suffering, Character, Fiction Pages: 2 (743 words) Published: May 25, 2014

The Fault in our Stars is a young adult novel written by John Green. It is based on the remission of a 16-year-old Thyroid cancer patient, Hazel Grace who relentlessly struggles to breathe. She attends a Cancer Kid Support Group where she meets Augustus Waters, a 17-year-old guy diagnosed with osteosarcoma. They form a close relationship and constantly share their love for a book called “An Imperial Affliction” written by Peter Van Houten who resigned from writing it halfway. Upon the desperation in finding out the ending, the two protagonists set off to Netherlands to meet the author. Their journey together reveals the themes of love, grief, loss, and both physical and mental pain. Throughout the book, there are reoccurring metaphors of water and stars; water representing death and stars signifying hope, hence the name ‘The Fault in our Stars’. Each of these themes along with the repeated motifs the author creates, reaches out to the reader and causes them to be drawn into the lives of the characters and their relation to each other.

The two protagonists dread each day with the constant worry that they’d pass away any minute. Augustus and Hazel’s love for each other triumphs over struggle and hardship but “… yet still [they] worried… Worry is yet another side effect of dying.” The times when they are not contemplating what it means to be gone, they’re drawn into ‘An Imperial Affliction’ (AIA). John Green purposely made the characters metaphorically relatable to those in AIA so there is a meaning to the existence of the book. The two sweethearts chase their dreams all the way to Netherlands in order to meet up with Peter Van Houten, a “…rude, abrasive, and utterly drunk” father of a departed cancer kid. Hazel and Gus both reminded him of her, and the “circumstances that made him so cruel” and caused pain in his life. John Green intended on Peter Van Houten’s charisma to be the way he wrote it as he himself...
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