I am very late in reading John Green's book The Fault In Our Stars. It is now a worldwide sensation and has even been adapted into a film which is currently out at the cinema. From watching the film trailer it didn't look like it was going to be my type of book. After countless recommendations I decided to give the book a read after putting it off for a long time. I almost feel bad writing a negative review about a book about young people with cancer but it was one of the most boring books that I have ever read for most of the way through. The book follows the friendship of two teenagers with terminal illnesses.
I couldn't connect with the characters at all. The two leads Hazel and Augustus are two of the most boring people I have ever read about. They seem completely obsessed with their illnesses and don't speak like normal teenagers would. Yes I appreciate the fact that I don't know what a teen with cancer is feeling but I'm sure they act nothing at all like Hazel and Augustus do. For example, half a page is dedicated to Hazel discussing how unfair it is that eggs are solely served at breakfast. Simple plot points like that fact the couple share their first kiss in the Anne Frank museum and then the other visitors applauded frustrated me and it was enough to put me off the book until the next incident that frustrated me came along.
I can't say all bad things about this book. At the end of the day it did still end up managing to make me cry whilst reading on public transport at a certain point in the book. The last 20% or so of the book was a real turning point. I found some moments incredibly heartwarming and it really showed the value of family, love and friendship when it mattered the most. Although I didn't enjoy reading about cancer and the negative aspects that come with the disease if the entire book was more like the last few chapters I would've enjoyed it much more.
I do like the idea that Green has written this book. Not many books highlight the struggles of teenage cancer and for it to have been turned into a film too can only be a good thing in raising awareness. Unfortunately for me the book falls a little flat and it didn't meet the high expectations that people had given me. It did keep my attention towards the end but for most of the book I just wanted to skip through chapters to get to the end. I didn't enjoy reading about teenagers with terminal illnesses but I think you should read this book if you enjoyed the film. If like me you're just reading to find out what the hype is about I wouldn't recommend that you read it. Personally I didn't enjoy it therefore couldn't recommend it to others to read.
2 stars out of 5
The Fault In Our Stars - John Green. Click here to buy from Waterstones