Author: John Green
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, Drama, YA
Publication Date: January 10, 2012
Publisher: Dutton Books
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.
I've been putting off this review for a long time because I simply do not know where to start. I've read the book and watched the movie. and I'm going to be completely frank in this review. But first of all, I have to warn huge fans of TFiOS that this is a negative review. If you don't want to hear me express my thoughts negatively towards your favourite book, I highly suggest you don't read this review, because I am an unapologetic reviewer.
Despite the "emotional moments" and those parts where I felt like I should have cried or something, I didn't feel anything. Instead, I felt as if the ending was kind of expected and the plot was laid out from the beginning. It's not as if John Green was going to spend 313 pages talking about this relationship and just have Hazel and Gus have babies and live happily ever after. Well, he might have, but judging from the other John Green books I have read, John's not going to be that nice.
And the only reason why many like this book is because Hazel and Gus have cancer. If it wasn't for fucking cancer, everyone would have thought this book was plain out pointless and dumb, like all other John Green books (I've read all of them and they're the most pointless flying shits ever written in my honest opinion). I'm not saying that cancer is dumb, I pray for those who have cancer to kick cancer's fucking ass and keep on fighting. It doesn't have anything else other than the sappy romance.
The characters. Cardboard cutouts. They had no character development throughout the book, and they were identical to John Green's other characters, the female being either a Margo/Hazel/Alaska and the male being a Quentin/Collin/Gus/Miles. The characters were unrealistic and they felt old and definitely not like almost adults. I didn't connect with either of them at all, and I really didn't like reading in Hazel's perspective. It was childish and I just don't really like reading in first person in general, unless it is very well written. And Gus was an exact replica of Hazel, but male. They have no defining characteristics, and they don't have their own voice. Great characters are one of the most important things for me when reading a book, and sadly TFiOS just didn't achieve that.
I also found it unrealistic, and how everything just happened so fast. Here's how it felt like to me:
Gus: *swoons over Hazel*
Hazel: *swoons over Gus*
Hazel: I want to go to Amsterdam
Gus: Okay, I wished to go to Amsterdam
--after the whole Peter van Houten thing happens--
Gus and Hazel: Yay we're not virgins anymore
And the list could go on and on.
The writing was strange, especially the metaphors. GUS WHY DO YOU WASTE MONEY FOR NOTHING?? I think I get the Okay? Okay. part, but it's not really original, and it's so incredibly on the surface. I was expecting some deep stuff from this book, but no, I could probably rewrite this book since the writing was so simple and smash a few simple words together.
I guess the book was kind of cute, but I just didn't like it. There are too many noticeable faults in this book (haha), and perhaps I might have liked it better if had not yet read Green's other books. It was as if I was reading Looking for Alaska, Paper Towns, or An Abundance of Katherines again, since they all use the exact same template. It might have been a better book if it was on Peter van Houten though, just saying ;)