Readers: February 27th: Apologies for the scattered posting that's about to come during the next week or so. University has just started and I have a lot of work to do to get on top of things (and ahead!). Thanks for your patience, as always.

Publishers: I promise I'm not abandoning the lovely review copies you've sent!
I'm getting through them and the reviews will come eventually!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Review: The Fault in Our Stars

Title: The Fault in Our Stars
Author: John Green
Publisher: Penguin Australia
Published: January 11th 2012
Source: Publisher for review

Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 12, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now. Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault. Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind.

Brutally honest and bittersweet, The Fault in Our Stars will tug at your heart-strings in the very best way. Hazel Lancaster is a cancer survivor but depends on an oxygen tank to keep her weak lungs functioning. Suddenly, they feel like they might collapse when the gorgeous Augustus Waters appears at one of her weekly support group meetings, in support of his blind friend, Isaac. As they slowly bond over their issues and love of books, the two play the dangerous game of falling in love where nothing can be certain, but persevere hand in hand until the very end. An absolutely moving novel that will surely bring you to tears.

Ever since Hazel got a second chance at life, never did she believe love would be in the picture. With all of her baggage, who would be interested? Gus soon makes himself known and quickly proves that she's completely worthy of his affections, making her feel special and like a normal teenage girl should. He charms her with his smile, gets her hooked on bloodbath zombie books, makes her feel loved and even grants her a special wish. Although I did feel things moved along quickly for them, I adored every stage of their relationship. It's emotional, real and feels entirely right. They're meant to be and it's backed up with visible evidence! Gus is one of the most unique YA guys for a variety of reasons - none that I'll be sharing with you! - and he'll win you over the second he appears in the book. I guarantee it!

If you're used to heroines who fight supernatural battles or rebel against corrupt governments, you'll love the refreshing voice of Hazel. How often do you read books like this? Where the girl is thrown into real life-threatening circumstances? Where she has a physical disadvantage? Where she sacrifices her own happiness so that the love of her life won't get hurt if she dies? Not only is Hazel mentally and emotionally strong, she manages to keep her sense of humour and enjoy what she can in life. Her relationship with her friends and family are explored too, realistically showing the affect cancer has on those around her. I truly adore how genuine this book is, not making Hazel's life perfect but really showing all of the flaws and complications.

If, like me, you've never read anything by John Green before, I'd say this is a great place to start. With his perfect balance of extreme wit, humour, romance and heartache, The Fault in Our Stars is a brilliant read. As you fall in love with all of the characters, you'll be hanging onto their every word and waiting to see what will happen next, following them every step of the way on this bumpy journey. Green's beautiful story about love and loss will wrangle your heart this way and that, making you ride his rollercoaster until the very last page. And what a ride it is...

I can't even begin to describe how WOW this book was. I feel pangs in my chest right now! Guh. If you plan on reading this, I suggest grabbing a durable teddy bear, a tub of ice cream and box of tissues. I mean it. 

Find John on Twitter, Goodreads, Facebook and his website.
Buy The Fault In Our Stars from Amazon, The Book Depository and Barnes & Noble.

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