Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 13, 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.
“Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.” This summarises how I felt about this book.
It isn’t the first book I’ve read by John Green, but definitely the one I’ve enjoyed the most. This story written by anyone else would seem cliché or over-done. But John is fantastic at making a story that affects so many people all over the world seem new and different.
The story focuses on Hazel, a young woman living in remission from cancer; coming to terms with the fact that she didn’t die and that all her expectations have changed. She meets a boy who opens her eyes about life and death and makes her rethink everything she once thought about death.
What I loved most about this book was that John never lost me when he explained technical terms; usually authors get lost in technical mumbo-jumbo and they lose their readers along the way. But John kept me engaged and I understood everything technical he explained.
Without giving too much of the story away; you get a feeling like there is going to be a death in the story and there is, so prepare yourself for a good cry. But it’s a happy cry, a cry that tells you how much you feel for a character and how well the authors makes the characters seem real.
I’ll leave you with my favourite quote from this book, John Green has a real way with words, a way that makes me fall at his feet in awe.
“My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.”
4.5 stars our of 5