Oh, dear. It's not as though I wasn't expecting a book about teenagers with cancer to make me cry. Come on, we all know I'm a huge cry baby, and I don't hide from that. And yet, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green wiped me out last night. I climbed in bed early about halfway through the book expecting to read a little, but as I literally read it and wept, I couldn't put it down. I stayed up much too late to finish, but it was totally worth it. A re-read will most certainly be in my future.
Hazel is a sixteen-year-old girl with a terminal form of lung cancer. Her parents are worried that she doesn't have enough friends and so they force her to attend a support group with other teenage cancer patients. She would much rather stay home, hang out with her parents and watch endless episodes of America's Next Top Model, but her parents want more for her. At one meeting, Hazel is introduced to Augustus who is a cancer survivor. He survived and his odds of recurrence are very low, but he did lose one of his legs to the disease. And since this is a Young Adult novel, the two begin a relationship. But don't forget, it's a book about teenagers with cancer. Teenagers. With cancer. Of course, I'm not going to spoil it for you, but I do want you to remember the premise of the book before you get too invested. Not that you shouldn't read it, you should just be sure you have stocked up on the tissues. And Gatorade- it's a good idea to hydrate.
I loved this book. I loved the characters. One of my big complaints about a lot of YA fiction is that it is so superficial, so light with so little meat. This was not like that. These teenagers are smart and aware of the world and their place in it. And perhaps that is part of the fiction, but I'll take it because I far prefer it to some of the characters I've read it other books. There are so many quotes I would love to share with you, but as my Kindle informs me I have thirty-four highlights, I won't. It would be too much and I wouldn't want to ruin the book for you. There are so many things that I can't wait to discuss with someone who has read this. So, Smart Girl, hurry up and read it so we can talk about it!