Review: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Title: The Fault in Our Stars
Author: John Green
Series: None
Publisher: Dutton Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
Publication Date: January 10, 2012
Pages: 313
Format/Source: Hardback/Purchased
Age Group/Genre:  Young Adult/Contemporary

     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.  (From Goodreads.)

A Little Background…

I LOVE John Green.  So let me just get that out there before I talk about this book.  I’ve read several of his books and my favorites before reading The Fault in Our Stars were Paper Towns and Will Grayson, Will Grayson.

But before I loved his books, I loved the vlogs he and his brother, Hank, made (and continue to make).  Seriously, these guys are funny, smart, and my kind of nerdy.  Check out their YouTube site, Vlogbrothers, and if you’re not sure where to start, search for “Fitness for Nerds” and “Make-Up Tutorial: Katniss Everdeen Look,” and you’ll find the first two videos of theirs that I ever watched, which still happen to be some of my favorite videos.

My Thoughts…

My love for John, of course, had an affect on my thoughts on this book.  But don’t worry – if I hadn’t liked it I wouldn’t say that I had just because I love John Green.  But guess what – I loved it!

This book is so beautifully written, as are all of John’s books.  It’s kind of funny, actually, because normally when I read books that I am in awe of, I’m like, “Man, I wish I had come up with that idea,” and I kind of get envious. But with John’s writing, I just kind of recognize that I will never write the way he does.  I think it’s something that you’re born with.  Some people just know how to play the piano.  Some can come up with fantastically epic stories about a boy wizard.  And some can just write one sentence that makes you chuckle, then get teary eyed, then just sit back and stare as your mouth falls open at the beauty of the arrangement of the words.  I’m not saying he doesn’t work hard at it – I’m just saying the man has a gift.

For example, here are a few of my favorite quotes (some are serious, some are funny, all are awesome):

“Finally, I decided that the proper strategy was to stare back.  Boys do not have a monopoly on the Staring Business, after all.”

“And then the line was quiet but not dead.  I almost felt like he was there in my room with me, but in a way it was better, like I was not in my room and he was not in his, but instead we were together in some invisible and tenuous third space that could only be visited on the phone.”

“As he read, I fell in love the way you fall asleep:  slowly, and then all at once.”

“The weird thing about houses is that they almost always look like nothing is happening inside of them, even though they contain most of our lives.”

“My thoughts are stars I can’t fathom into constellations.”
(Okay, now I’m new at this, so I’m not sure if that is too much to quote.  I don’t want to get in trouble with John or Dutton Books or anything, so anyone, please let me know if there is a kind of limit, whether written or unwritten, as to how many quotes we can post…)
Beautiful, right?  John’s books are full of phrases like these.  But on to other things…  I really connected with the characters.  I loved Hazel and Augustus’s humor.  It was sarcastic and often unsettling for some of the other characters, but it was how they needed to be to keep themselves from drowning in the reality of their situation.

Some of the side characters were really brilliant, as well.  Like Isaac, and Hazel’s parents, and Peter Van Houten, the author of Hazel’s favorite novel. Peter Van Houten wrote a really beautiful letter in the middle of the book, which made me understand why Hazel loved him and his writing.  And, of course, the letter was actually written by John Green, which just makes me love him more.  (Am I gushing yet?  I’m gushing, aren’t I?  Well, that’s what happens when I read a book like this one.)


I don’t want to go into too much more, because I don’t like spoilers.  But I will say that even though I LOVED this book, I still think that Paper Towns and Will Grayson, Will Grayson are even with it as far as my favorite John Green books go.  This book was different than John’s other books, but it still very much had his stamp on it.  By that I mean that if I had opened it up and read it and not known who the author was, I would have been able to recognize John’s eloquent writing and wonderful humor within the first couple of paragraphs.

And, if you weren’t sure yet, here’s my rating for The Fault in Our Stars:

Five big stars.  A wonderful read, and something that I will most definitely pick up again and again.

Find it:  Goodreads │ Amazon │ Penguin Group

If you like this book, you should try:  Looking for Alaska │ Paper Towns

Disclosure:  I purchased this book myself.  I was not compensated in any way for this review.  


  1. Hanna

    January 16, 2012 at 6:13 pm

    I want this so, so badly. It's on all the blogs at the minute but I've only actually started paying attention. Nothing like being behind the times, is there? I THOUGHT I knew what it was about and wasn't interested, so I pretty much just skimmed them all but now it turns out that I was wrong and now I'm dying to get my grubby paws on a copy! Does that even make sense?

    I love the quotes you posted. I reckon you're fine with quoting that many. There is a limit, but it's a quite high percentage of the book and you're nowhere near that. I've posted much more and not got into trouble :)

  2. Bittner

    January 23, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    That was a great review Andrea!

    – by the way I meant to tell you that I had a dream on Saturday that we got into this huge fight because I was leaving inappropriate comments on your blog! So I'll do my best to make sure my comments remain respectful! –

    It was very different then some of your reviews on your other site because it had more of your humor and personality in it.

    I don't think there is a written limit on how many quotes you are allowed to include in your blog. I usually go for the most powerful one, but I think it is just up to each persons preference.

    Also, your blog posts aren't showing up in my google reader. I felt bad when you mentioned this post on Saturday and I hadn't read it. But I cleaned out my google reader today and it wasn't there. So I'm sorry it took so long for me to comment on it.

  3. LHughes

    January 28, 2012 at 7:33 pm

    The only thing I've read by John Green was Looking for Alaska, which I didn't really like. It reminded me of Catcher in the Rye, which I also didn't like.

    But based on your stellar review here, and other great reviews, I think I'm going to give The Fault in Our Stars a shot. The premise sounds lovely, and your review was very persuasive :)

    Lauren @ Hughes Reviews

  4. handiangel

    February 23, 2013 at 10:09 am

    I've gone back and read a couple of reviews for TFiOS and it is just making me want to read it again! I think he summed up his own book: "Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal[…]". Great review!

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