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My TFiOS review that I found somewhere and decided needed to come back:
Hazel Grace Lancaster is a girl who is dying because of cancer. During a time in her life when no one seems to really understand what she’s going through, she finds a book with an author who speaks directly to her and addresses her thoughts on death with words better than she could find herself. When a boy with a crooked smile and an unusual obsession with metaphorical actions comes into her life like a whirlwind and causes her to fall in love “as you would fall asleep, slowly, and then all at once” she finds herself questioning both what love is and whether it is worth the inevitable pain.
But like all things in life, her relationship with Augustus Waters is more complicated than it might seem at first. The two get a chance to travel to Amsterdam and meet the author of the book that has been such a pivotal part of Hazel’s life, and though the trip ends with unexpected dismay, Hazel begins to see that while “you can’t choose who you hurt in this life… you can choose who hurts you”.
When it comes to John Green, “my thoughts are stars that I cannot fathom into constellations”. Hazel’s story is heartbreaking and real in a way that not many authors can manage to capture. This book made me laugh and then cry within the space of two sentences, and it made me think a lot deeper about the way that I look at the world. Too often we take our lives for granted, and I think that when we fear pain so much that we lock away our feelings, we rob ourselves and the world of our happiness. If I’ve learned anything from John Green, it’s that pain does not decrease our happiness, and death does not render our lives unnecessary.
This book is a good book to read under any circumstances, but most especially if you’ve ever felt like you were alone or that you should not love. Take a chance and get your heart ready to give, because it’ll be shot to pieces when you finish it and look up at the world with different eyes.
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