Cover Me: The cover is pretty boring. The only thing of interest is the way the blurbs are written. They are mashed around the title which gives it something interesting in a land of blah. Not that I have a better idea for a book about teenagers with cancer. Really, the only important thing is the author’s name. John Green is a popular stand out in the Young Adult field. That’s pretty much all this cover needed for people to pick it up.
Concept: Hazel is terminal. Because of a new drug, she’s lasted longer than anyone thought she would. Life is only living until the final day arrives. That is until Augustus comes into her life at a cancer support group. Hazel then has a chance to experience how to really live.
This concept couldn’t sound more like a downer if it tried. I have to admit, I waited to read this book because it sounded sad. The reasons I finally gave in is because of the great reviews and John Green is a master at creating fantastic characters. This is proven, without a doubt, in this book.
The Peeps: The characters are what make this book. I was madly in love with all of them. The wit in their conversation, relationships with each other, and how they handle their disease is beyond anything I could’ve imagined this book to be. In a world that could be incredibly sad, these characters are funny and give an interesting look into having cancer. As I tried to rattle on and on and on about this book to Hubs, I realized you really have to read it to get it. You have to get into their heads to understand how they cope in a battle with themselves.
The Ending (spoiler alert!): The spoiler alert here is the fact I ended up a weeping mess at the end. I’ve never had a book wreck me like this one. (Well, maybe there was #41 of Sweet Valley High when I was in 6th grade where Regina died from a drug overdose. I was pretty upset about that one.) While I prepared to lose our main character Hazel, it is actually Augustus who dies. That’s not the sad part because you expect to lose people, but it’s the way he goes. The sadness of watching someone you love die. Hazel doesn’t fall apart anything like I do. I think that’s what made me sad. She makes it to the end, but that doesn’t mean she’s going to survive. She’s terminal. She will die sometime soon no matter how hard I wish her a life where she feels that kind of love again. Does this tirade show you anything about how much I loved them?
John Green is a master of character development. I thought this when I read Paper Towns. If I remember correctly, I wasn’t crazy about the ending of that one. The Fault In Our Stars well exceeds any expectations I might have had from the first page to the very last one.
What I Cooked Up: I finished this book a month ago and it took me this long to get the baked good together. There’s a responsibility when you have a book this good to make sure you don’t flub it up on a food representation. Instead of focusing on the sad in this book, I picked the theme of champagne. It’s one of the new and exciting experiences Gus and Hazel enjoy together. The fun of the bubbles tickling their mouths utterly charmed me. I made a champagne cake with a whipped cream frosting. I attempted a new frosting technique of watercolor in a color scheme of a sunrise and a new day dawning. Not so sure I did the book justice with this cake, but hopefully I did with the review.
Discuss: What did you think of the book? Were you afraid to read it like I was? What did you find the most inspiring? Please tell me your thoughts.