“The Fault in Our Stars,” by John Green, is a novel about two teenagers who both have cancer, and find comfort from their disease and the people surrounding them in each other’s arms, in literature, and in adventure. While there are times that Green will have you laughing, or smiling, there are also times where he will have you crying.
The main idea of the book is to look at the world from a different point of view. So often we view people with terminal illness as weak, and unable to live life like anyone else. They receive special treatment whether they want it or not. This book challenges the way we should view cancer patients and gives an inside look to what it’s really like to have a disease through a personal connection to not only the main characters, but their relationship to each other.
Green employs literary techniques that are meant to make the reader uncomfortable, because in that state you can begin to question yourself. In his disclaimer in the beginning of the book, Green reminds readers that this is a made up story, that we shouldn’t get attached to it because it’s not real. But in the end, that’s exactly what he does. He gets us attached.
Readers can connect with this book because Green makes the characters real. These characters are, in essence, people you could experience in real life. Hazel’s struggles with how people perceive her and her relationship with Augustus, being in love, yet knowing that in the end it may never work out.
Through the use of the main characters, Green makes readers feel comfortable with asking questions about cancer, love, literature, and a range of other things that may not be appropriate otherwise. Hazel is real. She doesn’t mess around. And it is through her that the freedom in this novel is developed.