It has come to my understanding that each and every one of you, (well, those who are not in summer school) have been enjoying your summer to the fullest, occupying yourselves with good company, occasional barbeques, days in the sun, and of course, Netflix. Needless to say, it’s best said that I advise that you all enjoy these moments while you can before the end of August, when post-summer depression will hit you harder than a football thrown at you at full speed, aimed at the center of your face.
But regardless, some of us who are not currently occupied with work or anything to distract us from the heatwaves of the summer season are suffering from a condition called boredom and have nothing else to do at the moment. And as much as I hate to say this, I would be included in this category, despite my workaholic attitude. But until fate turns in my favor, read on.
And because of this, I’ve had the time to finally get my hands on a copy of The Fault In Our Stars by John Green and because I have no other ideas to blog about, I thought I’d take a change and dedicate this blog post to a review on the book itself.
Something I’d like to say because I think it’s necessary:
For anything that I’ve been recommended to read, try, watch from others, I’ve noticed that my expectations seem to skyrocket, almost making me believe that whatever I’ve been recommended to (I know this is redundant0 read, try, watch from others, etc) is absolutely perfect and free of flaws. I like to think that if someone recommends something to me, it’ something beyond this world and will make me want to recommend it to someone else as well. Unfortunately, I keep learning that reality does not work that way. Each of us is bound to differ in opinion (hello, human race) and therefore, while someone may recommend something to you to try, it may turn out that you will or will not see it the same way as the recomendee (I hope I used that word right).
Therefore, it’s important for me to point out that my taste is beyond different from anyone else’s. The books I read and what I think of them will be significantly different from what someone else may have in their bookshelf. Having said that, I’ve always been more interested in historical fiction and the most interesting novels to me that I’ve read in my lifetime that I’ve never been able to put down are the following:
1. The Help -Kathryn Stockett
2. Water for Elephants -Sara Gruen
3. A Thousand Splendid Suns -Khaled Hosseini
4. The Kite Runner -Khaled Hosseini
5. Still Alice -Lisa Genova
Having never read any books by John Green before, I decided to actually accomplish one of my New Year’s Resolutions and take a literary risk. And so, I picked up a copy of The Fault In Our Stars.
TFIOS (Thank God there’s an acronym for it considering how much of a mouthful it is to type out #BloggerProbs) follows the romance Hazel Grace, a girl with terminal cancer, and Augustus Waters, a boy she meets who is in remission. (Basically the same line you have probably read on Google before reading this blog post from yours truly. Sigh.)
Being a teen romance novel, there’s many cute moments (that really brought out the inner chick-lit-loving-girl in me and believe it or not, made me blush) and lines here and there that I wouldn’t mind quoting in a tweet or status any time soon (Just a heads up.)
Regardless of my expectations, I’m glad that I took the time out of my life to finally read a book by an author that I had never read any books from and because I wish not to give any spoiler alerts, (and I understand some of you may not be thrilled to have me mention this because everyone who reviews a book says this but…) the ending is just…something you will only find out if you read the book.
I know, I stink at writing book reviews….so…
Overall, I think that if you’re the type of kid that’s into contemp stuff, I say go for it. If you’re a Nicholas Sparks fan and found yourself almost finishing an entire box of Kleenex by yourself when you read (not just watched) The Notebook, I would say that this book is definitely for you.
And if you’re an old soul like myself, with the mental mindset of a person who’s been there done that, you might find yourself flipping a few pages just to finish it.
But don’t rely on my thoughts too much ( I know, defeats the purpose of a blog post that is meant to be a book review…) because you could always be the rare exception (refer to the first couple paragraphs).
But to get to the point…
Something I would definitely recommend is doing some post-reading research on the novel as well. What I found to help me understand and therefore appreciate the novel more was to understand the thought process behind the book itself. The copy of the book which I read contained an actual Q&A section with John Green himself, where people on Tumblr asked him questions about the title, and the overall playout of the characters. Reading the significance behind the title and the meaning behind the entire work of literature that he crafted has made me realize a couple of things.
1. Writing is like a marriage. You will find yourself hating it one minute, only to come back to it and force yourself to work on your writing skills to make it better.
2. There is a reason behind everything. Thought that the curtains were blue because J.K. Rowling didn’t have any other color in mind? Not so much. Authors think about all the details, even when they’re subtle and practically unnoticeable.
3. It takes a lot of time to make something ready to be published
4. Being an author is easy. Being a good author is pretty darn hard.
5. It’s never just you. Unfortunately, as our individualistic culture (Hello, Psychology reference) likes to dictate, you aren’t the only one who deserves credit for writing a novel/essay/story book. You gotta have a crew. People to back you up, tell you what needs to be fixed, what you did right on point. That’s what the credit pages are for. The people who helped you along the way.
6. It is really rare that something comes right off the top of your head (warning: I may sound like I’m repeating 2). All of the characters, events, plot in a novel are formed from past memories that the author may have experienced.
Hope you’re all having a book-tastic summer,