Plot Analysis Of Fault In Our Stars
Let yourself dive into the world of romance with John Green’s ‘The Fault In Our Stars’, reviewed by Thang Nguyen.
When glancing through the book genres in course guide, and my eyes caught “A book that became a movie”. I immediately thought of The Fault in our Stars. Actually in highschool I heard my friends talking enthusiastically about this film, about its tragic love and struggle but not without heartfelt romance, which aroused my curiosity. Also, because I had never read a book of this genre and I regard myself as a rigid person, I decided to give it a try. In such a way, I could challenge myself to see whether I could feel the struggle its characters went through and feel their spectrum of emotions.
The Fault in Our Stars is the sixth novel by author John Green, published in January 2012.
The title is inspired by Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar, in which the nobleman Cassius says to Brutus: ‘The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, / But in ourselves, that we are underlings.’
The Fault in Our Stars is about a teenage girl named Hazel who had thyroid cancer. She went to a cancer support group for teens and met a guy named Augustus, who was in remission from osteosarcoma. At first, they just began as friends, but then they realized there was something more to their friendship.
The latter half of the book is about their relationship and Gus being consumed by cancer. Gus becomes quite a different person than he was when he first met Hazel. Hazel sticks by his side the whole time, even until his death. Although painful, Hazel doesn’t regret the loss that Gus became, but is glad that she loved him anyway.
What I find really really interesting is how the two characters revealed and transformed themselves throughout the course of the novel, showing seemingly contrasting but true nature.
In the first part of the novel, I sensed that Hazel was a really thoughtful and considerate girl – maybe a by-product of her plight. She feared getting close to anyone because she knew that her death would hurt anyone close to her, especially her mother. It made her, as she put it, a “grenade.”
Through her relationship with Augustus, however, Hazel’s perspective changed. She was not sorry she fell in love with him. Instead, she cherished and felt extremely grateful for the time they did have together. The final words of the novel indicate the extent to which Hazel has changed her perspective. What Hazel meant by saying “I do” is that she did not regret her choice to be with Augustus, and she would remember and love Augustus for as long as she lived.
In contrast to the positive transformation of Hazel, I can see Augustus Waters’ outer layers peeling off one by one. On first encounter, he presented himself as a strong, confident, funny, and charming boy. He was convinced that the importance of life is being heroic, leaving a noble legacy in this world. His desire to leave a mark can also be illustrated by his fear of “oblivion”.
Over the course of their relationship, I learnt that he is a very sweet and caring boy who did everything he could to Hazel. However, as the remission progresses more and more seriously, what remained is Gus, a teenage boy now found himself dying from cancer. As he says, “Grief does not change you, Hazel. It reveals you.” Underneath the romantic and grandiosised gestures, Gus is a weak and understandably terrified seventeen-year-old guy.
Although I set out to learn something about love or emotions but the most remarkable lesson I drew from this novel is the fear of oblivion.
Augustus Waters feared oblivion and wanted to be remembered by many. He wanted to be a legend. He didn’t want to die without having made his impact on the world. He said: “I fear oblivion, I fear t like the proverbial blind man who is afraid of the dark”.
It is common among us to fear that one day, no one will remember our existence and we spend time in agony thinking about this scenario. But I think that instead of worrying in a meaningless way, we can actually do something about it. It is simple – love and help other people more. Parents, siblings, friends, neighbors,… are those we can express your love. I think we just need to tell them how ardently we love and treasure them. Also, make their lives worthier of living by doing meaningful things to them.
In the story, Gus confided his love:
Gus, despite his degrading health, accompanied Hazel to Amsterdam and did everything he could to make her life a more fulfilling one.
And the result is: “But, Gus, my love, I cannot tell you how thankful I am for our little infinity. I wouldn’t trade it for the world. You gave me a forever within the numbered days, and I’m grateful.”
We can see that eventually Gus lived forever in Hazel’s mind.
And for me, I hope that in my numbered days, I can be a little infinity of someone.