I just finished it.
Emotions are all swirly now.
I'm glad I had today off so I could go get it and just marathon read it... took me about 5-6 hours.
Has anyone finished? thoughts?
I actually kind of think that Hazel and Isaac might end up together. Not anytime soon, but down the line. Life sometimes works that way. lol
I really wasn't sure about Gus till they started dating, I just had this inkling.I was wondering if the book might end like Haze's fav book. I'm glad he didn't. That would be too meta.
My best friend died when I was 17, so I definitely know how Hazel feels. A wonderful if difficult read. As usual.
I don't know about Hazel and Isaac; there's just something about picturing Hazel with anyone else that feels wrong, especially when I don't think Hazel fits into Isaac's whole mantra of "true love". But I suppose anything is possible... I want John to tell me!
Yeah, me too, about ending like in AIA; I was unsure as to whether it would end in Gus' death or like Van Houten's book did. But to me honest, I didn't think John is that evil. I'm glad that I was right. And yes, that would be so meta.
And I'm sorry about your best friend; I've been lucky enough to never really lose anyone (through death) that was close to me, although I do know a few people who have/had cancer. I can't imagine losing them.
I don't want to risk sounding like Peter Van Houten, and it's so hard not to imagine what will happen next, but the important thing is that there isn't a next. Once, when I asked my English teacher what would happen next, she told me that the story only exists in the words on the page, there is no before and there is no after. Everything that happens to the characters happens in the space that we were given. The glimpse we were given of Hazel's life is what we have to work with.
I respectfully disagree with you and your English teacher. How come it's only okay to hypothesize and wonder about the future of a story while you are reading it? Until it has been read, it is all just in your imagination, anyways! Why should your curiosity end when you find yourself without any new pages?
Everyone's story stops and starts at different points; everyone's existence is purely unique, therefore their interpretations, imageries and experience of fiction should also be unique. For this reason, I really don't believe a story can ever truly have an actual end, so much as a cut-off point where the author feels satisfied to let the story rest.
The world we live in is the culmination of humanity's collective imagination; we have never stopped simply because someone had completed the work that they sought out to do. We have continued it, used it as inspiration and improved upon it; why should a story be any different?
"... it was exciting to live again in an infinite fiction." - John Green, The Fault in Our Stars
i hope i'm not putting words in anyone's mouth, but i think her point was to avoid the distraction of possibly obsessing over what might have been, or impossing one's own view based on these possible events instead of interpreting the author's intention based on what's actually written.
of course all of us following John's Q&A tumblr now know that he doesn't really agree wit the teacher, either. as he values each individual reader's experience as much as his own.
For me, the metaphorical cigarette quote stuck most in my head, though there were SO many.
And honestly, I felt the same with the whole wanting to chase John down bit... I wish there were a way... But at the same time, I almost don't want to know... I love both the complexity and the simplicity... The end (the last letter) broke me the most... He gave her the one thing she wanted. :) :(
I cried so many times during this book, especially towards the end. I probably cried the most when they talked about Isaac losing his sight and the Night of the Broken Trophies. I'm half-blind myself, so it really played into some of my personal fears. It really broke my heart to see Monica leave him; I know I'd be crushed if I was in that situation and someone did that to me and I know I'd never do that to anyone else.
I cried so much when they found out that Augustus had relapsed, and I pretty much cried every moment from there on out. But I think I cried the most during the eulogy (the one with just Isaac and Hazel - not the actual funeral).
There's so much I want clarified, but even if I COULD get John to tell me, I'm not sure I'd like the answers and I'm afraid it would ruin he book for me... :(
Kind of a late reply, but:
Putting aside John's whole "the books belongs to its readers" thing...
1) Obviously, I think, Hazel does end up dying young. This is kind of hinted at when she has the cancer meeting, and she is going to ask what Dr. Maria means when she says that Hazel could live "a long time," but then she says that she's made that mistake before. So I think the answer is no, she's not going to live into adulthood.
2) I would think, yeah, Hazel and Isaac stay friends. They hang out after Augustus dies, and she was kind of friends with him before Augustus dies.
3) I don't think Isaac's cancer comes back. Augustus' did because Osteosarcoma kind of does that sometimes, where the person is NEC and then it roars back up. I think Isaac is actually going to live into adulthood.
4) I think she stops talking to them... I mean, it's very awkward when she goes after Augustus dies.
I think as readers our imaginations' would do the characters more justice. The possibilities are infinite and some infinities are bigger than others ;)
I LOVED the book. I am not sure if I think it is John's best book, but it is really fantastic. It made me cry a lot, and I ended up reading it twice right away and then listening to the audiobook. I would have to say that the audiobook version made me much more emotional than the print version. The reader did a VERY good job.
There are little snippits that stick out at me. Not even the book as a whole, or the whole idea of some things, but the scenes themselves. It's almost as clear as if I'd seen a movie version of the events. I'm not without my complaints, but I will say that reading it more than once helped. I do know teenagers that talk in constant intelligent banter, and I do know that there were probably normal conversations that Hazel had with Agustus that weren't important enough to include. Like, people forget that you can't include every second of two characters lives in a novel, and so think that the intelligent intellectual conversations are the ONLY conversations characters EVER have. But that's probably not true. Probably, the intelligent intellectual conversations were the only ones that happened at a point in the character's lives that would drive the action forward. But, on my first read through, this WAS a bit of a problem for me, and I'm guessing it will be a problem for a lot of adult readers who don't remember or didn't have friends who had conversations like this.
THE REST OF THIS MAY/DOES CONTAIN SPOILERS.
I remember, during my first read through, when Hazel overheard Augustus crying and yelling at his parents right before the trip, the thoughts in my head went something like: "Oh god no, no god no god nononononono oh no," consistently until, during the flight, Hazel started talking about laying on Augustus' shoulder and watching the movie together when I pretty much let the subject drop. And, in fact, my mind was otherwise occupied with the beauty of the book and the descriptions of Amsterdam right up until Gus admitted that his cancer was back. And then I went back to freaking out. I thought that was an amazing thing that the story could distract me from some significant foreshadowing that I recognized at the time.
Also, my favorite line in the book is probably "The beautiful couple is beautiful!"
Also also, the imagery of Hazel having a sleeping dragon beside her who cared about her enough to time his breaths to hers was probably my favorite also. So I drew a picture of that. Which I'm going to include because none of my friends have read the freaking book yet and therefore would not understand. Sorry for the poor quality of the drawing and/or of the picture of the drawing and also the color because the coloring was done in crayon.
I love love love that picture. Also that was one of my favorite parts to. I have a thing for dragons <3