Jack Urquhart’s Quickie Book Review: The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green

©2012

By Jack A. Urquhart  (170 words)

Who would’ve thought a story about star-crossed teens battling terminal cancer could be such an engaging, not to mention uplifting read? But that is what John Green manages in his lovely novel, The Fault in Our Stars.

His protagonist, 16-year old Hazel Grace Lancaster, who suffers from thyroid cancer, and her love interest, 17 year-old Augustus Waters (an amputee to osteosarcoma) are surely two of the most precocious, appealing, and believable teens to populate fiction in ages. Their wise-beyond-years, and often very funny conversations, keep the novel from slipping into saccharine/maudlin territory—which isn’t to say that Green’s novel doesn’t strum the reader’s heart-strings. It does. In fact, I recommend keeping a box of Kleenex handy.

Green’s memorable novel deals with the very human struggle to accept the reality of death; but more to the point, it addresses how important it is to accept—and make the most of—whatever life deals out. Including love.  Even when the rest of the cards in our hand aren’t pleasant. Or fair.

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About jaurquhart

Jack Andrew Urquhart was born in the American South. Following undergraduate work at the University of Florida, Gainesville, he taught in Florida's public schools. He earned a Master of Arts degree in English, Creative Writing, from the University of Colorado at Boulder, where he was the winner of the Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Award for Fiction (1991). His work has appeared online at Clapboard House Literary Journal, Crazyhorse Literary Journal, and Standards: The International Journal of Multicultural Studies. He is the author of So They Say, a collection of self-contained, inter-connected stories and the short story, They Say You Can Stop Yourself Breathing. Formerly a writing instructor at the University of Colorado’s Writing Program, Mr. Urquhart was, until 2010, a senior analyst for the Judicial Branch of California. He resides in southern California.
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