I rate this book 4.5 out of 5 stars.
(Book ratings should really be out of 10. There’s a BIG difference between 4 and 5 stars. Or you should be able to give out half stars. Sometimes a book is really good, but there’s something missing to make it the perfect 5. I like to save the 5’s for my all time favourite books that I would probably read again.)
This book is about a young girl, Hazel Grace, who has an incurable cancer. She needs an oxygen tank to aid her breathing. Anything as simple as standing for too long can make her feel exhausted.
The book circles 3 main locations. The Support Group Centre for the youngsters who are diagnosed with cancer, the cancer patients’ homes and the hospital. We meet a circle of friends who are drawn together because of their illnesses. Isaac, who loses his eyesight. Augustus who loses a leg and Hazel Grace.
The reader is drawn into their circle. You watch their friendships develop and see how they support one another when each are in need. Neither of the patients want to be pitied by other people. They just want to live their lives as best they can like any other healthy person.
We watch how Augustus and Hazel encourage one another to stay positive through the bad times. Hazel Grace describes herself as a grenade. She means that when she dies (which is inevitable), she will destroy all those closest to her.
It’s difficult to write this review without spoiling the book for other readers. It’s a simple story but very well written. It is definately about illness, but it focuses on how each character expresses themselves and deals with their situations. The author writes the story as it is, all the truths and the suffering that the youngsters experience.
I would recommend this book to my friends and it deserves it’s place in the “list of books to read before you die”.