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I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once.—Hazel Lancaster
The Fault in Our Stars is the fourth solo novel by author John Green, released on January 10th, 2012 . The book focuses on a girl named Hazel Grace Lancaster, who is suffering from terminal cancer and is forced by her parents to attend a support group, where she meets Augustus Waters, a boy with cancer.
Before the book was released, it reached #1 on the Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble bestseller lists in June 2011, shortly after its title was announced. Barnes & Noble had accidentally released more than a thousand copies prematurely, however, the fandom vowed not to spoil the book for those who had not received copies.
A password protected blog where John answers questions about TFIOS is currently available here for anyone who has finished reading the book, and only for people who have finished the book. The password is the last word of the acknowledgments.
Tropes present in The Fault In Our Stars include:
- A Good Name for a Rock Band: The Hectic Glow, a band "so beautifully underground that they don't even exist".
- Artificial Limbs: Augustus has a prosthetic leg due to his osteosarcoma.
- Bald Women: Augustus compares Hazel to Natalie Portman due to her hair.
- The Big Damn Kiss: Hazel and Augustus, in front of a crowd of tourists, in the Anne Frank house.
- Black Comedy: Hazel and Augustus's jokes about how Augustus is so handsome he literally blinded Isaac and "took Hazel's breath away." Also, Isaac's eulogy for Augustus at the "prefuneral."
- Bavarian Fire Drill: When Monica's mom finds Gus, Hazel, and Issac egging her daughter's car.
- Broken Pedestal: Peter Van Houten, for Augustus and Hazel.
- Danger Takes a Backseat: Peter Van Houten scares Hazel when he pops up in the back of her parents' van.
- Dead Man Writing: Hazel and Lidewij track down Augustus' last letter to Van Houten, which turns out not to be the sequel to "An Imperial Affliction" but his eulogy for Hazel.
- Disabled Love Interest: Augustus in Hazel's view, see Artificial Limbs above.
- Disabled Snarker: Both Hazel and Augustus are pretty talented snarkers.
- Isaac seems to be an example of this as well, especially after his surgery.
- Fictional Counterpart: The Genie Foundation, which grants wishes to cancer patients. Also, Free Catch All (Craigslist).
- Fictional Document: "An Imperial Affliction".
- Glass Eye: Isaac has one, at first.
- Anna's mother in "An Imperial Affliction".
- Ill Girl: Hazel was diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 13, with tumors in her lungs.
- Killed Mid-Sentence: Anna in An Imperial Affliction, which ends right in the middle of a
- Literary Allusion Title: The title refers to a line from William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar: "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings."
- Manic Pixie Dream Girl: played straight with Augustus Waters as a gender-inverted example, not only drawing Hazel Grace out of her slump but helping her realize her dreams before the end.
- Nerds Are Sexy: One of Augustus's main reasons for pursuing Hazel.
- More like "Extremely Philosophical People" are sexy.
- Premature Eulogy: for Augustus and Hazel.
- Reclusive Artist: Peter Van Houten, much to Hazel's dismay.
- Refuge in Audacity: Gus' speech to Monica's mom after she catches him, Hazel and Isaac egging Monica's car, actually getting her to leave them alone to finish their vandalism.
"Ma'am, your daughter's car has just been deservedly egged by a blind man. Please close the door and go back inside or we'll be forced to call the police.
- So Beautiful It's a Curse: Played for laughs in this exchange.
Augustus: But can I help my own deadly beauty?
Hazel: You cannot.
Augustus: It is my burden, this beautiful face.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: Hazel refers to Augustus and herself as this several times, most notably in her eulogy at the prefuneral.
- Shout-Out: At one point Augustus muses that it would be awesome to fly in a super fast jet that could follow the sun; John's admitted to being a fan of Phineas and Ferb, and this was the plot of their first special.
Hazel mentions that you say thank you a lot in a hospital(think ocular impairment) and an art museum where a Himalayan creature of his affection is employed(look over there!).
- Stealth Pun: The "blinding" of Isaac
- Take That: When Hazel describes having sex with Augustus for the first time, she mentions that "no headboards were broken".
- The Alcoholic: Peter Van Houten
- Too Good for This Sinful Earth: Kind of played straight, kind of subverted, with Augustus.
- Mostly played straight at the funeral.
- The Fault in Our Stars kind of deconstructs the majority of illness tropes.
- Augustus even alludes to this on page 173. "Like, are you familiar with the trope of the stoic and determined cancer victim who heroically fights her cancer with inhuman strength and never complains or stops smiling even at the very end, etcetera?"
- "According to the conventions of this genre, he kept his sense of humor until the end, did not for a moment waiver in his courage, and his spirit soared like an indomitable eagle until the world itself could not contain his joyous soul. But this was the truth..."
- Mostly played straight at the funeral.