Every once in a while I take a break from reading the end of the world Sci-fi, Apocalyptic stuff I normally read… The first said break was “Brain on Fire” by Susannah Callahan… Which was amazing, and I would recommend it to anyone who has an interest in psychology or writing, it was well done, and the first half of the book was utterly terrifying and I kept imagining myself as having some of her early symptoms… the second half was fascinating, and very detailed, which is the kind of book it was and it was done very well. I would recommend it…. But that is not the book that changed my life this year (A bit of a dramatic statement considering it is only the end of February, but still)…
The Fault in our stars… a review from a 40 year old perspective.
I heard the young girls in the office talking about it… I read the synopsis for the movie on IDMB… when I went to purchase it for my kindle it recommended other books for me like “perks of being a wall flower” and “Eleanor and Park” which I am positive are fantastic books… but YA Romance is not really my thing… I downloaded it anyways… even more convinced now that I would not like it…. I read it with in the weekend.
Rather than give you the rundown on the story line, which can be found on the back of the book cover if you are in the store… or on good reads… amazon… ect. Let me give you a rundown of life changing realizations.
#1 – Everything that I think is important to teach my children would change if they were terminally ill…. That being said… Why am I so focused on those things… I do not want to have to be dying… or confronted with inevitable death of a loved one to see what truly matters… Turning in that essay for english… meeting some girl at the library… Sophomore orientation… practicing the piano… all of these daily nags… constant reminders… parenting things I do would not matter at all… I would want him to play the piano only if he was moved to do so… I would want him to spend more time with that girl at the library… less time on the essay about Romeo and Juliet and more time reading Shakespears other works. I would talk less about cleaning his room and have conversations about art… music… love. I would make breakfast for dinner more often… I would work less…I would take him to the symphonies still… we would still have our drives… and dance in the car like we do… I would talk to him about politics… and not protect him as much. I would treat him differently… try to make his life more full… experience more…. I will work on this.
#2 – I never question what happens next… for example… I do not have the imagination to think of characters outside of the pages of the book I am reading… in the book… Hazel Grace writes her favorite author… she demands answers of the other characters … where did they go… did they marry? did they die? … With books and like so much else in my life… I take what is presented at face value… I do not question why… or how.. and when it is over… I close the book (or these days, shut off the kindle) and forget about those people that I loved, envied or despised almost instantaneously and go back to the routine… shower… coffee… work… dinner… lessons… bed… and though I am moved while I escape in the words… I don’t keep the movement fluid in my life… that is heartbreaking really… because so much of myself… what defines me… had been discovered in a book…. and I demand to know the following… What happened with Hazel Grace, I know she dies… but how.. and who else’s life does she alter with her friendship… How does her mom cope with the loss… does she finish school…. follow her aspirations… and her father… Does he find a way to go on…. Does the blind boy and his girlfriend ever reconcile with each other… even become amicable? does he find love again? What does his adult life look like?
#3 – Support groups are entirely underrated… I should find one… Something outside of this computer … this blog… social media in general. I should belong to something.
#4 – I have an affinity for books that talk about stars… I forget how much I love them… I forget to drive up away from the city and look at them… I will do this more often…. I know that sounds so simple.. but that is why I read the book… simply the title.
#5 – I want to hold the thing that can kill me, and take away its ability to… I want that fear removed from my life. I want a metaphor for my existence.
I never once got that sappy feeling when the kids fell in love… I didn’t weep when Augustus died… I wish I had. I wish I had been moved to tear… I think something is wrong with me. I did weep however when she climbed all of those stairs … because she owed it to Anne Frank… I was moved.
I hated the fact that the author came to America… somewhere in my mind I thought that they were imagining it… it was too much.
I related to the horrible things he said… I related to having a drunk in my life disappoint me. Expectations are a vice…
I loved the book… Read it… share your thoughts.
“Oh, the night makes you a star
And it holds you cold in its arms
You’re the one to whom nobody verses I love you
Unless you say it first
So you lie there holding your breath
And it’s strange how soon you forget
That you’re like stars
They only show up when it’s dark
Cause they don’t know their worth” (Shine – Anna Nalick)