Battling Illnesses In The Fault In Our Stars

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Richard Puz, the American author, once said, “Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.” One’s inevitable death, due to sickness, will be mourned by loved ones, but the memories that have formed throughout that relationship will remain forever. In his novel, The Fault in Our Stars, John Green presents two teenagers developing a relationship, while both battling illnesses of their own. John Green develops the Romance genre in his novel, The Fault in Our Stars, by utilizing elements that help readers connect with the characters.

Green demonstrates the development of the characters, as two star-crossed lovers that are both dealing with terminal illnesses. To begin, the relationship begins as two teenagers that go to a youth group together. To illustrate, Hazel went to a youth group for teenagers dealing with illnesses, and after a discussion, she has introduced a boy named Augustus, who had also been dealing with an illness (The Fault in Our Stars 14-15). This is the start of the relationship between the main hero and heroine. They are two teenagers that have made the acquaintance of each other, both dealing with the illnesses they have. Furthermore, the relationship between Hazel and Augustus has further developed into an affectionate relationship. To illustrate, Augustus knew that Hazel wanted to visit Amsterdam, so he used his “make-a-wish” to fly Hazel and himself to Amsterdam, where they had gone a romantic lunch date (The Fault in Our Stars 162). The relationship between the two friends had further developed into an affectionate relationship. Along with the development of this relationship, Hazel experiences emotional backlash from it. To illustrate, she has doubts on whether she is good enough for Gus, as well as her sickness being a burden to the ones around her, and she tells her parents that she just wants to be alone, and not negatively affect the ones around her (The British Journal 2). The growing relationship helps Hazel grow emotionally so that she is able to cope with the emotional stresses that she has to face. Therefore, it is through the development of the characters, both dealing with illnesses, that develops the romance genre.

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In addition to the development of characters, the style in which Green wrote this novel helps readers relate to the characters. Readers are able to relate to the emotions of the characters in the novel. To illustrate, Hazel and Augustus are both appealing to readers through their sense of humour and their courage, but behind this, they both have their desires to protect their families (The Guardian, AnushlaO 1). Both being victim of illness, Hazel and Augustus both feel like they are burdens to their families. They try to make sure that their personal problems do not affect their loved ones, which is a feeling that readers can relate back to. In addition, readers can also relate to the experiences the characters face in the novel. When Augustus had taken Hazel to his home to have dinner with his parents, she felt special, but only until she thought that he brought home a new girl every night (The Fault in Our Stars 27). Augustus made Hazel feel special, but she thought that this was the way he treated all girls. Often times, people who are insecure will act carefully when they have affectionate feelings for another person, and letting insecurities, such as her sickness, affect the way she continues the relationship with Augustus. Above all, the style in which the story is written revolves around the development of the relationship between Hazel and Augustus. While Hazel and Augustus were having a casual discussion about poetry, Augustus surprisingly confesses his love for Hazel (The Fault in Our Stars 153). Despite being young and ill, Augustus desires to be with Hazel, knowing that the moment of their death is inevitable. Therefore, Green has written his novel in a style that enables readers to relate to the characters.

In conjunction with the style the novel is written, another element used is how the storyline unfolds, as the couple continuously develops their romance, while battling illnesses. The story begins with two teenagers meeting each other in a youth group. To illustrate, Hazel attends a youth group, along with other victims of illnesses, where she makes the acquaintance of Augustus Waiters, also another victim of illness (The Fault in Our Stars 6). They are both teenagers that are currently dealing with their sicknesses, and they continue their friendship, supporting each other in their illnesses. Their relationship has developed into an affectionate one, but they had faced a severe problem. The story had unfolded into two people falling in love, one of whom has cancer (The Guardian, Milo 1). When Hazel and Augustus are enjoying their trip in Amsterdam, Augustus tells Hazels that he had been scanned for a severe case of cancer (The Fault in Our Stars 214). The real battle with cancer had begun, as Augustus’ case of cancer is now very severe. Furthermore, after a long battle with cancer, the problem between the couple had been resolved. To illustrate, Augustus had dies shortly after his prefuneral, when cancer had stopped his heart (The Fault in Our Stars 261). Although this is not the outcome that they had wished for, Augustus’ long battle with cancer had ended with his death. Therefore, the unfolding of Hazel and Augustus’ relationship, as well as their battle with cancer, is how Green incorporated the element of storyline in his novel.

Green utilized elements that helped connect the reader with the characters, as well as showing the struggles of illnesses and death. No matter the obstacles or struggles that may occur, Green shows that if a couple truly loves each other, they will overcome those obstacles.

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