Wednesday, 8 May 2013

day 8 | the fault in this book

I feel horrible.

My stomach is aching and my kneecap is hurting. Earlier, I was breaking into a fever. What in the world did I do to deserve this? I feel like dying. Hopefully writing will ease my mind a bit.]

Let's talk about the most overrated book! I know that people are going to be mad at me for writing about this, because it's a book that a lot of people really enjoyed. So I'll just disclaim beforehand that this is all my opinion and I am not judging you for liking this particular book, it just didn't do it for me and did not live up to my expectations.

Without further ado, let us discuss...

Day 08 - Most Overrated Book

The Fault in our Stars by John Green.

*dodges bullets, tomatoes, and debris*

Haha. I think I've already mentioned how much this book has let me down in my Year-end Book Post. But I think I'm up for expanding my explanation.

You see, John Green is the author of our generation, I will admit. Practically everyone in my news feed in various social networking accounts has reposted a quote from one of his books. And the quotes were nice, I'll give you that. They were so nice that I thought to myself, "I'm going to read a John Green book!" Thus, I picked up Looking for Alaska. I stormed through it and then...zilch. There was no magic. A lot of times I was nitpicking the book instead of getting into the plot. But no mind! Maybe Alaska just isn't for me.

And then, people started talking about The Fault in our Stars, how it changed their life and how everyone and their mother should read it. The plot seemed interesting enough, even if the kids-with-cancer trope has been a bit overdone and is guaranteed to be cheesier than Pizza Hut 3 Cheese Pizza. People liked it! It must be good! So I read it.

Same thing as before, there was no magic. No life changing moment. To be honest, I was looking for the point of the novel about halfway through.

The thing is, this book might have potential been an OK novel for me, had it not been written by John Green. Mr. Green has a nasty habit of putting himself in his characters's shoes. Now the thing is it's not a bad thing to do that -- all authors do it at some point! But the problem with Mr. Green is that he gets into the character's shoes and runs a 10k marathon in them.

Simply saying, there's an abolition of the character because the character becomes Mr. Green himself.

It's difficult to differentiate the characters from one another because they're all witty, insightful, and wise beyond their years. They become too much like Mr. Green and I find it hard to like characters who all sound and talk the same way.

I've actually seen lots of other people having the same critique about this book, and I have seen two "justifications".

1. So what if they all sound smart? Do you want to read a book about stupid people?

No, it's never a bad thing to be smart. I love smart people! I immediately take a liking to characters introduced as geeks or geniuses. So yeah, I want to read a book about smart people. But you have to realize that not everyone is smart. Not everyone is witty and self-deprecating and wistful and melodramatic.

People are all different and that's the beauty of our "peopleness". That we're all different. So if Mr. Green is writing a book about five kids in boarding school, or two kids battling cancer, do they all have to sound the same?

The answer is NO.

2. Of course they sound smart: they're dying! They've become more mature because of all they're experiences!

Now hold up there, son! Since when was it postulated that dying people = witty people. I can see it happening with one kid, who's sort of accepted that he's going to die anyway and there's no reason to angst about it. But the general reaction of children, TEENAGERS, is to be really sad about what is happening to them. No time for introspection.

I mean, he's dying! And you tell 911 "the great love of my life has a malfunctioning tube!" HELLO? Be urgent! You're running on adrenaline -- there's no time to be witty! Also there was this one part in the narration where Hazel was reflecting upon omelets (amirite) while they were going off somewhere. It was a highly misplaced philosophical moment, one of many in this book.

Let's face it -- you're dying. Do you really have to waste time debating the most mundane, useless information?

Ok, I'm done lol. Let me just say, I think John Green is a pretty awesome person, but his writing and his stories are definitely not my cup of tea. I might try reading Will Grayson though, cause David Levithan co-wrote it.

Day 09 - A book you thought you wouldn’t like but ended up loving
Day 10 - Favorite classic book
Day 11 - A book you hated
Day 12 - A book you used to love but don’t anymore
Day 13 - Your favorite writer
Day 14 - Favorite book of your favorite writer
Day 15 - Favorite male character
Day 16 - Favorite female character
Day 17 - Favorite quote from your favorite book
Day 18 - A book that disappointed you
Day 19 - Favorite book turned into a movie
Day 20 - Favorite romance book
Day 21 - Favorite book from your childhood
Day 22 - Favorite book you own
Day 23 - A book you wanted to read for a long time but still haven’t
Day 24 - A book that you wish more people would’ve read
Day 25 - A character who you can relate to the most
Day 26 - A book that changed your opinion about something
Day 27 - The most surprising plot twist or ending
Day 28 - Favorite title
Day 29 - A book everyone hated but you liked
Day 30 - Your favorite book of all time

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