Friday, 13 December 2013

finding fault with the fault in our stars:


"Our city has a rich history, even though many tourists are only wanting to see the Red Light District...Some tourists think Amsterdam is the city of sin, but in trust it is a city of freedom. And in freedom, most people find sin."


Oh dear. I had heard so many good things about this book, I remember being told about it when I was in Amsterdam and thinking that it was definitely a book I'd like to read. And then I ended up watching a video of a girl from Leiden teaching people how to pronounce the Dutch names in the book and thinking, yeah, I should read this book. And then I read thousands of good blogger reviews and then I saw a lovely review by tea.three.sugars and finally ended up buying it. And then finally reading it, a lot lot later.

I wanted to love it. I really did. But I didn't. Don't get me wrong. I didn't hate it. But I doubt I'd ever read it again. I just didn't connect with Hazel at all, and I found her relationship unbelievable. The book seemed like a massive cliché, I feel like there are already about three million books in the world that have their base in a teenage girl who doesn't really have many friends, but she does have a favourite book and her parents are alright and she loves this one book a lot, and oh yeah, she falls in love with a bloke and then PLOT TWIST. I know you're supposed to think she's intelligent and a little quirky, but she just felt like a smartarse to me. I felt like I'd read this book a thousand times before I'd even started going through it. 

You only have to read my blog for a second to know that I bang on about the Dutch and living in Holland all the sodding time, but I mean, John Green was paid to live in Amsterdam for a while to research this book, and the best he could come up with was that the Dutch were friendly, that there were nice canal houses and that Jordaan had an alright restaurant. There is so much more to Amsterdam than that. John Green was completely unable to capture the true magic of that city and just how wonderful it is (but maybe I'm just a little too in love with it?). Also, every sodding tourist guide in the world on the Netherlands has the phrase "Dutch isn't so much a language but an ailment of the throat" - I agree, but I felt like John Green should have been able to come up with a new way of putting it instead of just repeating that same phrase. 

I'll definitely be giving John Green's other books a go, but I think this one is off to the charity shop. What did you think of the Fault in Our Stars?

8 comments:

  1. Never read it and it doesn't actually appeal to me that much, I felt like I should read it 'cos everyone is at the moment but to be honestg i expected it to be how you just described it! Def won't be giving it a go now xx

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  2. I don't really get the John Green fuss either. I don't have anything bad to say about the book, but I didn't think it was anything amazing or ground-breaking either. I've read Looking for Alaska too and felt the same about that.

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  3. This is the book review I never got around to writing. I didn't hate it, but I didn't enjoy it at all and I gave it to a friend to read and told her to pass it along as I would never read it again. Might be nice for a 13 year old cancer patient, but it was a bit to bland for me. I didn't cry and I ALWAYS cry xxxx

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  4. I don't think I was ever that clinched teenage girl who loved one book obsessively, so it wouldn't appeal to me on that front. I would probably be irked by the descriptions of Amsterdam from what you've said. Heck, the Jordaan is packed with awesome restaurants for a start!!

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  5. I was going to buy this after Christmas but I'll think again! Good review :) it's nice to read a practical review that doesn't just blow sunshine at an average book x

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  6. Ahh it's a shame you didn't enjoy it lovely, but when it comes to books you can only form your own view, no matter how good or bad everyone else says it may be! I felt the same about Hazel at times, I sometimes felt annoyed by her attitude or the things she said. I think what I enjoyed the most was the fresh perspective on terminal illness, supposedly seeing it through the sufferer's eyes. I think depending on your life experiences you can take less or more out of a book about certain things - having witnessed and been there through the terminal illness of a loved one, I think that made me more involved in the book than I would have been had I not been through that. But when I read the blurb and heard about the book I was very dubious, and I know that pre said experiences I wouldn't have enjoyed or probably understood the book and it wouldn't have reached me in the way it did. I've never been to Amsterdam but the book made me want to visit, so I hope that's some consolation to your loved place :) xxx

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    1. P.s. Thank you for linking me :) xxx

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