I was initially going to start this with “Dear Mr. John Green (aka Life Ruiner)” but I have lived 20 years before ever reading this wonderful bundle of words, and I am living pretty well right now so it would be wrong to proclaim you as ‘life ruiner’ but maybe a ‘week ruiner’; or when I see the movie my ‘week’ might turn into a month; but I digress.
Dear Mr. John Green (aka Week Ruiner),
Although you might never stumble upon this I think it is important that I write this to you because, through my perusings of the Internet, I have not found a single open letter addressed to you on this subject. Mind you, I was quite disturbed by this. I mean The Fault In Our Stars is a book that after page 100 just completely barriers you in the feels. It’s like goddamn quicksand!
On the off chance that you are reading this let me actually start getting to my point so you don’t run off and do more important things.
I had been hearing (from practically everyone) that this is your best book so far, and since I had previously read Looking For Alaska and adored that, I thought I’d give this a go. Little did I know you were going to make me crumble to the floor in a fetal position: rocking, ugly-crying and listening to Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball” on repeat: “YOU CAME IN LIKE A WRECKING BALL, I NEVER HIT SO HARD IN LOVE! ALL I WANTED WAS TO BREAK YOUR WALLS, ALL YOU EVER DID WAS… WRECK ME!!!”
(Ok, you caught me – that actually didn’t happen. That’s sure what it felt like though) Anyway, back to my point. I started reading and for the first 100 pages I thought the writing was… kiddish. As much as I hate to say this, it seemed below my reading level. But I stuck with it and I totally started to hear Hazel’s voice and it’s suppose to be kiddish in a sense; she is a teenager, of course she is going to talk like that. The way you captured that angsty teenage sound was beautiful. And let me tell you sir, the first things that started giving me teary sensations were the scenes with Hazel and her mom and just how Hazel doesn’t want to be a burden to her parents and she doesn’t want to hold them back and boy did I relate to that. Oh, and guess where I was. You guessed it (probably not, but pretend you did): on a very crowded bus going back home. Imagine being a passenger randomly looking around and then seeing this girl just wiping away random tears, sniffling, while having her face stuffed in a book… Well I don’t have to imagine it because that was me; and you know what? It didn’t stop there? Remember when I said your book was like quicksand? Think of the quicksand as a quicksand of tears – right there on the bus: I stepped into the quicksand and then by the end of the novel (I kid you not) I had to stop reading at points because I couldn’t see the words through my tears. No Shame.
And so in all seriousness, to you Mr. John Green, I just want to say ‘thank you’. Thank you for bringing the lives of Hazel, Gus, Isaac, Hazel’s parents, and of Peter Van Houten’s into my life. The characters became so real to where I wasn’t hearing John Green the-white-male-mid-thirty-year-old-author voice a 16 year old girl who thought a boy was ‘hot’; but rather I started to hear Hazel slowly become Hazel and then just be Hazel. At most times I felt like I was invading the lives of the characters, they sparked life far beyond the page, that at points like Gus’ pre-funeral I felt like I was intruding on a very venerable and true moment that wasn’t meant for me – I wasn’t invited to ‘the literal heart of Jesus’.
So I commend you sir on a wonderfully written novel that cleared my sinuses from crying so much J
Best Wishes and DFTBA,