I have a small confession. I don't read much or broadly. I put it down to my job, which generally involves reading and writing all day. It's exhausting. Why would I want to stare at more words in my leisure time?
I have however, found audiobooks have filled this gap for me. This is how I read The Hunger Games, The Diary of Anne Frank and Game of Thrones. It does have it's drawbacks - it's painfully slow. It probably takes me twice as long to 'read' a book now through listening to it. But the advantages vastly outweigh the disadvantages - sometimes you get different voice actors reading different parts, if someone is supposed to have an irish accent you can hear it and you can do other things while 'reading' - in my case, knitting or crochet of course.
So all this blather is leading up to me telling you about the book I am currenty reading. That's right, currently reading, I haven't even finished it but I need to share because I'm bursting at the seams. I have never felt so compelled to tell the world what I am reading.
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Holey moley. Shit. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.
Is it wrong to review a book before I've finished it? Too bad if it is, I have thoughts and I want to tell you.
It's really good. So so good. Not perfect, because on a couple of occasions I have had to roll my eyes at something Gus has said to Hazel, or Hazel's reaction. But man I am having so many feelings.
Mr Green, what the hell? I wasn't expecting to be moved.
I chose to read this book because I hear about it everywhere, like all over the internets. Well, tumblr anyway. And I recently discovered and became addicted to the vlogbrothers, which has resulted in the development of a bit of a crush on John Green. And Hank Green. Not a crush like, oh I want to marry them, but an affection for their enthusiasm, energy, humour, intelligence and overall outlook on life.
Don't forget to be awesome.
I don't think I've ever heard such a fantastically postive mantra.
So these guys, they're so cool to watch. Tfios is so ridiculously hyped. Did I dare? Obviously I did - I obtained the audiobook. I started 'reading' acutally knowing very little about the book, other than it was about a girl with cancer. That's it. I have no experience with cancer, personally or otherwise. So again, I did not expect to relate to this book as much as I am.
I'm half way through, and listening to it in public has already brought tears to my eyes in three instances. I do not cry at books. Well, the only one I have was To Kill a Mockingbird, but that is a fucking fantastic book. Which has brought me to the conclusion that Tfios is also a fucking fantastic book.
Green's ability to describe the situation, to make me understand exactly how these characters are feeling, is amazing. Ok, so a lot of the dialogue is convoluted. Teenagers do not speak like that. 29 year old women do not speak like that.* But I don't mind, because that's what I like about teenage fiction (my preferred genre for leisure time reading), the confidence and intelligence of these teenages is light years beyond who I was at that stage in my life (and who I am now for that matter) - it's nice to fantasise about perfectly beautiful conversations. Also the relationship between Gus and Hazel is too perfect. And the events are not particularly realistic (I'm referring to the wish business).
But Green and this book get mad props from me because the book has elicited such strong feelings from me. I've lain awake at 2am wanting to listen more, not being able to sleep for needing to know what happens next. I've not read a book that has been able to do that to me in a long while. I'm not sure what the point of the book is yet, but I don't really care if it has a point or not.
Would highly recommend.
So, I guess I'm a nerdfighter** now? Yay!! Are you?
* this one certainly doesn't.
** a NerdFighter is a person who, instead of being made of blood and tissue and organs, is made entirely out of awesome (source). Definitely me.