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Themes

In true YA lit form, The Fault in Our Stars portrays the main character, Hazel, as she takes her first steps toward adulthood—or something like it. Throughout her relationship with Augustus, we really get to see Hazel blossom as she treads the waters of friendships, flirtations, and romantic relationships for the very first time. Here's the thing, though. As much growing up as she does, Hazel misses out on a lot of the normal experiences that other teens have. And most importantly, she's not sure she has a future to look forward to.

Questions About Coming of Age

  1. Is Hazel's development stunted by the fact that she has cancer?
  2. Does Hazel have normal teenage interactions with her parents, or are they changed because of her disease?
  3. By the end of the book, is Hazel still a kid? Or has she made her way into adulthood?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

Even though Hazel has missed out on some developmental landmarks while growing up, she has still been able to grow by thinking through very adult problems.

When Hazel meets Augustus, they both act as a ticket for the other person into the world of normal adolescent courtship.

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