The Fault in Our Stars
John Green
Contributed by Margherita Wickersham
Chapter 2

Augustus and Hazel take a drive to his house to watch V for Vendetta. On their way, Hazel comments on the jolting quality of Augustas’s driving, where he admits to having failed a driving test. Augustus also mentions that he is an amputee, where he had lost his leg to cancer. The subject of school comes up, and Augustus tells Hazel that he is in high school. Hazel tells him that she takes courses at a community college owing to the amount of time she has spent at home. She begins recounting the details of her cancer saga and explains that her parents pulled her out of school when she was only thirteen years old. This is because she was diagnosed with terminal stage IV thyroid cancer. She also goes into detail about the surgery and chemotherapy to remove tumors in her lungs; and how, at fourteen, she developed pneumonia and would have died if it were not for her doctor. Since then, she has stayed alive due to the help of Phalanxifor, an experimental drug (Green 13).

They arrive at Augustus’s home, where he introduces Hazel to his parents. She realizes that Augustus’s parents called him Gus, and not Augustus. To her, the idea of a single person having two names is good. She realises how the parents of Augustus like “encouraging” him. The little things they tell him or say are part of their strategy to help him get through the terminal illness. Hazel has a liking for Gus, notably because the questions he asks her are about her normal teenage life and interests, and not the cancer she is fighting. Hazel tells Augustus that her favorite book is An Imperial Affliction. In exchange for reading her book, Augustus asks Hazel to read The Price of Dawn. He lends her the book, which is based on the video game he loves most.


This chapter is structured around the first interaction between Hazel and Augustus, from Hazel’s point-of-view. Consequently, the reader sees what is it about Augustus that Hazel finds attractive. Through Augustus’s questions and Hazel’s thoughts, the reader learns what is essential to Hazel. The book, An Imperial Affliction, is one of the most important things in her life because of the manner in which the author seemed to understand her “in weird and impossible ways” (Green 15). Giving Augustus the book to read implies how she is giving him an insight into herself. This chapter also sheds light on the growing relationship between Hazel and Augustus. Their shared experiences of having cancer is not the only commonality that attracts them to one another — each one of them thinks of the other as physically attractive, smart, and charming. Nevertheless, this shared experience makes it possible for them to dispense with the “otherness” barrier that exists between Hazel and her mother, where her mother treats her as though she is different from other teenagers.

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