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This conversation will contain spoilers.  If that bothers you, then go read the book first.  In fact, if you haven’t read the book, this conversation will make no sense at all.

The Scenario

Kathy read The Fault in Our Stars in her 8th grade Language Arts class.  The teacher and the class loved to discuss the issues raised in the book.  When the movie appeared in theaters she regaled her father Jim with stories of her friends taking boxes of Kleenex to the show.

He asked, “Is it THAT sad?”

Kathy replied, “Oh, yes!  It is about cancer and everybody dies.  It is a love story.  My whole class loved the book!”

“You’re kidding.  It sounds literally tragic, Shakespearean, in fact.”

“How’d you guess?  The title is a quote from Shakespeare.”

“Is it the star-crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet?”

“A pair of star-cross’d lovers take their life;
Whose misadventured piteous overthrows
Do with their death bury their parents’ strife.”

–Act 1, Prologue, Romeo and Juliet

Kathy, “No.”

“This is the excellent foppery of the world, that,
when we are sick in fortune,–often the surfeit
of our own behavior,–we make guilty of our
disasters the sun, the moon, and the stars: as
if we were villains by necessity; fools by
heavenly compulsion; knaves, thieves, and
treachers, by spherical predominance;”

–Act 1, Scene 2, King Lear

Kathy grinned, “No.  But close.”

Jim clapped, “Ah, you said it was a love story!”

“That I should love a bright particular star
And think to wed it, he is so above me:
In his bright radiance and collateral light
Must I be comforted, not in his sphere.”

–Act 1, Scene 1, All’s Well That Ends Well

“Love and Death in the opening scene!”, cheered Jim.

“Here, just read the book for Pete’s sake.”, groaned Kathy.

————–<two days pass>————–

Jim commented, “Good book!”

Kathy replied, “I was worried you wouldn’t like it.  Honest!  Did you cry?”

“No comment.”

“You cried.  What part got you the most?”

“I don’t know.  What part got you the most?

“You first.”

“No, you read the book first, so you go first.”

“That’s a lame reason.  But, I’ll go first, anyway.”, said Kathy.

<As with real conversations and TV episodes, rarely do you get the whole experience in one setting.  Also, the author of this fictional conversation has a real job and a time-consuming schedule.  He will pick up where he left off next time.  Read Part II.>

*John Green, The Fault in Our Stars, Dutton Books, New York, NY, 2012.
Republished from the Ratio Christi Blog with permission.