University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
My Choice Is Reading
By reading books, people can learn how to get through problems in their own lives by relating to characters. Readers can see what characters did to get out of bad situations, and what they learned from them. In Uglies by Scott Westerfield the reader grasps that what someone looks like on the outside doesn’t matter, and it is what is on the inside that counts. The Fault In Our Stars and Looking For Alaska by John Green both deal with death at a young age and losing loved ones. Love is a serious topic in all of these books, and an important lesson learned is that love is blind.
The Fault In Our Stars is a love story between Hazel and Augustus who are both battling cancer at the same time. They meet at a cancer support group and fall in love, but then the cancer in Augustus comes back and ends up killing him. John Green does a considerable writing job in making whoever reads the book fall in love with both characters. That is why it is extremely sad in the end because when Gus dies, the reader undergoes the same sadness that Hazel has.
Loosing a loved one is also a theme in Looking For Alaska. Miles decides to go to a boarding school, and while there, he makes friends for the first time. More importantly though, he meets Alaska whom he loves from the first moment he saw her. Alaska already has a boyfriend and she will not cheat, but she lugubriously reflected a secret love for him. Unfortunately she perishes in a car crash so their relationship will always be a great perhaps. Miles’ love story is a little different than Hazel’s in a way that Hazel got to really experience the love before it was torn, whereas Miles’ was an unexplored mystery. People everywhere love differently like in the books by John Green, but both stories are similar because the characters have to deal with the loss of a loved one. Everybody deals with losing loved ones in different ways.
In Looking For Alaska the whole book is written in the parts before and after Alaska’s death. This shows that Miles is unable to separate his own life from her death. In The Fault In Our Stars Hazel deals with the death of Augustus quite differently. She tells her story building up to his death, and after his death skips to the present day to say that even though Gus is gone, she still loves him. Hazel was able to separate her life from his death in a way Miles was not able to with Alaska, while still indicating that their love survived even his death.
Looking For Alaska deals with a lot of growing up. Miles and his friends throughout the whole book are trying to grow up to be who they want to be. In The Fault In Our Stars Hazel has to find ways to cope with the imminence of her own death, and rather than growing up she has to deal with the process of dying. Hazel has to find her place in death while Miles has to find his place in life. In the book Uglies the theme of growing up to be who you want to be is very important.
Scott Westerfield’s book Uglies is a dystopian book much like Maze Runner or Hunger Games. In Tally’s world people live by what they look like. At the age of 16 people get the transformation to turn them into a pretty from an ugly. When someone gets the pretty operation they look like everybody else, but they also get their brain changed. Tally is forced to grow up and get the operation but she rebels and runs away. Tally finally finds out who she is and who she loves just by being who she wants to be. This book deals with he subject of appearance, which is relevant to society today. Everybody thinks that in order to be happy, that you have to be perfect looking. This book teaches the reader that it is what is on the inside that counts. Just like in The Fault In Our Stars, Hazel does not think anybody will love her because she is dying of cancer. Then Gus does. This deals with the saying that love is blind. When someone loves someone they can look past all the flaws and only see perfection. All three of the books read deal with this topic.
It is so important to read. Reading makes the reader fall in love, cry, and get angry or excited. Books open people up to reoccurring themes and make them learn really valuable lessons. The books The Fault In Our Stars, Looking For Alaska and Uglies all relate in different ways, and all deal with very diverse content. The most important lesson learned from these books is to be whom you want and to love unconditionally.