Wednesday, February 19, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: THIS STAR WON'T GO OUT: THE LIFE AND WORDS OF ESTHER GRACE EARL BY: ESTHER EARL, LORI EARL, WAYNE EARL, AND JOHN GREEN

Book: This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl
Authors: Esther Earl, Lori Earl, Wayne Earl, and John Green

Publisher: Dutton Juvenile, 2014

Pages: 431 pages

Rating: *****/5 stars!




Favourite Quote:

“The measure of a friendship is not its physicality but its significance. Good friendships, online or off, urge us toward empathy; they give us comfort and also pull us out of the prisons of our selves.” Esther Earl.

Synopsis:

For those of you who do not know about Esther Earl, she was a nerdfighter (people who decrease world suck) and Harry Potter fan who was a friend of John Green's. John Green had made a couple of videos about Esther and that is how I got to know her or her internet persona, crazycrayon. I watched her YouTube Videos and followed her on Twitter all the while, she was battling cancer. Esther helped campaign for the Harry Potter Alliance to win money and brought two communities together. Unfortunately, Esther lost her battle to cancer in 2010 and her death impacted the nerdfighter community in such a way that people who had never even talked to her or interacted with her were so impacted by her passing. This Star Won't Go Out is a book with writings from her journals, blogs, video transcripts, writings from John Green, her parents, and her friends.

Review:

The books begins by an introduction from John Green about how his friendship with Esther began and just how much she impacted him. Reading about John Green a huge author and YouTuber caring about one of his teenage fans in such an open and honest way just made me feel that much more respect for John Green. As much as John Green inspired Esther, the reader begins to realize how much Esther inspired John Green. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green was a story that John Green had been wanting to write  but it wasn't until he met Esther that he was actually inspired to write it. While the book is not about Esther, it was inspired by her and that is huge, a sixteen year-old girl inspired one of the bestselling books in the last few years. Amazing.

After the introduction there are excerpts from Esther's parents, Esther's journal's, and updates from her parent's blog while Esther battled cancer. Esther had thyroid cancer which, like cancer tends to do, spreads to other areas of the body, in Esther's case, her lungs. She required oxygen and the BiPap machine to breathe properly. Despite her medical condition, she still managed to write inspirational words, love passionately, care abundantly, and geek out over the best things like Harry Potter. I found it so cool how she was able to create meaningful friendship with her online group called Cattitude and how honest they were with each other.

I cried a lot during this book mainly because the people around Esther loved her unconditionally and she loved them right back. Like with most books about people battling cancer, I often think about what it would be like if I had cancer (not that I wish to have it but when reading, it is hard to not think about) and I just can't see my sister caring at all or anyone writing blog posts updating people about my condition. I think that what Esther had, the kind of love that surrounded her, was beautiful in every aspect. 

One of my dearest friends has a best friend who is battling cancer. I grew up knowing her family (I was in the same grade as her younger cousins) and knowing the strength of this girl and what she has gone through is truly remarkable. Reading about Esther only gave me a small insight into the medical aspect of chemotherapy but it showed me the emotional aspects of battling cancer. I think that cancer is one of the worst things in the world but in the midst of battling the fight against it, true beauty is found in the love that people have for each other.

Have you read This Star Won't Go out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl, if so, what did you think? 

DFTBA,
Tara 

2 comments:

  1. I seriously almost cried just reading your review. I've heard a lot about Esther and her book, but I haven't read it yet and it's definitely on my TBR. Beautiful review! Thank you for sharing!

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  2. Thank-you for the positive comments on this book review. Esther truly impacted a lot of people in such a short amount of time. I highly recommend reading her book.

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