The Fault in Our Stars

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The Fault in Our Stars Chapter 16 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Hazel explains a typical day with Augustus in the late stages of his cancer. She goes over to his house after he has eaten and puked his breakfast. He is no longer muscular and gorgeous, but he still smiles and smokes his unlit cigarettes, and his eyes are still alive.
Although Augustus’ body is failing, he maintains his personality, as shown though his smile and eyes. The cigarette suggests that he is continuing to struggle with the fear of his cancer.
Themes
Life and Death Theme Icon
Being Different Theme Icon
Augustus tells Hazel he wants to write her a sequel to An Imperial Affliction, but he is too tired all of the time. Hazel says it is okay, he can just tell it to her. Hazel asks about Anna’s mom, but Augustus says he hasn't figured it out yet. Hazel notices his parents are constantly staring at him. Augustus tells Hazel he wants to write a memoir so he will survive in the minds and hearts of “an adoring public”. Hazel asks why he needs the minds and hearts of others when he has her heart.
Augustus wants Hazel to have the answers about what will happen to her family after she dies, but he does not know the answer for the same reason as Hazel—they are still living. Augustus' parents constant stares show the depth of their sorrow and fear of losing him. Augustus is still attached to the idea of being remembered after death, but Hazel’s change in perspective lets her see that he will live on through those who love him, and she feels like that is enough.
Themes
Life and Death Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Religion and Philosophy Theme Icon
After lunch, Hazel and Augustus go into the back yard. Augustus says he wishes he had Hazel’s childhood swing set they’d given away. He says that his nostalgia is so strong he is missing a swing set he never used. Hazel says that nostalgia is a side effect of cancer, but Augustus corrects her and says it's a side effect of dying. He grabs her hand and says it is a good life.
Augustus’ desire to have the swing set back shows that now faced with death he longs for his childhood—when he was healthy. Augustus’ comment about dying suggests that he knows he will not survive, but his comment while holding Hazel’s hand shows that he doesn't regret the life he's lived.
Themes
Coming of Age Theme Icon
Life and Death Theme Icon
Religion and Philosophy Theme Icon
When they go inside, Augustus takes his medication and zones out. His parents watch videos of him as a boy playing basketball. Augustus asks to go downstairs, and his parents bring him down there. Hazel and Augustus lay in bed together listening to music. Eventually they fall asleep in an “entanglement of tubes and bodies.”
Like Augustus, his parents long for a time when he was healthy as shown by the videos they watch. Augustus has become completely dependent on them. The description of H and A sleeping in an entanglement of tubes and bodies symbolizes how cancer is intertwined in their lives and relationship.
Themes
Life and Death Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Being Different Theme Icon
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When Hazel and Augustus wake up, they play video games together. Hazel notes that she sucks at video games, which is actually a good thing because it gives Augustus the opportunity to die beautifully, take bullets for her, and sacrifice himself for a good cause. Eventually, Augustus’ father comes down and calls Augustus upstairs for dinner. He and Hazel kiss under an encouragement that says, “friends are forever”, and she goes home.
Through the video game, Hazel provides Augustus the opportunity to act heroically. The encouragement speaks to the idea that even after his death, Augustus will continue to live on through Hazel and their love and friendship will continue through her and his other friends.
Themes
Life and Death Theme Icon
Religion and Philosophy Theme Icon