Book Review: I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

About the Book:

The New York Times Bestselling story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, Jojo Moyes, Emma Straub, and Rainbow Rowell.

“We were all heading for each other on a collision course, no matter what. Maybe some people are just meant to be in the same story.”
 
 

At first, Jude and her twin brother are NoahandJude; inseparable. Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude wears red-red lipstick, cliff-dives, and does all the talking for both of them.Years later, they are barely speaking. Something has happened to change the twins in different yet equally devastating ways . . . but then Jude meets an intriguing, irresistible boy and a mysterious new mentor.The early years are Noah’s to tell; the later years are Jude’s. But they each have only half the story, and if they can only find their way back to one another, they’ll have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant, award-winning novel from the acclaimed author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.

Printz Award Winner
Stonewall Honor Book

About the Author:

Jandy Nelson, like her characters in I’ll Give you the Sun, comes from a superstitious lot. She was tutored from a young age in the art of the four-leaf clover hunt; she knocks wood, throws salt, and carries charms in her pockets. Her debut novel, The Sky Is Everywhere, was on multiple Best Books of the Year lists, was a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults pick, earned numerous starred reviews, has been translated widely, and continues to enjoy great international success. Currently a full-time writer, Jandy lives and writes in San Francisco, California—not far from the settings of The Sky Is Everywhere and I’ll Give You the Sun


The Review:

On my 25th birthday, my sister and brother-in-law gifted me a Nook Book because of the volumes of books I had to read thanks to my MPhil thesis. Either they felt sorry for me reading countless eBooks on my laptop, or when I joked about Kindles being horrible and maybe Nook Books being better, they believed me. Anyway, right after I got my Nook Book, my reading habit actually increased
tenfold. Because all the expensive books that I would eye online was suddenly available to me in my handy little device.


One of the books that lay in wait for me inside of the Nook Book was, I’ll Give You the Sun. I don’t quite
remember when I had fed my copy of it into the Nook. But three days ago, when I started combing through my old files, looking for books in the Young Adult genre, it sprung out at me. I remembered I had abandoned this book a long time ago.


When I started reading it again, it felt like entering the world of the familiar. I know exactly where I had left Noah and exactly where I had kept Jude waiting for me. I was curious about their stories. I was curious from the book blurb to know exactly what could have happened to split apart twins who seemed to be joined at the hip.

This story is about sibling rivalry. But how when your parents aren’t there for you, when they’re lost in their own world they could inflict a lot of damage on you! This story teaches you about the magic of first love, the fear that it might all end and the secrets and lies that we spew which can be poisonous. Human beings are not perfect. And we need to stop putting people up on pedestals. Because when the reality finally shines through, it becomes difficult for everyone to pick up the broken pieces and move on.

Moving on – that’s another major theme running through this wonderful novel. While at the heart of the story is Jude and Noah, there are other characters that heavily impact them. The other characters who do not stay around the story like props, but are active participants.

There’s Brian who makes Noah’s heart go pitter-patter, there’s Zephyr who forces Jude to grow up far more quickly than she has to. There’s the English guy, the tormented artist and of course, the twins’ parents who sets everything in the story in motion.

I finished reading I’ll Give You the Sun late last night at 1:45 am, and felt utterly overwhelmed by the impact the story had had on me. For a minute I was in Love Cove, with Jude and Noah, and feeling as
though everything that happened to them had happened to me. This is one of those amazing books where even when you close the book (or in my case shut off your Nook), the characters refuse to leave you and you have to console yourself by concocting a story where everything falls into place and they live happily ever after.


And some of the quotes from the book are going to stay with me forever:

In one split second I saw everything I could be, everything I want to be. And all that I’m not.

Maybe some people are just meant to be in the same story.

I gave up practically the whole world for you, the sun, stars, ocean, trees, everything. I gave it all up
for you.


If bad luck knows who you are, become someone else.

When people fall in love, they burst into flames.

You have to see the miracles,  for there to be miracles.

Rating: 4/5

Review was originally published here.

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