Wednesday, July 27, 2016

I'll Give You the Sun


"Maybe some people are just meant to be in the same story." 
-Jandy Nelson, I'll Give You the Sun

It's definitely been a while since I've updated this blog, but now that I've finished my Master's, I actually have the time to read what I want to read (gasp). And trust me, the list is ever growing. A common side effect of being a book lover.

I've read a lot of new YA stuff this summer that I've been meaning to read, but I'm going to start with the most recent one I finished, as that one is most fresh in my mind, I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson.

At the age of 13, twins Jude and Noah are almost inseparable; Noah is quiet and isolated, always sketching and following around the neighbor boy, where Jude is daredevil enough for the both of them. Flash forward 3 years, and their relationship has completely disintegrated. As Noah tells the story of the past, and Jude tells the story of the future, the twins learn that the only way they'll be able to move forward is by reconciling their relationship.

The major aspect I think this book gets props for is its use of the multi-narrator. This narrative device has become all the rage in the YA world; looking through this section in any bookstore, a good majority of the books that you pick up are going to have at least 2, if not more, narrators. If done well, this isn't a bad thing, as it allows authors to bring more voices into their stories, maybe include more diversity, etc. This book stands out from those because the two narrators are also from two different points in the narrators' lives: when they are 13 and when they are 16. This device pulls the reader in right from the beginning, sparking curiosity and moving the plot forward at a nice pace.

This wasn't the only strength of this book: there were some really beautiful lines, and the characterization was phenomenal. As you get more and more into Noah and Jude's heads, you keep moving forward because you just want them to get back to where they used to be, to mend their relationship. Their pain, their struggles felt so real, and I think they're relatable, no matter who picks up this book.

I think the only major critique I have is that some of the supernatural stuff threw me off slightly at the beginning, but it didn't take long for me to adjust to it in the narrative. Otherwise, this is phenomenal read, and a story that will linger in your mind once it's over.

4.5/5 stars

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