Published: October 27, 2015
Publisher: Speak (first published September 16th 2014 by Dial Books)
Genre And Themes: LGBTQ, Romance, Young Adult, Highschool
Length: 400 pages, paperback
Ebook ISBN/ASIN: 0142425761 (ISBN13: 9780142425763)
Characters: Jude Sweetwine, Noah Sweetwine, Dianna Sweetwine, Benjamin Sweetwine, Grandma Sweetwine, Guillermo Garcia, Brian Connelly, Oscar Ralph
This is Jandy Nelson’s second novel which garnered tons of literary awards including the 2015 Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature.
With that being said, let it be known that I am in the minority here when I say that this book just didn’t resonate with me. In fact, this is my least favorite read so far this year.
I just find the whole plot too convoluted for my liking. I mean, I get that there are pivotal moments in our lives that makes us see the ‘light’ or make us choose the ‘dark side’ but the whole thing between Noah and Jude, with all their secrets and their uber-competitiveness was just too much that it almost felt evil.
Jude and Noah are super competitive fraternal twins. Once inseparable, they have grown to like different things and found themselves in in the midst of family tragedy that set them apart with secrets that may or may not heal the wounds in their hearts.
I also have a bit of a tough time swallowing the fact that they’re only 13 when their story started and it concluded at 16. It felt like the author took too much of a liberty that’s too fantastical to believe. I cannot find the sense of realism in it. And I’m not even referring to their dead loved ones appearing all throughout the book. I know that the author can write it whichever way she wanted to but I guess it just didn’t work, what with all her play on the personalities of the twins.
I won’t delve deeper into the other characters because it’ll just make me think of how much older Jude’s love interest than her, then the issues about their parents and the fact that the last part made me feel like Jude was somehow venerated into sainthood. I swear, I was rolling my eyes the whole time.
This book just reads like it’s more of the story of Jude and her hang ups. It’s a shame because I really liked Noah’s character and thought that it’s much more dynamic than his twin sister
My apology for this rant-view, but I just want to get this out there. Again, this must be the cliche case of “it’s not the book, it’s me…” Oh, well…
Rating: 1 out of 5 stars
About The Author
Jandy Nelson, like her characters in I’ll Give You the Sun and The Sky is Everywhere, 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 critically-acclaimed, New York Times bestselling second novel, I’ll Give You the Sun, received the prestigious Printz Award, Bank Street’s Josette Frank Award, and is a Stonewall Book Award honor. Both Sun and her debut, The Sky Is Everywhere, have been YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults picks (Sun, a Top Ten on Both YALSA and Rainbow Lists) and on multiple best of the year lists including the New York Times, Time Magazine, NPR, have earned many starred reviews, and continue to enjoy great international success, collectively published in over 47 countries. I’ll Give You the Sun has been sold to Warner Brothers and screenwriter Natalie Krinsky is currently writing the adaptation. Jandy, a literary agent for many years, received a BA from Cornell University and MFAs in Poetry and Children’s Writing from Brown University and Vermont College of Fine Arts. Currently a full-time writer, she lives and writes in San Francisco, California—not far from the settings of her novels. Visit Jandy at http://www.jandynelson.com. Follow her on twitter: @jandynelson or Facebook: Facebook.com/jandy.nelson. Author photo credit: Sonya Sones.