I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson

Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary, LGBT
Publisher: Dial Books
Publication Date: September 16th 2014

3 OUT OF 5 STARS

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

Nothing could ever split apart Noah and Jude – until something does. Together since before birth a tragedy and several unfortunate events rip them apart. A complicated web of lies and half-truths pushes them further and further from the other. If only they could find their way back to each other they’d learn that the world isn’t quite what they’ve made it out to be.

This book is a beautiful slow build. It has love, mystery, pain and some humour. Nelson has a unique, but polarizing writing style. Fantastical elements fuse into her contemporary setting and her descriptions are a little over the top. It’s definitely a love it or hate it sort of style.

The book is told in alternating POVs between Noah and Jude. The downside is that instead of being divided into bite-sized chapters the book is separated into eight undigestible chunks. In a story where the POVs are meant to intertwine and reveal things to you, the chapters should have been shorter and switched more often. It’s difficult to remember how what happened to Noah eight pages ago relates to a tiny event in Jude’s life now. The size of the chapters also makes the beginning of the book drag on perhaps a little too long. In fact the entire book feels longer than it needed to be.

Noah is definitely the more likable twin, but even then both stories seemed steeped in slightly unnecessary drama. There were plotlines in both that could have absolutely been dropped, or at least dealt with better. The romances were, like the writing, a little imaginative.I didn’t really feel like either of the main couples were well developed outside of lust, although the books portrayal of sex and sexuality is actually a point towards it.

There is a lot that unfortunately kept me from loving this book. I’ll Give You The Sun is a book that is obese with metaphors. I love poetic writing styles but there were times when some of the metaphors disappointed me. They felt extremely hyperbolic and slightly ridiculous.

The “twists” are really predictable, and the plot doesn’t quite go anywhere. Noah and Jude are pretty terrible, neither of their parents are great, in fact, other that Garcia it’s hard to sympathize with any of the characters for me. The worst part was the forced happy ending through MASSIVE coincidences. I’ll Give You The Sun doesn’t feel like it should have a happy ending but somehow it does even though it takes several miracles to produce.

The way this book deals with loss, sexuality, and relationships is, however, brilliant. For readers who love Nelson’s writing style it’s a book that will stay with them forever – but for those who find the excessive use of metaphors a little jarring there are other books that follow similar plots just as well.

BUY THE BOOK

For Fans Of: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

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