[441]: I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

Dial | Hardcover, 371 pages
Publication Date: September 16, 2014
Young Adult Fiction | LGBT | Romance
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

Speaking of books that are impossible to review, I’ll Give You the Sun incites the kind of frustration that only book reviewers suffering from a “reviewer’s block” can relate. I’ve sat on my desk and stared at a blinking cursor for days, and have waffled between writing a full review or leaving the rating speak for itself. Either way, I thought that it’d probably be a futile practice. Jandy Nelson has done this to me twice now. She’s the kind of writer who frustrates me; the kind who writes brilliantly but kills me ever so slowly because she doesn’t put out books too often. In fact, this is only her second novel – with four years of break in between. But. I have such high regard for authors who value quality instead of quantity. And this woman, knows quality writing. She is the type of writer whose prowess will either inspire you to write or would make you say, what the hell is the point in trying? 

 This book is kind of different in a way that it uses two perspectives in past and present timelines. Two timelines that intersect; creating a story arch so complete that the readers would hardly notice the seams. We see a couple of kids that were wholly removed and involved in each other’s stories. The effect is the kind of empathy that lets a reader see the characters with both critical and biased perspectives. It was brilliantly executed.

This is the part where I’d normally talk about the characters, or the story itself. But the truth is, I really am at a loss. But I implore you to read this book. Don’t miss out on Jandy Nelson’s achingly beautiful writing and being introduced to characters worth knowing. If there’s one thing that’s becoming increasingly evident in the author’s work, is that she’d leave you aching at the end of her books. Not just because of the heart-wrenching story you’ve just read, but because you know you’ll never get enough of the pain she’s put you through. She’ll make a masochist of you yet, because I can almost guarantee that you’d want to reread just to experience it all over again. For me, Jandy Nelson is the Melina Marchetta of North America. And that’s speaking a lot because Melina is a literary goddess in my eyes.

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  • I recently purchased this book, but have yet to read it. I MUST get to it asap though after reading your review! Sounds amazing and also like one of those indescribable. I will have to come back to this post after I’ve read it so I leave my nonspoilery thoughts!!

  • Ooh, Melina Marchetta of America? That’s the highest of praise from you! I didn’t know that I wanted to read this before I started hearing all the buzz, but the absurdly stellar reviews have definitely swayed me. I don’t mind aching, so long as it was worth it, 🙂

  • Great review, Joy! I’m totally sold. I guess this is one of those hyped book that delivered. Excited to get my copy. 🙂

  • sarabara081

    I can’t even with how beautiful and perfect this book was! I fell so in love with it. A few of my friends are reading it now and none of them can get into it and I’m sitting over here like, “WHAT?! HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE?!” lol

  • You’re not the first person I’ve heard sing her praises, Joy, but my ears perk up even more when I hear a Marchetta comparison! I’ll have to get to her soon. Great review! 🙂

  • I feel the same way about this one. It’s just impossible to review because the feelings it inspired were too unbelievable to even put into words. Such a lovely story–I just want to read it again. Fantastic review, dear!(:

  • Eileen @ BookCatPin

    I have yet to read any Jandy Nelson and Melina Marchetta books but I’m definitely planning on it! Although I’m a little scared of what kind of pain I’ll be put through….

  • Melanie (YA Midnight Reads)

    You had me at Jandy Nelson is the Melina Marchetta of North America. I have read The Sky is Everywhere and it was so beautifully written, so I am totally up for reading this one!

    Great review, Joy! <33

  • I understand the exact troubles you had in writing this review. I am currently suffering the same for Blue Lily, Lily Blue and Stiefvater always does this to me. But I think you still did this book justice. It was a brilliantly executed story and took a toll on my heart!

  • Woah, regardless of whether this book frustrated or enthused you, if anything it sounds like a really emotional and powerful read! I love the past and present perspectives interchanged here to tell a really strong story. Really awesome review Joy!

  • Zoe

    If the five star rating hadn’t already convinced me enough, this review certainly did! There’s been a TON of hype around this, and I am so glad to hear it delivered for you. It sounds like such a powerful and emotional story, and I can’t wait to try it for myself. Thanks for sharing Joy and, as always, BEAUTIFUL review! <3

  • Oh yes I saw another great review about this one and I’m glad to see you had such a great time as well. Really curious!

  • Bisecting timeliness are tricky but if done well like this makes the flow of the story exciting! I’m not familiar with this author but it sounds like shes can give you the feels!

  • well, damn! You convinced me, lady! ;))

  • I have really been looking forward to this book, so I’m glad you adored it. I really need to read Marchetta too (I’ve read Finnikin, but none of her contemporaries).

  • This must be one heck of a book to leave you speechless, and I’m very intrigued. I’ve actually been seeing this book around already, but I’m thinking that I must definitely get a copy soon.

  • Hahaha some books just do that to you! And in those cases, they make me want to read it any more! So yep. I’ll try to see if I can find this book in the library later

  • Alright you sold me. If not this one, then I will definitely be reading one of her two books. I love quality writing as well and even though I am sure I will be just as frustrated with trying to write a review afterwards, I know it will be worth it. 😉

  • Meeep. Awesome review, Joy 😀 I’m so so glad you loved this book so much. <3 But I am still a bit unsure. (Okay, fine, I can't afford to buy it at the moment, lol) but one day, I hope 🙂 SO MANY have loved this book. And I want to love it too. We'll see 🙂 Thank you for sharing about it. <3 I love your thoughts on it.

  • I really really ended up connecting with this book and falling in love. It completely wrecked me and Noah and Jude’s story is one I believe needed to be shared! Lovely review 🙂