Wednesday, 29 July 2015

I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson // Review

I stumbled upon this book in ASDA and didn't bother buying it, then I never saw it again and Sam went on a wild goose chase trying to find it based on the very little information I'd given her "I think the pages are yellow...") I'm filing this under a book based entirely on it's cover for my 2015 book review challenge, because I was so drawn in by aaaalll the yellow.

It's a piece of YA fiction that is so beautifully written, so full of metaphor and poetry that it was just a dream to read. It follows a set of twins, Noah and Jude, each writing from their own perspective at a different time in their troubled lives. We stay with them through friendship, first loves, fights, death, drawing and despair. It's a rollercoaster that has you holding your breath without realising, tears caught in your throat and a tooth dug into your lip.

Not only is it a lovely story (it's a bildungsroman, which is my favourite genre) the book is also visually beautiful. The twins are artists, which is evident through their harrowed souls and the maturity that stretches beyond their years - and the book itself reflects this, pages with ink splatters and brush strokes and typography. Noah paints the world in his head and it spills out as we read.

We are submerged in a world of superstition and charm (Jude) as well as intensity and fear (Noah) and through the two characters' art work, we learn so much about them. The other characters in the novel help to create the most beautiful patchwork: they are so delightfully imagined and so cleverly laid out for us to devour throughout the story. Quirky boy-next-door Brian, the twins' floating grandmother, the cliché English boy who takes candid photographs of Jude in a church.

In typical YA fashion, it has its own language in parts - maybe a bit too much of it, but it's not unbearable. It gives a sense of otherness to the characters and for younger readers, it's a nice touch. The happy ending came as a shock in comparison to the rest of the story, but it was a compelling and lovely read. It also promotes an LGBT norm to younger readers and that's something I am 100% behind, so I would definitely recommend giving this one a read!


  1. I have this book but could never get into it properly! Might give it another go now x

  2. I recently acquired this book and I'm planning to read it soon. Lovely review :)

  3. Ah I love book reviews so thank you! I am always looking for more to add to my expanding collection!

    Emily xox