Book Review: I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

I truly loved this. It’s about two twins, Noah and Jude, and each of their POVs are written from different points of their lives to show how they drifted apart over the years. By the end, though, time merges and everything rights itself as all the truths come out. They’re also both young artists and a lot of what happens at the beginning between them is out of pure jealousy for the other, but the lies between them stretch bigger by the end to the point where they’re only keeping the lies because they want to protect the other. In the end, they both fess up and it’s like a thousand weights lift, causing the tension that had grown taut between them to evaporate. It also has some LGBTQ elements in it because Noah is gay and he develops a relationship with another boy. I thought Nelson handled Noah’s whole story quite well, really delving into his life, thoughts, feelings, actions. Jude was another character all together because I didn’t quite like her at the beginning; actually I couldn’t stand her. But by the end, I feel like Jude redeemed herself as she saw the error of her actions.

I also really enjoyed the different styles of Noah’s chapters versus Jude’s chapters. Noah’s were the Then and Jude’s was the Now. But the way they were written stylistic according to the character was absolutely brilliant, like a bursting sun. Noah’s chapters were written more abstractly since he’s the painter/sketcher of the pair, and each scene he gave a portrait title that really encompasses how he felt by giving the reader a lasting image in their mind’s eye. Whereas Jude’s chapters were more solid, but the further the story got for her, the more the layers were chiseled away to ultimately reveal what was underneath, and this was done because Jude was the sculptor. She liked building things with her hands, versus Noah who drew/painted whether it was in his mind or on a page/canvas. It was just brilliant and Jandy Nelson is the sun.

I highly recommend this novel if you’re looking for a quick, yet very emotional YA novel with diverse topics. Also, the imaginary and writing style in this novel is just gorgeous and sparkling and rich in colors.

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