but then Jude meets an intriguing, irresistible boy and a mysterious new mentor.
he early years are Noah's to tell; the later years are Jude's. But they each have only half the story, and if they can only find their way back to one another, they'll have a chance to remake their world. This radiant, award-winning novel from the acclaimed author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.
Synopsis from Goodreads
The first thing that I thought after reading this book was "Why did I wait so long to read this?!". The second thought was that I'm so happy my English class has this as a novel study option because it forced me to read it -- and I'm so happy I did!
Beautiful Character Voice
I'm a huge fan of multiple POVs in a novel because I think it almost always gives readers a deeper understanding of all the characters involved; this is definitely proven true in I'll Give You the Sun as both Noah and Jude's voices come across clearly throughout the book and give readers a chance to really know them both. When reading Noah's chapters, I honestly felt like I was listening to an 8th grader trying to understand who he is, while Jude's chapters showed a maturity in both her and her brother as she struggled to figure out how to correct her mistakes. My only complaint is that I would have loved to get one chapter from Noah at age 16 so that we could see his maturity a bit, instead of him through Jude's eyes.
Nonlinear Storytelling is Excellent
I'll Give You the Sun is told in such a cool way! I love that alongside having distinct character voices, we also get to read about the events in the novel in a nonlinear way. Every chapter from Noah's perspective takes place when the twins are 13/14 years old, while Jude's chapters are when they are roughly 16 years old. Nelson weaves this story brilliantly, encouraging readers to follow along to find out why these ages are so important to the respective character and what happened in these missing years that so dramatically changed their relationship (and the family dynamic). While important things are happening to Jude and Noah at both ages, it's clear that these specific ages are turning points for them both and readers should expect to love the way this coming-of-age story is told.
Real Characters and Family Dynamic
I thought Nelson did a brilliant job developing the characters in this novel so that they all felt incredibly realistic. As a reader, I fell in love with Noah and Jude (and Oscar, G, Brian, and the rest) and my heart broke with them as the story developed. I never liked Dianna (their mom), because she always seemed to wishy-washy to me. I also really didn't like how she treated her children; the fact that they felt they needed to compete for her attention drove me insane! But even then, I felt like she was well crafted and that Nelson really did a great job creating a family that was slowly falling apart, and giving us the reasons why.
I loved this book and would highly recommend it to everyone! I'm so excited for my students to read this so that I can talk about it with someone in person, but I'm sure they'll love it as much as I do. If you enjoy YA contemporary novels, coming-of-age stories, or novels that make you smile and cry, this is a book you should definitely read.
FINAL RATING: 5/5
Hi, I'm Alexandra! I love reading (largely YA fiction, but sometimes I'll read "adult" books), playing board games, Nutella, and binge-watching TV shows on Netflix with my husband.
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