Author: Jandy Nelson
Publisher: Walker Books
Released: 16th September 2014
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Gay/ Lesbian Fiction
Pages: 371 (hardback)
Buy: I’ll Give You the Sun
Jude and her brother, Noah, are incredibly close twins. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude surfs and cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and divisive ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as an unpredictable new mentor. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.
I can now see what everyone’s been raving about. I’ll Give You the Sun is one of those books that sticks with you for a very long time. There’s very little I can say about this stunning novel that hasn’t already been said but here are a number of things I loved about the book..
The relationship between Noah and Jude was magical and you could feel how close the twins were. It was heart-wrenching to see them drift apart because twins have the strongest bond possible. They were always jealous and kept competing with each other, They both crave their mother’s attention. They’re both applying to the same art school etc etc.. It was what started their problems. So when tragedy strikes, they deal with their grief in different ways and they start to act like strangers when they need each other most. Even through their hardship they will always love each other unconditionally. It seems like one minute they are inseparable and the next they act like they hate each other. The reason I loved their relationship is because I could relate to their love/ hate relationship from experience with my own twin (although ours isn’t quite as extreme).
The writing style of the author. At first, I didn’t quite get it but as I continued reading, I found it amazing! Jandy Nelson is a writing goddess. I’ll be sure to read another of her books!
I loved the POV’s/ narratives. Noah and Jude each alternates telling a chapter of the story. Noah’s chapters take place when the twins are 13, when they are still share their incredible bond as twins and he is figuring out his attraction to his neighbor, Brian. Noah tells of his art and how he’s trying to submit his application to California School for the Arts (CSA) for high school and the emotions of first romance. Jude’s chapters take place when the twins are both 16 and no longer close. Something happened years ago that damaged their bond. We find out that Jude is a student at CSA and Noah is not, that their mother has died, and that Noah has changed. Noah’s chapters reveal the details of the past, while Jude’s chapters focus on the long-term aftermath of multiple events. Jandy managed to write beautifully and uniquely in two very distinct narrations.
I love love love the prose in this book, it’s beautiful and so well thought-through and I was sucked into it. Noah’s chapters in particular shine, as he falls in love with a boy. Jude’s romance wasn’t quite as believable, but still heart-achingly poignant.
My only problem when I was reading it is, I’m not a big fan of all the superstitions, it all just seemed slightly pretentious and a bit over the top to add to Jude’s ‘quirkiness’.
Overall, I give it 4.5 stars. If you are wondering if you should read this book, the answer is YES!