I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson | Book Review

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson | Book ReviewI'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
Published by Dial Books on 2014-09-16
Genres: Adolescence, Family, Love & Romance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 384
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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A brilliant, luminous story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

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. 
This radiant, fully alive, sometimes very funny novel from the critically acclaimed author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once. 

"A wild, beautiful, and profoundly moving novel. Jandy Nelson’s writing is so electric, so alive, her pages practically glow in the dark." Ransom Riggs,New York Times bestselling author of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children and Hollow City 
"Jandy Nelson is a rare, explosive talent, and one of the best writers working today. Her prose is vivid, breathtaking, and drenched in passion, and her stories remind me why words can change the world." -Tahereh Mafi, New York Times bestselling author of the Shatter Me series. 
"I love this book. Jandy Nelson is my new writing hero. Read this book.  She'll be your favorite author as well." Holly Goldberg Sloan, New York Times bestselling author of Counting by 7s

 Jandy Nelson’s writing is poetic and mesmerizing. More importantly, Nelson weaves a novel that seeps into your bones like fire on a cold day . . . I’ll Give You the Sun is a novel that promises a story like nothing else and then delivers it.” Garret Freymann-Weyr, author of Printz Honor book, My Heartbeat  

"An extraordinary book! I've never read anything like it. Lyrical-unique-passionate-magical-tragic-hopeful--Nelson's characters will fly off the page and into your heart." --Nancy Garden, author of Annie on my Mind.

This book gave me the sun. After finishing the last page, which I just did literally two seconds ago, I feel as though Jandy Nelson has taken the sun into her hands and pushed it into my heart with her brilliant prose and words. I think it’s a herculean task to review, to do justice to a book that has made you feel so much, that took you on this grand journey where you come out the other end looking at the world in a whole new light. Friends, I did not know that I would end up saying this but Jandy Nelson has surpassed The Sky Is Everywhere with her latest release I’ll Give You The Sun. I am feeling that paradox where if every book Jandy Nelson writes is as good as I’ll Give You The Sun and The Sky Is Everywhere then I would willingly wait years for that greatest, but at the same time waiting years IS SO HARD.

I’ll Give You The Sun is told in two timelines. The first timeline is told by Noah at 13 years old, describing the events leading up to this huge rift between Noah and his twin sister Jude. The second timeline is told by Jude at 16 years old after the rift and this incredible turning point, that as soon as Jude’s first chapter began, I had to text Jamie a giant WTF IS THIS because it took me by total surprise. Also, I want to be totally upfront with you guys and tell you that I was actually kind of dreading this book at first because I noticed that the chapters were really, really long and long chapters make me nervous. I’ll admit, it took me awhile to find my rhythm and find my groove as a reader with this book, but eventually it was there and I fell in love. These parallel storylines are perfect with how they unfold. And now, as I describe the two storylines I will do my absolute best to not spoil you.

The Invisible Museum (Noah)

Noah’s sections and chapters are all entitled “The Invisible Museum” and yes, this does have meaning but you don’t find out what it is until, pretty much the end. So, okay in Noah’s timeline and chapters, like I mentioned above, we learn what leads up to and causes the rift between Noah and Jude. During these chapters, Noah and Jude, and their mom and dad all still live together. Their grandmother Sweetwine has died pretty recently and left Jude her bible. Now, this isn’t a bible in the Biblical sense, but a book of collected superstitions having to do with luck. During this part, Noah and Jude decide they want to apply to the California School for Arts. Noah is this sensitive artist who sees the world in such a unique and beautiful way. He is constantly painting pictures in his mind. It’s not all perfect for Noah, though, as he experiences bullying from these older boys. Also, Noah is hiding a secret. You see, he’s gay. These chapters tell a story of Noah’s first love and all the feelings of longing, envy, tenderness and anger that an all consuming love can bring.

The History Of Luck (Jude)

Jude’s sections and chapters are all entitled “The History Of Luck”, there is also a part where her chapter title has meaning. In Jude’s storyline, she has cut off all the characteristic blonde hair that she has in Noah’s storyline. In fact, her very first chapter has this huge and giant reveal that knocked me right over. The Jude we meet in “The History Of Luck” is very different from the Jude in “The Invisible Museum.” She’s more repressed and sad with very good reason. Her story is a story of redemption and forgiveness and ghosts. It’s glorious. And beautiful. So, anyways, Jude is known as CJ at her school because all of the clay sculptures she tries to make end up breaking. So, she decides that she wants to work in stone. And well, that’s all I can tell you for that bit because this book is best unraveled bit by bit and not with a review. Let’s just say that Jude’s storyline is every bit as engaging as Noah’s and her’s is the story where the two find their way again. It’s absolutely perfect.

My emotions totally ran the gamut while reading I’ll Give You The Sun. I was up and down and just, all over the place. I have to say that reading Jandy Nelson’s latest book put me in this sort of dreamlike trance state and that’s totally because of Jandy Nelson’s prose. There are lots and lots and lots of pages that I just want to underline the whole entire page. If I knew where on Earth my highlighter tabs were, the pages would look like a rainbow. I just, this book totally took my breath away. With the family relationships and the reveals and the secrets and the love, because yes there’s kissing and romance, I am so overcome with feelings. I have not even touched on every single element with this review, but honestly, I don’t need to. I know or rather, I hope that this will be enough to make you want to read Nelson’s latest book. It was worth the wait.

Read I’ll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson as soon as you get your hands on a copy. It is a transformative read.

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April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.
About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. Your review is lovely, April. It is, indeed, really hard to put into words how amazing and wonderful I’ll Give You the Sun is, and how incredibly unexpected and moving the experience of reading it is. I really loved Nelson’s writing, and can’t wait for more of her novels!

  2. OH!! Alright, I have to take this off of the BEA shelf and read it. I love this author’s work!