3 Bubble Teas, Contemporary, Dial Books, Jandy Nelson, LGBTQIA, Review

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson


I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

Published by Dial Books on September 16th, 2014

Genres: Contemporary, LGBTQIA

Pages: 371


Rating: 0ac4e714f53d9781e649ddaa06048d9b0ac4e714f53d9781e649ddaa06048d9b0ac4e714f53d9781e649ddaa06048d9b

Where to Buy: Canada*, US*

“People die, I think, but your relationship with them doesn’t. It continues and is ever-changing.”

As you can tell from the photos in this blog post, I started reading this in April 2019! I took this book with me to Chicago on a weekend trip to visit a friend. It took awhile, but I’m glad I finally read it!

In I’ll Give You the Sun, Jude and her twin brother Noah are inseparable. At first. Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door. Meanwhile, daredevil Jude wears red-red lipstick, cliff-dives, and does all the talking for the both of them.

Years later, they are barely speaking. Something has happened to change the twins in different yet equally devastating ways. But then Jude meets an intriguing, irresistible boy and a mysterious new mentor.

The 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.

The 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.

April 2019. Take me back to Chicago, please!

Please don’t send any hate toward me. But I think I’ll Give You the Sun was only an okay read.

I know that’s blasphemous to say on the internet when every review on Goodreads is praising it.

But I just couldn’t get into the writing style. Flowery language chock-full of metaphors does work on me. Sometimes I buy into it! I just couldn’t get behind it this time.

Frankly, I got tired of reading this book. The metaphors got to be too much especially when it’s one right after another.

I think I wouldn’t have minded the writing style if it was a magical realism book. Right in the first chapter, I thought that this was where the story would go. There are some beautiful sentences that lend themselves quite nicely to the genre. But instead they became muddied and over complicated the paragraphs.


Having said that, I liked Nelson’s choice to split the narrative between the twins.

If you pay close attention, you can find all the parallels between Jude and Noah’s POVs.

The only problem with this choice is that you can easily guess the reveal at the end through Jude’s first POV. So it did feel very anticlimactic when I finally got to the end.

The story had complex characters and there’s honest portrayal of teen sexuality in both a heterosexual girl and a homosexual guy.

But I grew tired of the heavy emphasis on romance. I kept hoping Nelson would lean more into Jude and Noah’s relationship with each other and with their family.

There are several moments where I felt connected to the characters. Noah’s passion for his art and his inability to pursue it fully was devastating. And I really believed in Jude’s guilt and grief. But I just think the writing style drowns all that out and takes away from these characters.

I just think there are better coming-of-ages stories that you can read. And I’d skip out on this one.


Links followed by an “*” are affiliate links, which mean that I can make a small commission through purchases and that helps to support me and my blog!

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