Monday, October 14, 2013

Book Review: The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

Monday, October 14, 2013
The Sky Is Everywhere
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Publisher: Dial
Series: Standalone
Age Group: YA
Source: Library
Seventeen-year-old Lennie Walker, bookworm and band geek, plays second clarinet and spends her time tucked safely and happily in the shadow of her fiery older sister, Bailey. But when Bailey dies abruptly, Lennie is catapulted to center stage of her own life - and, despite her nonexistent history with boys, suddenly finds herself struggling to balance two. Toby was Bailey's boyfriend; his grief mirrors Lennie's own. Joe is the new boy in town, a transplant from Paris whose nearly magical grin is matched only by his musical talent. For Lennie, they're the sun and the moon; one boy takes her out of her sorrow, the other comforts her in it. But just like their celestial counterparts, they can't collide without the whole wide world exploding.

The Sky is Everywhere is one of the most beautiful books I've ever read. I don't mean just the prose either, though it's gorgeous and there are so many quotes that I want to share with you ( you can check out my Tumblr archive for that). I also mean the atmosphere of the story. TSIE has the feel of a magical realism novel, without the magical realism... if that makes any sense. Somehow all of the darker, grittier events are seamlessly interwoven with the fantastic, fairy-tale-esque wonders, creating this amazing symphony of a book (which is actually a terribly corny pun, since a lot of the story does involve music, another plus).

And then there are the poems. They're found at the beginning and end of most chapters with pictures of the gum wrapper/crinkled paper cup/bathroom wall that they're written on (it makes sense when you read it, I promise). I'm very particular about the kind of poetry I like, and I found every single poem beautiful. Some of them I want to copy down and put up on my walls. And the way they're presented is simultaneously heartbreaking and wonderfully creative.

But my favorite part? The part that made me want to hug the book and never return it to the library? (Don't worry, I'm going to...but I am planning on getting my own copy.) That would be the characters, especially Lennie. Lennie, even though she feels differently for a lot of the novel, is so dynamic. As I read, I felt everything she feels. And even though I (thankfully) haven't been through a loss like hers, I know what it's like to have such a close bond with an older sibling.

I really want to go into all of the other characters in depth because they're AMAZING, but I'll spare you. However, I will say that a.) I want to be like Gram when I'm older b.) I want to hug Big c.) Toby's plot line just broke my heart over and over d.) Sarah (Lennie's best friend) and I would be best friends, and not just because of the name thing and e.) if you ever find a boy like Joe Fontaine, please oh please send him my way.

There is so much more that I want to say about this book, but I'm not sure I have the words to say it. The Sky is Everywhere is one of those novels that you love not just because of the writing or the characters or the plot but because of that overall feel, that wow factor. The closest I can come to describing it is to say that it's one of the most gorgeous books I've ever read- it's really so incredibly special- and everybody should go read it.
*5 stars*
A Quote from the Book: "You can tell your story any way you damn well please. It's your solo."
What's a book you've read that just has that special wow factor?


  1. I've heard so many great things about this book, I just have to read it. I love it when you can emotionally connect with the characters in a book and it sounds like this is one of those books. Great review! ~Pam

  2. You're back! I love this book. I bought one day being totally random, and it's so absolutely brilliant. All the emotions and stuff. I'm cautiously optimistic about the movie (it's gonna be produced and starred by Selena Gomez...) but I'll support any YA to movie adaptation.

    1. I am! (Well, technically I've been back for awhile, but it's taken me some time to catch up on comment replies, but... you get the idea.)

      I didn't know that about the movie- I'm a little skeptical, but I'll definitely support it!

  3. Fabulous review! This sounds soo good! I hadn't heard of it before now. Definitely adding to my TBR!

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Your comments brighten my day. :)