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Coming Soon:
~Review: The Killing Woods
~Review: The Waiting Sky
~Review: A Certain Slant of Light
~Review: Timepiece
~Review: Infinityglass

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Review: The Sky is Every Where (500th Post!)

The Sky is Every Where (ARC) by Jandy Nelson
Publisher: Dial
Pub. Date: March 9th, 2010
Pages: 272
Age Level: 14+
From Trade

Synopsis via Goodreads
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.

This remarkable debut is perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Francesca Lia Block. Just as much a celebration of love as it is a portrait of loss, Lennie's struggle to sort her own melody out of the noise around her is always honest, often hilarious, and ultimately unforgettable.

The Sky is Every Where is a lovely, heartfelt story from debut YA author, Jandy Nelson. There are a lot of grief books floating around out there; however, The Sky is Every Where takes the proverbial cake and presents itself in such a refreshing way that allows it to truly hold it's own ground.

Lennie is one of the most raw and honest heroines I've come across and I found it very easy to connect with her. Lennie's emotions and confusion concerning the new path her life was taking were so real and palpable that I too would feel torn, happy, or angry when she would. Sure, she made some wrong decisions along the way but she was always aware of when she messed up and wanted to do better. She also had a great dry sense of humor that was a very welcome personality trait as it helped prevent the story from being overwhelmingly heavy. The Sky is Every Where also had a terrific cast of distinct supporting characters. Joe was the perfect romantic interest and I can definitely see where the attraction to him was. He's funny, talented, and infinitely charming. Joe, however, was not without some small flaws which helped keep him believable so as not to come off as that too-good-to-be-true kinda guy. Then we have Toby and I'll confess, I was not very fond of him at first. As the story progressed though, I grew to understand him better and found myself liking him by the end. Gram and Big, Lennie's grandmother and uncle, were both humorous, colorful characters that really spiced up the story, as was Lennie's best friend Sarah.

The Sky is Every Where was very keenly and expertly plotted. Nelson incorporated such a satisfying, consistent, and powerful balance of grief, romance, and family. Each of these aspects flowed seamlessly together, forming a well paced and engaging story.

Nelson's writing style was very beautifully wrought and lyrically crafted. There was something so genuine about it and Nelson also managed to have the perfect amount of humor weaved in, which really helped balance the story out. Also, I loved coming across the random notes that Lennie had written and left in all sorts of odd locations. They really added that little something extra to the writing as well as to the plot.

The thing I loved about the ending of The Sky is Every Where was getting to see how far the characters had come and grown since the beginning, especially Lennie. I don't know that I would go quite so far as to say I loved the ending, but I did really like it and thought it tied things up nicely.

All in all, The Sky is Every Where is a prime example of how books about grief should be written. The story was very compelling and I found I really enjoyed it, and its characters, with my heart both sinking and rising at times, as though I were on a roller coaster. This really was a stunning debut and I would highly recommend it to anyone out there. I know I'm definitely looking forward to reading more of Jandy Nelson's work.

Characters: A-
Writing: A-
Plot: B+
Ending: B
Enjoyment/Likability: B+
Recommendable: A

Overall: B+/A-

Cover: B


Book Loving Mommy said...

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Whether or not you pass it on is up to you but just know I think your blog is beautiful!

A Life Bound By Books said...

Great review! I so LOVE this book! It was in my top 10 fav books I read last year. I can't wait to read more from Jandy Nelson in the future.

DforDarla said...

Happy 500th post!! Great review.

Briana said...

Congrats on the 500th post!!! :) Great review by the way. I've been wanting to read this for a while now.

Rachel said...

Great review! I read this book over the new year, and utterly adored it. I also did a review on it the other day on my blog, if you're interested in checking it out :) I loved hearing your thoughts on the book, very interesting.

Shari Green said...

Congrats on your 500th post! :)

Thanks for your review. I loved THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE -- probably my fave book of 2010!

Nikki (Wicked Awesome Books) said...

Yay for your 500th post! Congratulations :D

Great review too. The Sky is Everywhere was my favorite book of 2010 and I'm happy to see you enjoyed it as well. The little notes from the beginning of the chapters was really unique and something that caught my attention instantly. Even months later, I'm still thinking about this book.

Mavie said...

read this one last year and it's absolutely amazing. great review!

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