Monday 8 August 2016

Review on I'll Give You the Sun

All Noah Sweetwine wants in life is to get into the art school of his dreams. However, his twin sister Jude has other plans, including hanging out with older surfer boys and wearing short skirts. When tragedy strikes, the twins strong bond is severed, and their lives are not what they once were. Noah and Jude must learn to be truthful with each other if they are ever to repair their broken relationship

Ok so hear me out here. I realise everyone is ranting and raving about how amazing this book is, but to me it felt like your average typical YA contemporary. I'm not saying I didn't like the book, but it's not one i'll still be thinking about in a few months time. The story centres around twins Noah and Jude, and is told in a first person narrative by both twins at different points in their lives. Noah's point of view is from when they were thirteen, while Jude's is from the present day where they are sixteen. The two storylines start out being seemingly unrelated, but are gradually cleverly interwoven until they come together to form a full story. I loved this narrative technique and getting to know the characters at two different points in their lives. However one thing I didn't like was how lengthy each chapter was, which forced me to stop reading in the middle of a chapter multiple times.

Noah was by far my favourite character. He was the only character (besides the parrot) with any sort of comedic value, and I loved seeing how determined he was to get into art school. I also loved his relationship with Brian, and felt that it developed a lot more naturally than Jude and Oscar's. Brian is an extremely quirky character who is obsessed with space and is often collecting meterorites. I thought it was extremely cute that Noah kept the rock that Brian gave him, and the scene on the roof with Brian's telescope was probably my favourite scene in the whole book. However I did think Brian had more potential as a character, and I was disappointed we didn't get a scene of the boys reuniting for the first time in two years towards the end of the book.

Compared to the romance between Noah and Brian, I felt the romance between Jude and Oscar was extemely cliché. I thought the descriptions and metaphors were over the top, and they honestly made me cringe a couple of times. I feel that overusing metaphors causes them to lose their impact, and are much more effective when used sparingly to portray strong and powerful emotions. One thing I hate is instalove, and it annoyed me that Jude broke hey “boycott” at the first sight of a cute boy before she even knew his name. Although I usually love the handsome, overconfident boy with a tragic backstory, I found Oscar to be a little creepy for taking pictures of her without her permission and asking her to do a naked photoshoot. I also came to not enjoy Jude' chapters a much as I enjoyed Noah's, as I felt that nothing really happened apart from her working on her sculpture and flirting with Oscar.

I feel as if lack of communication as a main plot point is usually a lazy way to create disputes between characters, and although it is used regularly in some of my favourite works of fiction, it's always something that annoys me, especially when it's something easily resolved. Noah and Jude are extremely petty towards each other, which is fueled by jealously. There are a lot of secrets and petty revenge, one instance which comes as a shocking revelation towards the end of the book which made me dislike Jude even more.

There were some important themes in this book, such as a loss, betrayal, guilt, jealously and coming out. The book focuses heavily on the death of the twins mother and the aftermath. I loved that by the end of the book they had started to come to terms with her death, and after revealing some secrets started to realise her death was an unfortunate accident. I felt as if I would have enjoyed this book more if it had focused more on the relationships between the twins rather than the romances. I also felt as if the romances were not balanced, as Jude and Oscar was focused on a lot more than Noah and Brian. Although I do not usually give half ratings, I think I would probably give this one a 3.5.


  1. Great review. I agree with a lot of this. I read this book at the beginning of the year, and I thought it was overhyped. I liked it a lot, but it wasn’t as great as I was expecting. My expectations were probably too high.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

    1. same here! it wasn't a bad book i was just expecting more but i just felt it was kind of average. I honestly wanted more romance between Noah and Brian because we already get enough hetero romance in just about every YA contemporary ever

  2. People ranted and raved about this one, and as much as I liked her first book--I just don't think I'll be picking this up. Thanks for the honest review!