I received this book for free from BEA16 in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
Published by Random House Children's Books on 2016-11-01
Genres: Coming of Age, Contemporary, Love & Romance, Social Issues, Young Adult
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Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.
Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.
The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?
This was one of my most anticipated books this year and I’m so happy to say that it did not disappoint at all. After loving Everything, Everything so much last year, I was nervous going into Yoon’s sophomore novel. I think we can all name at least one or two sophomore novels that were disappointments, but Yoon followed up her debut with another beautifully written book with well-developed characters and thought-provoking relationships. I CANNOT wait for more from Yoon!!! She has definitely become a favorite/auto-buy author for me and I hope if you’re a fan of YA contemporary stories, that you’ve given her books a read.
I’ll be completely honest and let you know that I want to talk about my favorite parts of this book but there are a LOT of them. And I really don’t want to spoil anything, so I’ll still mention my favorite parts but I’ll keep it quick so I don’t completely bore you guys.
My first and most favorite part of this book is the characters. Daniel and Natasha are so well done is was easy to picture them in my mind and it felt like a truly knew them. And it wasn’t because everything was told to me. It was shown through their conversations, through their actions and reactions, and their thought processes. Which is exactly how I want to get to know a character. I don’t want to be told everything about them. I don’t want a monologue describing their looks. I want random mentions of it throughout the book, like how Daniel mentions Natasha’s hair. Then I can picture her hair without having a sentence stating what her hair looks like. Nicola does a fantastic job of slowly describing these characters throughout the book so I’m constantly learning more about them, just like if I were meeting them in real life. And I loved it all!
My next favorite part of this book was the relationships. And I don’t just mean the one that develops between Natasha and Daniel. Because, of course, we love that relationship and watching it develop so much that we don’t even care that it might look a tiny bit insta-lovey. This book deals with so many different kinds of relationships. The relationships that are quick and between strangers and those interactions might affect the rest of our day or the rest of ours lives. It deals with sibling relationships and how they change over time. It deals with marriages and broken relationships and hopes and dreams. But the ones I found most interesting were the ones between the two MCs and their parents. There was obviously a lot of mother/daughter moments in Everything, Everything. But in this one, we’re dealing with two MCs who both have married parents who are also all immigrants. There are so many interesting moments between the parents and children in these books and so many different emotions. And I absolutely love how Yoon deals with all of them. This isn’t just a romantic sort of coming-of-age story for Natasha and Daniel, it’s also a time for them to address how they really feel about their parents, when they can start to deal with the fact that their parents make mistakes too, and what they’re willing to do to make their parents happy vs what they actually want for their own lives. I love books with interesting parent/child relationships and Yoon definitely delivers in this book!
One more thing about this book that I loved was the questions it addressed in regards to the world and how we see things. Daniel and Natasha are very different in what they believe and it was interesting to see them debate such topics and really get to know each other while talking and discussing so that we could get to know them as well and also think about our answers to the questions they were dealing with. I love fate vs choice debates and that is one of the main topics they discuss in the book. But there are many others as well. This is definitely a character driven book. There’s not a lot of action happening but I still couldn’t put this book down. I wanted to know as much about these characters as possible and Yoon did a great job of letting me do just that.
If you love YA contemporary books with some romance and interesting relationships, you really need to read this book. If you read Everything, Everything last year and enjoyed it like I did, don’t miss this one! I liked this one even more, so if Everything, Everything wasn’t a favorite of yours, you still might want to check this one out. It really does give the reader a lot to think about . And I just have to say, I really loved the end. If you didn’t like EE because of the love solves all storyline, you might want to give this one a chance. This one might very well end up on my favorite books of the year in December!