Monday, May 3, 2010

The Sky is Everywhere-- Jandy Nelson

So one million years ago when I was a teenager, my mom used to tease me because I loved to read "dying books". There was nothing I liked more than grabbing a fresh box of kleenex and crying my eyes out to an incredibly sad book where inevitably, someone important dies.

The Sky is Everywhere is not your generic ya weepie tome. In fact, our protagonist is pretty darn tough. What I loved the most about this book was how honest it was, even when sugar-coating the grieving process is less than savory.

Lennie's older sister Bailey was her best friend... they became understandably close when their mother abandoned them and left them to be raised by their grandmother. When Bailey died suddenly from an arrhythmia, Lennie found herself in the sunlight all alone... a place she (the shy band geek type) has never wanted to be. Lennie's grieving process leads her to a closeness with Bailey's fiance, and although Lennie has a strong, positive relationship with another guy, she can't avoid the electric connection she feels to Bailey's fiance. Throughout the book, snippets of Bailey's poems are scattered, and music is also a strong theme. And though it will strongly appeal to girls who like sad but compelling books with romance, I do feel this book will have a broader appeal. I just wish the cover was better...

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