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The Sky Is Everywhereby Jandy Nelson
The Sky Is Everywhere is pretty intense — dealing with grief and a crazy first love — but it's full of real characters (meaning not that there are, like, real people in it, but that the characters are really wacky and unique) and it's honest, well written, and unexpectedly moving. I expect people will make the inevitable comparisons to Sarah Dessen, but I think this book goes into way more emotional depth than Dessen typically does. (No disrespect to Dessen fans; I'm one myself.) I really liked this book. I might have even stayed up till the wee hours to finish it.
Synopses & Reviews
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.
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"When Lennie's older sister dies suddenly, she is devastated, but she also starts realizing she no longer has to be the 'companion pony' to the 'thoroughbred' that was her dazzling sister. Living her own life proves difficult, however, both because it 'doesn't seem right that anything good should come out of Bailey's death' and because of complications that arise when she falls in love with a talented musician in the school band. This honest, complex debut is distinguished by a dreamy California setting and poetic images that will draw readers into Lennie's world, particularly in the notes Lennie writes about life with her sister on bits of paper and even trees ('I button one of her frilly shirts/ over my own T-shirt./ ....I always feel better then,/ like she's holding me'). The author perhaps creates a few too many vibrant characters and plot points (Lennie also searches for her missing mom and discovers secrets Bailey was hiding). Even so, readers will be moved by Lennie's ability to admit to even some of her most unpleasant feelings and motivations, and her growing willingness to live 'full blast.' Ages 14 — up. Two picture books explore one of the most famous sequences of numbers. (No, not the ones on Lost.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Lennie Walker, a 17-year-old bookworm and band geek, spends her time tucked safely and happily in the shadow of her fiery older sister, Bailey. But when Bailey suddenly dies, Lennie is catapulted to center stage of her own life.
Lennie plays second clarinet in the school orchestra and has always happily been second fiddle to her charismatic older sister, Bailey. Then Bailey dies suddenly, and Lennie is left at sea without her anchor. Overcome by emotion, Lennie soon finds herself torn between two boys: Bailey's boyfriend, Toby, and Joe, the charming and musically gifted new boy in town. While Toby can't see her without seeing Bailey and Joe sees her only for herself, each offers Lennie something she desperately needs. But ultimately, it's up to Lennie to find her own way toward what she really needs-without Bailey. A remarkable debut novel perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Francesca Lia Block.
About the Author
Jandy Nelson received a BA from Cornell, an MFA from Brown in poetry, and another MFA from Vermont College in writing for children and young adults. A literary agent for many years, she is also a published poet. The Sky Is Everywhere is her first novel. Jandy lives in San Francisco.
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