All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
Pages: 390 pages
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Knopf, January 2015
The Fault in Our Stars meets Eleanor and Park in this exhilarating and heart-wrenching love story about a girl who learns to live from a boy who intends to die.
Soon to be a major motion picture starring Elle Fanning!
Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him.
Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death.
When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the “natural wonders” of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself—a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink.
This is an intense, gripping novel perfect for fans of Jay Asher, Rainbow Rowell, John Green, Gayle Forman, and Jenny Downham from a talented new voice in YA, Jennifer Niven.
All The Bright Places is one of those books I’ve see everywhere, hear everywhere but haven’t gotten a chance to pick it up. I actually owned a copy but I gave it away because I wanted a hardcover version, but then never got around buying a new copy so I never thought of reading it. I saw it at the library and decided that it was time to pick it up.
Since ATBP is such a popular book, I’ve heard bits and pieces about it everywhere. Particularly, I know that it’s been said to be TFIOS meets E&P, which happen to be two of my favorite YA novels of all time. So with that said, I couldn’t help but have some pretty high expectations when I started reading this book.
I really liked Jennifer Niven’s writing style. Something about it flowed really well and the narrations were always interesting to read. I felt like there was also adequate details so that I could easily picture the scenes as well.
One of the thing with YA characters, to me personally, is that I either connect with them or I don’t. Sometimes, it’s really easy for me to form a “bond” with the characters, but sometimes I just don’t quite understand and it makes it difficult for me to connect with the story as a whole. Even in cases where the characters are just okay, it tends to turn out to be unmemorable for me. I was pleasantly surprised when I really felt this “bond” with the characters. Forming that bond helped me really connect to the story and become invested into the plot.
I haven’t cried while reading a book in awhile, and I didn’t with ATBP. But I would be lying if I said I didn’t tear up a little bit.
ATBP addresses some themes that are quite sensitive and kind of heavy to read, but Niven makes it so that this topic is more easily approached, from the lens of a young adult character. I honestly commend Niven for writing this book, it really did touch me.
If you haven’t read ATBP yet, I highly recommend that you do! If I had a list of must-read YA books, ATBP would definitely be on it!