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review 2017-04-15 02:18
Where Practicality is Overrated, Hopeless Romantic Rejoice!
The Sun Is Also a Star - Nicola Yoon

I can be a hopeless romantic in the things I never thought I would believe in. At times, life can take me to some places I never expect to be, meet incredible and wonderful people through time and in the end, when I believe practicality is reality, it became overrated.


The Sun is Also a Star is by far truthful to that. I know, not everyone do experience that in their lives but I do believe in our choices, the universe plays a role. That one small decision can lead to big things. That significant sign will lead to an inevitable life-changing moment. And when we fall in love, it is instant without reason that only comes later. This book has it all. Reality and the inconceivable. Hope and lost. Science and dreams. I experience through all that... and this book writes it like its true.


Unlike Everything, Everything, this book is written in two main perspectives of two main characters and it all happened in a single day. I like how Nicola Yoon inserts other people's lives that gets affected by the main characters and a few small notable facts that she included makes it a grand read. Simple and yet beautiful, the flow of this story is more believable to me than Everything, Everything, which I had a harder time to accept. The romance is just what I felt a better execution and towards the end, it is what it is - that even hope may come true. The beauty of it is how one moment can connect the people we meet. I do believe this is true because it had happened to me before. And the debate of if we do believe that the universe plays an important role in our lives, for me I do feel its more truer because I always make small choices that changes every thing and if I do not make any choices at all, we will always be where we will be.


To read The Sun is Also a Star is to have an open heart and mind. Skeptics might get turn off by this book but I do feel this needs to be given a chance. Its a 4 & 1/2 out of 5 star rating for me. That missing 1/2 star would be added if not that I felt the exchange of dialogue between the two main characters weren't strong enough. I do recommend that this is a must read in one single sitting (I took too long and should have read it in a day or two but due to work, it takes longer than that).


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review 2017-03-27 21:18
Interesting Book That I Had a Hard Time Believing
Everything, Everything - Nicola Yoon

First off, I did like the writing except for the twist and I loved the illustrations in the book which made it jump off the page more for me. But I ultimately found this book boring and there was not enough information for me to make me happy with certain characters and their development. When we do get to the twist aspect had a hard time with it and the ramifications of if after the fact. It just didn't feel believable to me at all.


So I bought and read this book because I know that the movie about this book is coming out I believe this year. It has some of my favorite actresses in it, so I was interested in reading the book first. 


Image result for everything everything movie


My enjoyment of YA books that are turned into movies later has been miss so far, and I think I would rate this one half a miss. It's not aggravating like "The Fault in Our Stars" and I don't hate the whole world after finishing it like "Divergent". 


"Everything Everything" is told from the first person POV of Madeline Whittier. Maddy is about to be 18 years old and unlike other girls her age she is dealing with a constant fear of death. She suffers from a rare disorder that has her allergic to everything in the outside world that most people would never even think of at all. Due to this, she has never left her home and instead has a stay at home nurse that monitors her along with her mother who is also a doctor. When a family moves into the house next door, Maddy starts to take an interest in the outside world again and finds herself falling in love with the boy (Olly) who made her want to leave her home. 


I did like Maddy but have to say that I had a hard time with her being as nosy as she was with Olly about his life and his family and not wanting to tell him for the longest time about her condition. When she eventually starts to let Olly in I just shook my head since you would think that tact is something that Maddy would have learned. Sometimes Yoon acts as if Maddy is some alien that has dropped onto our planet for the first time and other times she has her older than her years. Though Maddy has online tutors and even a teacher who comes to her to review her work, it's not like she has never spoken to other people before.


When Olly pushes his way into Maddy's world, I actually liked him though I once again had a hard time with the boy next door thing. I wish that Maddy had been able to interact with Olly and his family more instead of us just getting glimpses of what was going on via Maddy's comments. But I have to say that Yoon does write a realistic teen romance. Though I have to say that Olly being into parkour was a new one on me. 


Other characters are not very well developed in this book though. For example, Maddy's mother felt like a big fat goose egg to me. I got more out of Maddy and her interactions with Carla. Maddy's mother seemed to want to keep her to being the same child and didn't want her to change or have any interests at all. 


The writing was good though. I have to say the back and forth between Maddy and Olly was great and at times heartbreaking. I loved the illustrations in the book too. It really came alive for me and I thought they were cute and at times sad depending on what Maddy was talking about in that chapter.


The ending though I don't know. I am happy for it in a way, but in another way I wish that maybe Maddy had chosen a different path. I can't get into it without going into spoilers though. 


See below for spoilers regarding why honestly this book was a straight up 3 star read besides what I have gone to above. 


So here is why I had a hard time giving this book 5 stars. How the heck did Carla or even Maddy never question the fact that no doctor ever came by to see Maddy. She has a rare condition. You are telling me that no one would come to talk to her about studies or see how she's progressing? The whole book strained credibility for me due to things like that. I just didn't buy it. 


I also hated how Maddy's mom was just given an out for the whole thing by people talking about mental illness. I don't know what she is suffering from because Yoon never spells it out for you. And since you don't know what happened to Maddy's father and brother besides them being dead, I have a hard time with her breaking with reality like she did. They had to have been murdered or something right? Well you never find out so enjoy the book. 

(spoiler show)
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review 2017-03-15 01:45
Insgesamt sehr schön
The Sun is also a Star.: Ein einziger Tag für die Liebe - Nicola Yoon,Dominique Falla,Susanne Klein

Natascha lebt seit sie acht Jahre alt ist als illegale Einwanderin mit ihrer Familie in Amerika. Weil ihr Vater alkoholisiert am Steuer erwischt wird, werden sie entdeckt und sollen nun abgeschoben werden. Genauer gesagt, heute Abend. Natascha will sich damit aber nicht abgeben, sie will ihre Zukunft nicht verlieren. So begibt sie sich zu einem Termin.
Am gleichen Tag hat Daniel ein Vorstellungsgespräch mit einem Yale-Absolventen. Er verlässt das Haus früher als sonst, um seiner Mutter zu entkommen und ist eigentlich gerade auf dem Weg zum Friseur. Viele Zufälle reihen sich aneinander und Daniel und Natascha begegnen sich. Oder war es doch Schicksal?

Daniel ist ein total Gefühlsduseliger Kerl, der Gedichte schreibt und Koreaner. Natascha kommt eigentlich aus Jamaika und für sie besteht die Welt nur aus Fakten. Bis eben Daniel auftaucht. Doch sie will sich nicht eingestehen, dass sie Gefühle hat und wehrt sich wehement dagegen.

An sich ist die Story wirklich gut. Gerade die Frage, ob die beiden ein Paar werden, Natascha abgeschoben wird und Daniel überhaupt noch zu seinem Termin geht, bleiben bis zum Schluss unbeantwortet. Der Schreibstil ist sehr gefühlsbetont, jede noch so kleine Gefühlsregung wird akribisch beschrieben. Insgesamt ergibt sich ein schönes Ganzes. Mir persönlich hat der Stil insgesamt nicht ganz so gut gefallen. Die Kapitel sind mit 1/2 - 4 Seiten extrem kurz und es gibt immer mal wieder "Zwischensequenzen" wo ein Stück aus dem Leben der Randcharaktere erzählt wird, oder irgendwelche Fremdwörter erklärt werden. Mir gefiel zwar der Rundumblick ganz gut, doch ich kann keine so kurzen Kapitel leiden. Die nehmen dem Buch den Fluss und lassen es abgehackt wirken. Auch die Erklärungen der Wörter mögen für manche zwar ganz hilfreich sein, aber wenn man irgendwann mal Big Bang Theory geschaut, oder den Physikunterricht in den Klassenstufen 11 bis 13 besucht hat, stören die eher.

Auch bei der Story sebst ist für mich nicht alles perfekt gewesen. Immer wieder fühlt man sich, als ob 2 Teenies ein Drama á la Nicholas Sparks nachspielen wollen und viel zu oft ertappt man sich bei dem Gedanken, dass die Beiden sich erst ein paar Stunden kennen und schon schtreiten wie ein altes Ehepaar. Oft wirkt es sehr aufgesetzt und damit leider unglaubwürdig, was den Zauber des Buchs gewaltig beeinträchtigt.


Insgesamt ist das Buch wirklich in Ordnung und als seichte Kost für zwschenurch perfekt geeignet. Wer aber sein Hirn beim Lesen nicht abschaltet, wird an diesem Buch eher weniger Freude haben.

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review 2017-03-03 19:20
The Sun is Also a Star Review
The Sun Is Also a Star - Nicola Yoon

Oh, boy. Here we go.

Few things you should know before I go on with my review. 

a) I'm not this book's target audience, but I have enjoyed books in this genre. 

b) I know good writing when I see it. Unfortunately, I did see any in here. This is bare-minimum, barely-scratch-the-surface, creative-writing-course prose. It's a heavy outline, is what it is. Bland narratives do not a happy reader make.

c) I actually thought I'd like this premise. That's why I requested a copy for review. Thanks to Crown Publishing for the chance to read this for free. I always feel bad when I have to shit on a freebie, but I can't help it. I couldn't enjoy the premise because the writing and chapter length was maddening.

Having chapters with fewer words than the ingredients on a bag of lettuce is fucking annoying. No. Scratch that. It's infuriating. If it's one thing a writer should never do is go full James Patterson. Nicola Yoon went full Patterson. The book is written in this Twitter-post-length style that is aggravating and distracting. The moment you start to get a feel for a situation a new chapter from a different POV comes along and fistfucks the flow of the book. 

Yoon tells you why these characters are different, but they never feel different, unless of course she's writing in broken English, then I guess it's kinda obvious the main characters aren't the ones talking. If you've seen Margaret Cho do an impersonation of her mother, you'll recognize some of the dialogue.

From the author: I wrote this book for anyone who's ever desperately searched for meaning. For everyone who asks the big questions. For all the dreamers and questioners.

You know what I'm searching for and questioning and dreaming of? Where everyone is in this book. There's no details of their surroundings. At one point she mentions a theater and the description tells us that the place was small, what the marquee said, and that tickets were fifteen bucks. WHAT THE FUCK DID THE PLACE LOOK LIKE, YOON? Oh, right, we've all been in a theater so fuck us, right? There's also some repetition with the word small. Everything is "very small" or "too small". Well, not Everything, Everything (see what I did there? The author's first book is... Never mind.), but a lot of stuff is "too small" or "very small", and so was my patience with this book. My patience was so too very small that it was minuscule to nonexistent. 

In summation: Requesting this book was a mistake. But not because it's not my genre of choice or anything I could have known before opening the book itself. I guess I could've saved my time and effort by checking the Look Inside on Amazon. So my bad. Yoon and I definitely do not gel. I'll pass on anything else from her.

Final Judgment: Introducing the new YA novel, now with 50% less words and 3,000,000% more chapters!

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review 2017-03-02 03:30
Review: Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon
Everything, Everything - Nicola Yoon

Quick review for a quick read. So I have complicated feelings about this book. I liked it, but that's not to say that I didn't feel like there were issues that needed addressing more thoroughly (and the fact it has quite more than enough problematic points to articulate in the mix of things). This book skirts the issues of mental illness as well as having an all consuming rare sickness far too lightly for my liking. I think it needed much more depth to really sell the story and could've potentially done so in a much better way than it did, even considering this is written for a teen audience. For a while, despite some cheesiness and some significant plot holes, I was enjoying this novel, enough to rate it at a 3.5 to 4 stars. It's a story with cute romantic chemistry, easy to read banter, and beautiful illustrations. But then the ending...eh. I'll get to that in a bit.

Maddy is a young woman who's been sick all of her life. She's allergic to the world around her, as diagnosed by her mother, a doctor who hires a nurse (Carla) to tend to Maddie when she's away. Maddy doesn't question her mother's dedication or words to her, hence she's in a bubble. I don't blame her for not knowing any better about the situation she's in, and I like the fact she's a bookish girl who has a natural curiosity about the world around her. When Olly moves into the house next to Maddy's, the two of them hit it off relatively quickly. ("Ba-da-da-da, I'm an instalove machine, and I won't work for nobody but yooou...") I thought I'd be annoyed with this, but surprisingly, I was flying through this novel - the chemistry between the leads does feel real (if a bit fragmented). I liked Carla's character too, she seemed a really compassionate character and I liked Maddy's interactions with her.

I flew through the narrative admittedly because of the narrative style and the illustrations within the book - it was a cool way to present the story. Yet, as the story went towards the ending, my suspension of disbelief only extended so far. The revelation about Maddy's situation didn't make the twist in the story all that strong to me, because I was left wanting more and feeling like the center of that twist was relatively unaddressed and skirted over. While I was relieved for Maddy herself, I still felt this story dropped a hard ball, missing developing the characters and situations in order to make it work and just feel like it used its very serious issues just as convenient plot points.

It's a story I liked for some experiences, but I feel it left me wanting much more from it than what it told. It wasn't "everything" to me.

Overall score: 3/5 stars.

Note: I received this as an ARC from NetGalley from the publisher.

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