Title: The Sun is Also a Star
Author: Nicola Yoon
Genre: YA Contemporary
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
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?
I loved Nicola Yoon's debut, and I'm so glad to say that I enjoyed this one so much as well. I don't think I enjoyed it more than Everything, Everything but enough to solidify Yoon as an auto-read author for me. While the book was a quick read (for me, mostly because I devoured it in one night) it was still a deep and complex story.
Characters: One thing about Nicola Yoon is that she always writes great characters. We have Natasha: factual, scientific, no nonsense. Then we have Daniel: poet, dreamer. Both voices were unique and different. Sometimes dual POVs have a tendency to sound alike, but Daniel and Natasha were different enough that I could always tell who I was reading. Both characters are children of immigrants. Daniel is struggling under the high expectations of his parents for his future. Natasha is trying to prevent her family from getting deported. As a child of immigrants myself, I felt that I could relate to them. It was so great to see some of my experiences (realistically) on page. I related to both Natasha and Daniel in different ways, and while you may not agree or like some of their decisions, it is easy to see where they are coming from.
Writing: Nicola's writing was beautiful in this story as well. Lyrical and attention-grabbing, even while keeping the differences between scientific Natasha and artistic Daniel. In this story, we also get POVs from all sorts of different people (and even a few objects) and while I know some people did not like those, I did. It was an interesting choice, but added a lot to the story. Sometimes we don't think of the background characters, the ones we only pass by, or have the tiniest interaction with, and it was interesting to get these little snippets from them as well.
Plot: The story takes place over the course of one day. I'm not the hugest fan of insta-love, but this seemed extreme. There were a few plot things I didn't like, but I was mostly able to ignore that for the characters. I guess if over-the-top romances are your thing, then you will like this. But this book tackled a lot of big issues too - racism, immigration, even religion.
In the end, this was a wonderfully complex, deep, even emotional book that I would definitely recommend.
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