terça-feira, 14 de março de 2017

Review: The Sun is Also a Star, by Nicola Yoon

The Sun is Also a Star
by Nicola Yoon

Edition: 2016
Pages: 384
Publisher: Penguin Random House UK Children's

Summary: 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?

Rating: 3/5

I will start by saying that I received an online copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange of a honest review.

A mixed junction of fate, love, desires and teenage dreams!

Wow. I haven't read much lately and due to many factors I find myself leaning on young adult books to overcome this reading slump with lighter reads. Which is kind of odd and even a bit funny, since I almost stopped reading young adult books a long time because I can't find myself enjoying them as much as I did in the past. Nevertheless, I'm still keen of a good story and "The Sun is Also a Star" had all the right ingredients to get my attention. Starting by the author's nationality.
Ever since I started thinking and preparing the project of the World Book Tour (now in partnership with my friends Cata and Jojo ) I started to look out not only for books representing diverse public segments but also different authors, with different experiences and a wider spectrum of analysis. And this book had it all: a Jamaican author, Jamaican characters, Korean characters, and a bit of youthful, confrontation between a magical fate and logic and some scents of the historical paths that brought two different branches of immigration to the United States of America.
It's also a test to life in general, calling the readers to decide where is the line that divides a predisposed destiny and the cadence of small happenings which, in the end, transform who we are and what are our next steps.
Firstly I considered a bit annoying all the parallel stories to which I couldn't find a reason for them to appear constantly, since they interrupted the main plot quite often and line of the story I was designing on my mind. Therefore, I understood near the end their purpose and I could even understand the little magic created from them. It's amazing to conceal how small moments and differences can change someone's life! Nevertheless, they weren't my favourite part of the story for sure.
Natasha and Daniel couldn't be more different from each other. That's why it's so lovely to find them in love, surpassing the inconveniences of family's expectations, emotional baggage, a timeline they can't avoid and their personal insights about how life should be or shouldn't be lived.
 It's a love story, but it's also a bit more than that, fruitfully resulting from the dimensions created by their family stories. In the middle of all the unbelievable situations and actions during that 24 hours, that elements added new memories and moments for both of them to cherish. This book also adds a dimension of real life, when discussing that being a teenage is not always so easy as it seams, since many of the major decisions responsible for defining our future are taken so early.
Because of that, I felt there was a realm of reality claiming to make the readers think about what they are expecting to build on their paths (or what they did in the past) and what it means at the present moment. It's also a lucky charm against blue days, because I doubt that someone isn't going to fall for Daniel, he has that spirituous and free mind we all would like to keep on us (even just a little) every time we see ourselves on the mirror, besides he is a dearest and it's impossible not to smile at his blind faith in the world.
Finally, I enjoyed the last chapter, it felt realistic and honest and as sincere as it could get. Until the author decided to add that small plot twist at the very last. Even if I still understand why she did it, I find it a bit pushed. I just hope her choice was done due the need to create a more enjoyable ending for her readers and not because she thought her readers couldn't handle a bit of factual happenings and life in general. Because every young person conscious about the world knows life isn't perfect and many times isn't fair either. But it always teach us something and leave marks to never be forgotten. If not by memory, at least by heart.

About the author:
Addicted to the library Claudia loves to read on the move and we can usually find her sitting in a train or bus reading while commuting to and from work. But don't be fooled she is also keeping an eye on the landscape and all around her. She is an avid defender of sustainability and volunteering and it's as easy to find her starting a new project as it is to find her chatting with her friends. She is a dreamer and loves good stories so she keeps looking for them in her personal life.

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