Read about the children's and young adult books that I read.
Friday, April 28, 2017
All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
There are many YA novels about unlikely couples that make you fall in love with them and then break your heart (and by you, I mean you the reader). This is one of them, but you will love Violet and Finch so much that you will happily go along for the ride. They meet on top of the school bell tower, both contemplating suicide. Finch, the misfit kid, actually talks Violet off the ledge (literally), but later lets Violet take the credit for saving his life. Violet, a previously popular girl, has been traumatized by a car accident that took her sister's life and spared her own. Finch is sarcastic, intelligent, and perceptive, but suffers from bipolar disorder. His family either doesn't see the problem or refuses to acknowledge it, and in spite of many cries for help, he never gets the support he needs. Finch immediately is drawn to Violet, but has to convince her that he is worth her time (as he is the target of harassment at school he isn't immediately seen as boyfriend material). As they wander around Indiana for a school project, it's clear that they are going to fall in love and that it's not going to be easy. It seemed formulaic at first, but with characters so well fleshed out, who cares? If you like The Fault in Our Stars and Eleanor and Park (both compelling teen relationship books), you will definitely want to read All the Bright Places. Recommended for high school students-up.