book club

BOOK HUNGRY: the sky is everywhere

who says you have to be crowded into the living room, kitchen, and/or dining room to hold a book club? we are ladies of the 21st century. we don’t need no stinkin’ couches. so pull up a blog and join in the conversation.

the members of the BOOK HUNGRY are (alphabetically): patty blount, kelly breakey, karla nellenbach, vanessa noble, alyson peterson, cynthia reese, elizabeth ryann, and myself. here’s the deal. we pick a book to read. we discuss via email. we post a review on our individual blogs on the same day (3rd thursday of the month). we link to each other. done. i know, genius. click on each one of their names (above) and it’ll take you to their review. browse. enjoy.

this month’s BOOK HUNGRY selection is:

THE SKY IS EVERYWHERE by jandy nelson

what it’s about from amazon: When her older sister dies from an arrhythmia, 17-year-old Lennie finds that people are awkward around her, including her best friend. While dealing with her conflicted feelings toward her sister’s boyfriend, her anguish over Bailey’s unexpected death, and her sudden curiosity about sex, Lennie must also cope with her unresolved feelings about her mother, who left when Lennie was an infant. Debut author Nelson expertly and movingly chronicles the myriad, roller-coaster emotions that follow a tragedy, including Lennie’s reluctance to box up her sister’s belongings and her guilt over bursts of happiness. The portrayal of the teen’s state of mind is believable, as are the romanticizing of her absent mother and the brief scenes of underage drinking and sexual exploration. Chapters are typically anchored by brief snippets of Lennie’s writings. This is a heartfelt and appealing tale. Girls who gobble up romantic and/or weep-over fiction will undoubtedly flock to this realistic, sometimes funny, and heartbreaking story.

my opinion:

*KERPLUNK* that’s the sound of my jaw hitting the floor.

this book? oh my, this book. it is one of the MOST GORGEOUS books i’ve ever read. ever. ever. the prose is luscious, the poems are divine, the images are vivid, and throughout it all, the emotions, the love, the anger, the betrayal, the giddiness, the pain, the love! but most especially the grief, are tangible. plain and simple, the story and the characters are flat out orange.*

jandy doesn’t use big words. she doesn’t try to show off her intelligence or confuse you with deeper meanings. she simply picks the very best word for the story at hand and lets it radiate, and let me tell you, you’re going to need sunglasses. she is a master of both prose and poetry. it’s not fair really, i mean, there are these bits of poetry at the beginning of some chapters and OMG! if they’re not the most stunning poems i’ve ever read. they make emotion accessible. in fact, the poems wring out so much emotion, the pages drip with it and you’re doused with the excess. AND YOU WILL LIKE IT.

i haven’t even mentioned any of the relationships or specific characters because my words are pale and meager and, you guys, seriously, just pick up this book and read it. proceed with caution, but PROCEED. and quickly! you can thank me (and jandy) later.

* “orange is…the color of extraordinary.” pg.32

p.s. as an added bonus, HERE’S an interview (done by gayle forman) with jandy nelson. the authors of my two favorite books that were released in 2010. so much goodness is going on in there!


14 thoughts on “BOOK HUNGRY: the sky is everywhere”

    1. we have had a string of good reads. this one was my choice, so i thank you! i am pleased with my choice as well.

  1. If I had to write a review of this book, it’d consist of a few paragraphs of nothing but exclamation points. And if it were a hand-written review, the exclamation points will be smudged by tears. That’s all I have to say :) I freakin’ love that book and CANNOT WAIT for Jandy’s new book.

    1. i love your review. it’s exactly what i wanted to write, but you know, couldn’t articulate. thank you for reading my mind.

      and HOLD UP A SECOND, jandy’s got a new book coming??? i need details!

      1. You’re welcome :) I didn’t know I was doing it, but ok :)

        Re: new book — nothing definite, but we know she’s writing!!! From the Q&A on

        Have you begun working on your next project? If so, can you give us any hints?

        I am currently hard at work on a new YA novel about twins Noah and Jude. It’s really two novels in one and it alternates between Noah’s story, which takes place when the twins are fourteen, and Jude’s, when they’re eighteen. It’s full of secrets and lies and heartbreak and romance and love and very strong passions. Both narratives revolve around a very charismatic and mysterious sculptor who changes both the twins’ lives, and they, his. I’m excited about it—fingers crossed!

            1. umm, no. i stand by my “oh, boys!” because, twin boys. plural. get it?

              but yes, agreed with the !!! and tearstained paper.

              1. OHS, BOY is distinctly different from OH, BOYS in meaning. OH, BOYS is more literal. OHS, BOY is more idiomatic. And both apply here :)

                I just wanted to reply to this because I’m fascinated by how each time the reply box gets smaller and smaller…

  2. The color of extraordinary was the perfect description of someone who embodied so much life. I felt a little punch to the heart when I read those words because after I lost my Gram I remember thinking that the world lost some of it’s color.

    Great choice Abbs…I always love it when a book makes me think and this one had me thinking all last night.

    1. the way jandy describes grief is so vivid and gut wrenching, it makes portions of this book difficult to read, and for that, i apologize. you are a trooper to keep reading when you were faced with so many memories of your Gram. but, i am glad that it gave you another reason to remember the special lady and all that she added to your life.


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