The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
Publisher: Dial Books, March 2010
Rating: 5/5 stars
Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old Lennie Walker, bookworm and band geek, plays second clarinet and spends her time tucked safely and happily in the shadow of her fiery older sister, Bailey. But when Bailey dies abruptly, Lennie is catapulted to center stage of her own life – and, despite her nonexistent history with boys,
suddenly finds herself struggling to balance two. Toby was Bailey’s boyfriend; his grief mirrors Lennie’s own.Joe is the new boy in town, a transplant from Paris whose nearly magical grin is matched only by his musical talent. For Lennie, they’re the sun and the moon; one boy takes her out of her sorrow, the other comforts her in it. But just like their celestial counterparts, they can’t collide without the whole wide world exploding.
This remarkable debut is perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Francesca Lia Block. Just as much a celebration of love as it is a portrait of loss, Lennie’s struggle to sort her own melody out of the noise around her is always honest, often hilarious, and ultimately unforgettable.
I recommend this book. Nelson’s debut novel is a work of art. I am not a huge fan of reading poetry, but the bits of poetry in the book helped me understand Lennie, the narrator, and her struggles. My favorite poem is in chapter 28.
Here’s a contemplative quote: “How will I survive this missing? How do others do it? People die all the time. Every day. Every hour. There are families all over the world staring at beds that are no longer slept in, shoes that are no longer worn. Families that no longer have to buy a particular cereal, a kind of shampoo. There are people everywhere standing in line at the movies, buying curtains, walking dogs, while inside, their hearts are ripping to shreds. For years. For their whole lives. I don’t believe time heals. I don’t want it to. If I heal, doesn’t that mean I’ve accepted the world without her?” (pg 168)
On page 220, I guessed that Joe would show up with someone to see the movie as well as Lennie and Sarah. Joe showed up with Rachel and he put his arm around her on purpose.
Joe and Lennie’s love is powerful and I feel like they would be together for a eternity.