***This review is spoiler-free***
I did it! I finally read The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon!
Not only did I finish reading this book but I also finished reading it in three days, which says a lot for a slow reader like me.
Based on my experience of reading Nicola Yoon’s previous novel, Everything, Everything, I knew this book was going to be a quick and fun read, which is something I needed at the moment.
As you might know, if you already read my movie review on The Sun is Also a Star (if you haven’t read my thoughts on Natasha and Daniel’s love story on the big screen, then you can check it out here), I did not read the book before watching the movie. I know, I know, shame on me.
But to redeem myself (even with the slightest bit of redemption), after getting the movie tickets, I went out and bought The Sun is Also a Star book.
So yes, I knew what was going to happen when reading the book, but no, it did not ruin the book for me.
In fact, after reading this book, I felt enlightened and satisfied with the story I read and watched.
The Sun is Also a Star is about a girl named Natasha, a scientific intellectual whose family will be deported that night to Jamaica, despite living most of her life in New York City. On her last day in the United States, she sets off to do whatever she can to prevent her family from leaving … and then she meets Daniel.
Daniel is a passionate artist who loves to write poems. However, he’s following his parents’ dreams of becoming a doctor.
As fate would have it, the two of them meet. You could say they’re opposites, as Daniel believes in love and Natasha doesn’t, which leads him to try and convince Natasha to fall in love with him, unknowing that this may be her last day.
I really liked how Nicola Yoon divided up the “chapters” in the book by characters or concepts. Not only did it make the book feel like a quick-read because a “chapter” could be easily a few pages or a few lines, but I really enjoyed reading the multiple POVs (point-of-views). These “chapters” shed light on all characters in this novel, big and small. Especially with the minor characters, these “chapters” allowed readers to learn more about them and their struggles. This book wasn’t just about Natasha or Daniel or Natasha’s immigration conflict or their love story, it was a book about everyone. Every character Natasha met had an impact on her life in just a single day. Every character Natasha met had their own problems to face, their own story to tell.
I really liked how the whole fate/destiny theme surrounding the novel was reflected physically from the words on the page to the characters’ interior/exterior dialogue to the way Yoon structured the plot. Everything in this novel had a purpose. Things from the beginning of the novel were brought up in the end. Everything was explained, everything had a reason that led to the final outcome.
These plot elements served to create a chain reaction, a cause-and-effect, whatever scientific term you know that explains causality. This story proved to me what my mom always says: Everything happens for a reason.
I love stories with purposeful events. I love it when stories tie things up together with a big red bow. I love it when events in the beginning are mentioned in the end to make those events even more symbolic or meaningful to readers. It’s like an inside joke that only you and the book share. I just love the feeling when everything in the story comes together in a circular-like plot. The story feels complete, everything is explained with no loose ends and no unanswered questions. It’s satisfying.
I also really liked Natasha and Daniel’s character. They felt real and authentic and relatable. I couldn’t help but relate and agree with Daniel more though because his thoughts and passions for art were similar to mine. I mean, us starving artists have to stick together, right?
But I really liked their characters’ differences and how they complimented each other. After all, they do say opposites attract.
I love Yoon’s colloquial writing for its authenticity. I was able to hear Natasha and Daniel’s voices narrate the pages. When I read the story, there were only a few times when I verified whose “voice” I’m reading. All the other times, it was obvious to tell who was speaking, which is how I knew she did a good job at writing her characters and giving them a distinguishable voice.
If you’ve seen the movie but haven’t read the book yet, I suggest you go read the book. This book covers much more than the movie did (as usual). The movie was good at giving a general overview of what to expect from the book, the main priority being Natasha and Daniel’s love story, but the book made me better understand the story, the characters, the whole universe that Nicola Yoon created. Any questions that felt unanswered in the movie were answered here.
So if you’re looking for a fun, quick and refreshing read this summer or a star-crossed love story, then this story is for you! If you enjoyed Everything, Everything, then you should also check this one out!
Let me know what your thoughts are on The Sun is Also a Star in the comments below! Did you read the book? What were your thoughts on it? Did you watch the movie? Which one did you like the most?
You can find The Sun is Also a Star at your local bookstore now!