Review: The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Posted February 9, 2017 by Francesca in Reviews / 5 Comments

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

3.5 Stars

BOOK INFO


Released: November 1st 2016
Published by Delacorte Press
Narrator: Bahni Turpin, Dominic Hoffman, Raymond Lee
Length: 8 hrs and 4 mins
Pages: 344
Format: Audiobook
 

“THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR is still a powerful, moving read and I’m very happy that I gave this author a try.”
~ Under the Covers

I’m so conflicted about this book!  I really went into it wanting to love it.  I’ve seen lots of raving reviews and the subject matter seemed like it would be a nice and deep book to get my claws into.  And in many ways it was!  Which is what makes writing this review so conflicting.  I loved a lot about it!  But there were some things that I just couldn’t completely get behind, which ultimately made me give this book a lower rating than I would’ve.  Here’s why…

What I loved about it:

  • The writing.  This is my first read by Nicola Yoon but it was definitely easy to get swept up into the world she’s creating and the characters you are getting to know.  It felt very …. real life.
  • The social issues.  I think that’s the most powerful thing about this story.  It’s dealing with a lot of very real issues that many people go through daily and it does it so well!  Natasha, the heroine, is a Jamaican illegal immigrant living in New York.  Her family is being deported by the end of the day.  On this last day in NYC she meets Daniel, a Korean-American, who is struggling with his own internal issues of following in the career path that his family expects him to instead of his own desires.  They each are dealing with something heavy already.  Natasha, with immigration and her own family’s issues between her parents.  Daniel with the pressures and expectations of his family and community being a first generation Korean-American.  These are heavy enough on their own, and I think the author does a great job at showing us their individual sides and struggles.  And then there’s the romance.  Obviously race is a factor between them.  Daniel’s family and community would never accept him to be with a black girl, and this is also handled very well.  I have to give props to the author for taking on so many things and making this a story that had so much character depth.  While this is my favorite thing about this book, it just couldn’t be the only thing that made me give it a higher rating.

What didn’t quite work as much as I was hoping for:

  • The romance.  This is the hardest blow to my rating because this book is essentially a love story!  Sadly I know a lot of people say that the author manages to really make you believe in this wonderful tale of love at first sight and the deep connection that develops between the main characters in just 24 hours.  There is a connection.  I wanted to believe it.  I just … didn’t think it was enough for it to be love at first sight and all that jazz.  Had there been more than 24 hours then yes, I would be totally on board with their connection moving further and developing deeper feelings.  But I’m one of those people that don’t really believe that easily in love at first sight.   As much as I was hoping this book would prove the reviewers that said it accomplished it…it didn’t for me.
  • The ending.  It was all a bit anticlimactic to say the least when we speed through what happens after the 24 hours are over and then how it abruptly ends with what I consider is a bit of an open end.  Sooooooo, what happened after that???  The reader is left to assume a lot of things about the future and the resolution of the lives of these two characters and it felt too open ended for me.  I wanted a more solid resolution after being so invested in the outcome.

THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR is still a powerful, moving read and I’m very happy that I gave this author a try.  It’s a story that will make you think and see things from a lot of different perspectives.  Not just social issues, but having dreams and desires, hopes, religion, making the right decisions in life, the effects of those decisions on others’ lives.  A lot of the issues that all the characters in this story go through I’m very familiar with myself either in a personal way or through some of my closest friends, and the author really excelled at presenting them.  This is not a “rose glasses” kind of story and it shows the world as hard and often cruel as it can be.  I think overall, I’ll definitely be looking for more of this authors’ work.

Favorite Quotes:

“Sometimes your world shakes so hard, it’s difficult to imagine that everyone else isn’t feeling it too.”

“There’s a Japanese phrase that I like: koi no yokan. It doesn’t mean love at first sight. It’s closer to love at second sight. It’s the feeling when you meet someone that you’re going to fall in love with them. Maybe you don’t love them right away, but it’s inevitable that you will.”

“We are capable of big lives. A big history. Why settle? Why choose the practical thing, the mundane thing? We are born to dream and make the things we dream about.”

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About Nicola Yoon

-I believe in love. Really, truly.
-I'm kind of a hopeless romantic.
-I'm a proud member of the We Need Diverse Books team.
-In a former life I made jewelry.
-I love Karoake, but I cannot sing. I. Am. The. Worst. My song of choice is “Making Love out of Nothing at all” by Air Supply, because AIR SUPPLY.
-My husband makes custom notebooks. They are pretty popular.
-I hand write my first drafts.
-I keep all the empty pens.
-I was (am and always will be) a late bloomer.
-In a former life I was French. I could live entirely on wine & cheese.
-Or maybe Korean because I could live on Kimchi & Galbi too.

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Francesca

Blogger/Reviewer at Under the Covers Book Blog
I’m a 30 something sun lover living in the Big Apple (read New York).I’m a book and coffee addict and lover of all things elephants.

I get easily distracted by pictures of sexy guys and have tons of book boyfriends.I keep all my alpha males chained to my basement and guard them fiercely.*Back off bitches*I like to see Jason Momoa as a lot of those boyfriends, because ….. mmmmmmm JASON.MOMOA!

I’m a part time graphic designer (yes, everything you see on UTC has been done by me), run my husband's business from home and on a good day I’m a self appointed superwoman (she who can do it all).I love blogging with my girls and I couldn’t do it any other way!My first love is everything paranormal, but in the past few years I’ve re-learned to love contemporary romance.Every once in a while I like to mix things up with a historical romance, a steampunk or an LGBT book.Because I need variety to avoid book slumps.I don’t always need an HEA although I prefer one, and I love authors that can rip my heart out and make me ugly cry.
Francesca
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Kristy Petree
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Kristy Petree

I just finished this a few days ago! I think I unfairly compared it to Everything Everything, which I loved. This was, for me, kind of slow paced for a story that mostly takes place in one day. I also liked the social issues part. As for “love at first” sight, I do believe in it. I’ve seen it. But it didn’t feel real with these characters. Overall, I liked it well enough, except I didn’t care for the ending (mainly the time gap between their teen years and their adult years). I’d also go with 3.5 stars.

Amy R
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Amy R

Thanks for the review, I don’t reach much YA.

Elizabeth
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Elizabeth

Love the quotes! However, if you can’t really feel the love between these characters and with an anticlimactic ending I think I’ll pass. Thank you.

Bube
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Bube

I have first book Everything,Everything by Nicola Yoon,but haven’t read yet 😀
The Sun also is a star sounds good 🙂

Timitra
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Timitra

Thanks for sharing your thoughts Francesca