I’ll Give You the Sun

“A blazing, prismatic explosion of color . . . Nelson’s gifts in tackling huge subjects — death, grief, all-consuming love — with humor and gravitas will draw comparisons to the two reigning superstars of non-apocalyptic YA lit, John Green and Rainbow Rowell. But the intensity of her writing stands alone . . . Whether you’re at that age right now or you’ve forgotten what it feels like, I’ll Give You the Sun is that rare, immersive teen novel: To read it is a coming-of-age experience in itself.”

Entertainment Weekly

★”Nelson’s prose is replete with moments of stunning emotional clarity, and her characters are as irresistible to the reader as they are to each other, particularly young Noah, whose vulnerability is laced with an enviable sense of the aesthetic raptures of everyday life. The controlling ethos throughout, though, is love: no matter how they hurt each other, the love among all the characters is huge here—huge enough to destroy, huge enough to forgive, and huge enough to put their broken world back together again.”

BCCB, Starred Review

★”A resplendent novel . . . Art and wonder fill each page.”

—School Library Journal, Starred Review

“Readers are meant to feel big things, and they will—Nelson’s novel brims with emotion.”

Publishers Weekly, starred review

★”Nelson structures her sophomore novel brilliantly, alternating between Noah’s first-person narrative in the years before . . . and Jude’s in the years following, slowly revealing the secrets the siblings hide from each other and the ways they each throw their hearts into their artwork. In an electric style evoking the highly visual imaginations of the young narrators, Nelson captures the fraught, antagonistic, yet deeply loving relationship Jude and Noah share.”

Booklist, Starred Review

“The novel is structurally brilliant, moving back and forth across timelines to reveal each teen’s respective exhilaration and anguish  . . . Nelson’s prose scintillates . . . dizzyingly visual . . . startling physicality . . . Here’s a narrative experience readers won’t soon forget.”


I’ll Give You the Sun is a daydream . . . otherworldly, and mesmerizing . . . Nelson’s evocative language envelops one’s imagination . . . an exquisite surrender to wonder and possibilities.”

The Boston Globe

“Breathtaking. You get the sense [the] characters are bursting through the words, breaking free of normal metaphors and constructions, jubilantly trying to rise up from the prison of language . . . The book celebrates art’s capacity to heal, but it also shows us how we excavate meaning from the art we cherish, and how we find reflections of ourselves within it . . . I’ll Give You the Sun is a dazzling mirror.”

The New York Times

Sun is so much more than just another teenage love story with Real Life Themes; it’s a meditation on life, art, family, fate, and how even the most broken people can help fix one another. Like an artist with a paintbrush, Jandy Nelson weaves it all together to create a reading experience that can only be described as synesthetic. You can taste Noah’s passion, hear the echo of Jude’s grief, and feel the words leap off the page and whip across your face like grains of sand in the wind. This book will tear through you like a hurricane, leaving you in ruined awe. If you want to remember what it’s like to truly surrender to a book and let it pull you under like a riptide, pick up I’ll Give You the Sun and bask in it.”

The Huffington Post

“Ingeniously told from the alternating perspectives of its spunky twin protagonists, this (technically) young adult novel jubilantly holds its own against the fall’s grown-up offerings, with dead-on insights about surviving youth—and family.”

O, the Oprah Magazine

“A book I’ll continue to recommend for the rest of the year and beyond . . . Picking up clues and peeling back layers page-by-page is an unforgettable experience. I’ll Give You the Sun captures several complicated relationships in one remarkable story that has me wondering if it has left an indelible mark on my mind.  I hope so.”

—Amazon, Editor’s choice for the Spotlight Pick of the Best Books of September

“A gravity-defying, life-affirming experience.”

San Francisco Magazine

“Dynamic . . . (Nelson) has an electrifying facility with description, especially of how her characters feel at a given moment . . . (Jude), Noah and the fine cast of subsidiary characters . . . are most memorable for how poignantly they illustrate the most basic of human emotions — love, grief, shame, remorse, joy.”

Chicago Tribune

“Gives the word “intense” new meaning . . . I’ll Give You the Sun is a novel that makes you want to go out and skydive, but if you can read a novel like this now and then, you don’t need to.”


“Occasionally, I’ve gotten so involved in a book that I’ve missed my subway stop because I was reading; Jandy Nelson’s I’ll Give You the Sun might be the first time where I saw my stop and skipped it anyway . . . Give is a breathtaking novel about secrets—how keeping them can destroy us and releasing them can set us free. Yet for all its dark moments (which include suicide attempts, sexual assault, and infidelity), the writing is suffused with playfulness and love. Nelson manages the nearly impossible task of keeping the reader on constant tenterhooks, yet never letting us doubt that she has the best interest of all her characters at heart . . . But what really sets Give apart from other YA novels is its writing. Nelson doesn’t pander to her readers. Her sentences and structure are complex and imaginative. If you enjoy the high-intensity pace of young-adult writing, but often find yourself wishing for a semi-colon or a mind-blowing metaphor, Ill Give You the Sun is the book for you.”

The Daily Beast

“This book is about many things: grief, sexuality, creativity, bravery, identity, guilt. But mostly it’s about love. Be prepared with more tissues than you needed for The Fault in Our Stars, a chunky notebook to scribble down all the quotes and a handful of witty responses when people ask why you’re chuckling to yourself in the corner. Because this book will make you realise how beautiful words can be.”

The Guardian

“(A) super-smart coming-of-age story . . . you’ll feel this book in a big way.”

Teen Vogue

“The story is full of compelling, big characters who are fully saturated with emotion and witticisms and are also industrious and creative; Jude sculpts, and Noah paints. Charting the spectrum of mountainous teenage emotion, and though written vibrantly, it remains believable, tenable and real.”

The Globe and Mail

“One of Fall’s most anticipated YA books . . . While the novel falls under YA, it’s filled with complex and controversial themes that are relatable to anyone who has struggled with identity, sexuality, family ties and other struggles of growing up.”


“This one is going to be big . . . It is full of all the good stuff that sticks with you: love, identity struggles, loss, betrayal, and the complications of family, so you’ll . . . feel all the feels.”


“An examination of finding and learning what it means to live for yourself . . . compelling to the very end.”

RT Book Reviews

“This is a beautifully written story.”


From fellow Authors:

“A wild, beautiful, and profoundly moving novel. Jandy Nelson’s writing is so electric, so alive, her pages practically glow in the dark.”

—Ransom Riggs, New York Times bestselling author of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and Hollow City

“Jandy Nelson is a rare, explosive talent. Her prose is vivid, breathtaking, and drenched in passion, and her stories remind me why words can change the world.”

—Tahereh Mafi, New York Times bestselling author of the Shatter Me series

“An extraordinary book! I’ve never read anything like it. Lyrical-unique-passionate-magical-tragic-hopeful—Nelson’s characters will fly off the page and into your heart.”

— Nancy Garden, author of Annie on My Mind

“Jandy Nelson’s writing is poetic and mesmerizing. More importantly, Nelson weaves a novel that seeps into your bones like fire on a cold day . . . I’ll Give You the Sun is a novel that promises a story like nothing else and then delivers it.”

— Garret Freymann-Weyr, author of Printz Honor book My Heartbeat

“I love this book. Jandy Nelson is my new writing hero. Read it. She’ll be your favorite author as well.”

— Holly Goldberg Sloan, New York Times bestselling author of Counting by 7s

“This is a stunning, artfully woven story. My heart burst open at the blazing, unforgettable end. Magnificent.”

—Nova Ren Suma, author of Imaginary Girls and 17 & Gone

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