Review: ‘All the Bright Places’ by Jennifer Niven

All the Bright Places has been hyped since it’s first been released in 2015 (yes – I am super late to the party), and I was kind of reluctant to read it as it was so hyped. But eventually, I decided to pick it up and read it within under a week. But did it live up to the hype?

Author: Jennifer Niven
Genre: YA Contemporary/Sicklit
Publisher: Knopf
Release Date: Januari 6th, 2015
Pages: 378
Spoilers: Nope, no spoilers, as I don’t want to ruin this book for you, eventhough it’s super hyped and almost everybody knows what it’s about.
Rating: 4.0 Stars (4.0 / 5)

Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him.
Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death.
When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the “natural wonders” of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself—a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink.”
[Goodreads]

Book cover of All the Bright Places.
Find more pictures via Instagram.

Poetic writing

When I started reading this book, I was immediately captured by Jennifer Niven’s poetic writing style. The sentences seemed to be floating and as a reader you feel as if every word is picked out very carefully. You can just feel how much love and work Jennifer’s put into this book. This really makes reading All the Bright Places an amazing joy.

However, at the same time, this bothered me. Not only does Niven write poetic, it seems that her main characters are just as poetic as she is. And this is odd, because her main characters are high school students who are both note sure what to do with their lives. The fact that they are so poetic doesn’t make them come across as believable characters. And that’s unfortunate, because for all their other character traits, they are totally realistic.

Build up

The build up of the book is very slow: not much seems to be happening at the beginning. As a reader, you slowly ease into the story and get to know the characters. The ending is the total opposite as it is sudden and quick. Although I saw it coming, it was still a surprise it happens the way it does. And it is totally heartbreaking to read. I believe that this – the sudden ending – makes the book so good. As a reader you’re totally caught of guard.

Book cover of All the Bright Places.
Find more pictures via Instagram.

In conclusion

In the end, this book really touched me. I believe it is one of those one in a million books that really gets people to rethink everything that has happened in the book. It’s written well, it has good characters and a nice pace. If you are a fan of John Green and Rainbow Rowell, All the Bright Places is right up your alley!

Amazing news! All the Bright Places is going to be a Netflix movie! It’s scheduled to be released by Netflix this February, but there are no trailers available yet. However, if you have Netflix, you can set a reminder on your account so you’ll get a notification once it’s available!

Nanouk Meijer

Nanouk is the founder and owner of the website. She runs the website, takes care of the lay-out, give-aways, social media, book reviews and events. She is 25 years old and graduated from 'Comparative Literature' at Utrecht University. She is Digital Product Manager at HarperCollins Holland and staff reviewer at YA Books Central. She breaths books.

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