I decided to make my first actual post on this blog a review for All the Bright Places because since the moment I set the book down I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it.
Author: Jennifer Niven
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Publisher: Penguin Random House
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.
First and foremost, I would just like to state that this book should come with a few trigger warnings, but it does not. So before reading this, please note: TRIGGER WARNING – SUICIDE AND SUICIDAL THOUGHTS/ATTEMPTS, ABUSE/BULLYING, AND DEPRESSION.
With that out of the way I do want to say that aside from the lack of trigger warnings for this book, the story is absolutely entrancing. As someone who has dealt with my fair share of emotional and mental trauma I felt an immediate attachment to the characters in this novel. I have to be honest, I found myself feeling very depressed while reading this book but I find the message to be so important.
This book evokes a plethora of emotions from the reader. There are happy moments, sad moments, and completely heart shattering moments, but that is the what is so beautiful about it. It’s real and true to high school life. In fact, some of the things the characters say are things I remember thinking to myself when I was in high school.
One line in particular that stands out to me is:
“We can’t always see what others don’t want us to. Especially when they go to great lengths to hide it.”
This line is so incredibly important, if only for the fact that it makes you think. When I read this line initially I thought of the dark corners of my own mind I’ve kept hidden from the world but as I thought about it more I began to think of all of the people I’ve ever known. I realized that everyone (even the people that might bully you or even make you feel suicidal like the characters in this book) has a life that no one else knows about. Everyone has secrets and everyone has a story that belongs to only them.
I believe this is one of the most important lessons you could take from this book, on top of so many others. But you should find your own meanings and lessons as you read!
So, if you decide to pick up this book (which you should totally do, because it is remarkable) let me know you did and share your thoughts with me on Twitter! My links are on my blogs home page.
Xoxo – Karleigh