The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

by - October 09, 2017

Adrift after her sister Bailey's sudden death, Lennie finds herself torn between quiet, seductive Toby—Bailey's boyfriend who shares her grief—and Joe, the new boy in town who bursts with life and musical genius. Each offers Lennie something she desperately needs... though she knows if the two of them collide her whole world will explode.

Join Lennie on this heartbreaking and hilarious journey of profound sorrow and mad love, as she makes colossal mistakes and colossal discoveries, as she traipses through band rooms and forest bedrooms and ultimately right into your heart.

As much a celebration of love as a poignant portrait of loss, Lennie's struggle to sort her own melody out of the noise around her is always honest, often uproarious, and absolutely unforgettable.


Lennie finds herself lost, after the sudden death of her sister Bailey. Having nobody to turn to, it feels as though she’s drowning in her own sorrow. Desperate to have someone to talk to, who understands her sorrow, Lennie forms an unlikely bond with someone we’re least expecting OR maybe not that unexpected) …

This was Jandy Nelson’s debut into the Young Adult scene? Talk about making an entrance! Her writing was lyrical and full of emotion. She spent time describing scenes and sensations, which further helped to transport me into her world. Her descriptions were used as a way to link you to what is happening and tug at your heart strings. 

“In photographs of us together, she is always looking at the camera, and I am always looking at her.” 

Being Bailey’s sister was what Lennie thought of herself. She was the dusty old coin, while Bailey was the shiny gold coin that everyone wanted to have or at least say they’ve touched. Having an absent mother, meant that the sisters only had each other. Suddenly, and without warning, it’s just Lennie. This is what made me fall in love with this book. While grieving, you don’t people to feel sorry for you, to pity you and suddenly speak to you because they feel obligated to.

“I wonder why bereaved people even bother with mourning clothes when the grief itself provides such an unmistakable wardrobe.”

So, to protect yourself from their stares, you pretend that you’re fine because it’s easier that way. Lennie’s hurting but she doesn’t want to have to explain this hurt to the world because it still doesn’t make sense. 

“Who wants to know that the person you love and need the most can just vanish forever”. 

Not really knowing what to do after the death of her sister, Lennie acts on impulse. She does things without thinking them through and considering the repercussions. For some, she is reckless and selfish. But to me, she was sad, lost and confused, and she just wanted to feel. Anything. 

“When I’m with him, there is someone with me in my house of grief, someone who knows its architecture as I do, who can walk with me, from room to sorrowful room, making the whole rambling structure of wind and emptiness not quite as scary, as lonely as it was before”.

This is a love that was doomed from the start. But with each turning page, you can understand why she’s desperately latching onto him because he’s the only one that really understands. Together, their broken hearts become one. 

“… and the cloak of being fine that I wear with everyone else slips right off my shoulders”

The Sky is Everywhere is beautifully written, with wonderful character developments and flaws that make them human. All the characters existed within their own right, but added to the richness of the story. We have the bereaved Toby, the swoon worthy and new boy in town Joe, her estranged best friend, her quirky grandmother Gram who has an affinity for flowers and reading people and her larger than life uncle Big. I loved this book because we experienced Lennie’s grief with her, how everything spiralled and how she tried to save herself from her grief, her love, her loss and ultimately, herself. 

Lennie’s life in one sentence: “I wish my shadow would get up and walk beside me.” 

- Christine

Side Note: I, Tina, reviewed this book a while back on my previous blog, making it clear I wasn't a fan. But, when I gave the book to Christine a few months ago, she LOVED it. I was taken back to see the huge amount of encouragement and joy this book filled her with and decided that perhaps she should write her own review regarding how she felt. 

This experience only proves that we are all different and we all like certain elements of books. Be open to other opinions and respect everyone's love for a book that they will treasure forever.  

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