Age Recommended: 13 and up
“I think about black holes and blue holes and bottomless bodies of water and exploding stars and event horizons, and a place so dark that light can’t get out once it’s in”
Theodore Finch or ‘freak’ ( as he is commonly called) is an awkward young man. All he does in his free time is come up with ways to kill himself. One day, when grief-stricken Violet Markey appears at the school bell-tower, its pretty unclear who saves whose life. This one meeting is soon to transform the lives of both, Violet and Finch forever and take them on one unforgettable but heart-wrenching journey of love, live and self-discovery.
To be honest, All The Bright Places seemed to have too many over-hyped reviews before i actually grabbed a copy of this book and sat back to read it. I have always been too apprehensive about reading books that are, in any way, depressing. This book surprisingly got me turning page after page until I had reached the very end.
All The Bright Places, very beautifully yet bluntly highlights the plight of bipolar patients. In contrast with some other books of the same genre, it does not make efforts to describe bipolar disorder in fancy and flowery ways where the mind of a patient is usually swirling in dreamy worlds. The book brutally brings out the honesty pertaining to the condition of bipolar patients who suffer from constant mood swings and frequently find themselves sucked into a world of plain, intense darkness.
“I am carried off. We yield to this slow flood…. In and out, we are swept; …we can not step outside its sinuous, its hesitating, its abrupt, its perfectly encircling walls.”
― Jennifer Niven,
All The Bright Places is a beautiful tale of two depressed souls falling in love. It also focuses on the stigma associated with mental patients and how this affects them.
Frankly speaking, at first, I found the book plain, boring and hard to relate to. However, as the book went on, I found myself completely in this lovely gem of a book, its plot and the lives of its characters.
The writing style of Jennifer Niven is utterly simple but absorbing. Moreover, she very cleverly makes sure to add great depth to these plain words of hers. Get into the depths and you would surely savour every bit of the book.
This book is simply fantastic and heartbreakingly honest. A realistic story of a girl who learns to live from a boy who wants to die, go ahead if you’re looking for a great book with no frills.
“The future is uncertain, but that can be a good thing.”
― Jennifer Niven,
-Reviewed by Nandika Kaul