The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I’d like to preface this by acknowledging that just because I didn’t enjoy it doesn’t mean you won’t. With that having been said, this book single-handedly put me off of reading contemporary for several months.
The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon is a contemporary romance novel taking place over the course of a day featuring teenagers Daniel Jae Ho Bae and Natasha Kingsley. They meet through a series of freak coincidences and proceed to fall in love as Daniel follows Natasha around New York City, unaware that this might be her last day in the US. Now let me share my critique.
Firstly, despite all the drama, I could not force myself to care about or like any of the characters. There were some themes that I did enjoy, but the endless stereotypes and unbelievable story overshadowed them. The best segments were the short perspectives of the side characters, as I found them insightful and frankly more interesting than Daniel’s and Natasha’s, but I certainly wouldn’t read the book just for that. Initially, I thought contemporaries might just not be for me but since then I have read several contemporaries that I greatly enjoyed, only furthering the idea for me that this is simply not worth the hype.
Without spoiling the story, there’s not much else to say but honestly, if you’re looking for an inspiring comfort read, I wouldn’t recommend this. It half-heartedly discusses fate to some extent and while I think it might be fun to analyze, it was not fun for me to read. –Review by Lizzie B. ’24
***** 4 STARS *****
Written by Nicola Yoon, The Sun is Also a Star is a novel revolving around two young adults Natasha and Daniel, who fall in love despite the numerous obstacles that come their way. First, Daniel is Korean and Natasha is African-American, which is a racial difference they believe their families would not approve of. Moreover, Natasha is an undocumented immigrant and is to be deported the exact day they meet, forcing the two lovers to separate. Despite the challenges they face, both Natasha and Daniel attempt to make the best of their bad situations. They focus on the present and on each other, cherishing the time they have left together, instead of constantly worrying when they will have to leave each other.
This book is unique and showcases the perspective and thoughts of each character by labeling their names at the top of every page rather than being narrated from only one perspective. This allowed the reader to really feel what the lovers are feeling, and anticipate and fear what will happen to the protagonists. I would definitely recommend this book due to its beautiful concept of how living in the moment is such an important concept that everyone needs to implement in their own lives. – Sachi B. ’21
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