December 5, 2016 by Zoë
Natasha is an undocumented immigrant from Jamaica and she is about to get deported. Daniel is a Korean American who’s supposed to be going to an admissions interview for Yale. In The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon, Daniel and Natasha meet and spend one day together on the streets of New York City. Natasha doesn’t believe in fate, but maybe, just maybe, Daniel can convince her.
Yoon’s writing style is lovely. This story is told in short little bursts from Natasha and Daniel’s view points, but the parts that hooked me were the parts in between. The story is full of little digressions telling the stories of secondary characters, sometimes the story of their whole lives. This little technique really brought the setting to life in a way that wouldn’t have been possible in a story that is so deeply about two characters and two characters alone.
The story also deals with a lot of the issues that are common in immigrant families. While these weren’t the point of the book, they did make up a large portion of it and they were so realistic. And important. Natasha and Daniel aren’t defined by their families’ backgrounds, but their families are nonetheless important.
Obviously this is a story about instalove. They spend one day together and suddenly they’re meant to be together. While that’s hard to swallow no matter who the writer is, Yoon manages to make it feel, if still unrealistic, beautiful and possible. This is a story of coincidences and crossed paths, and while it’s difficult to buy when you take a step back, the whole time I was reading it, I was engrossed.
This book has been getting a lot of praise, and I think it’s warranted, mainly because it was so beautifully written and put together. A cheesy storyline? Maybe. But I still really liked it.
“I answer several variations on the questions of whether I’m a communist, a criminal, or a terrorist and whether I would take up arms to defend the United States. I would not, but still I check the box that says yes.”
I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books for this review.