This is the first installment EVER of “Off the Bookcase”! This book grabbed my heart, and then all of a sudden it ripped it out and tore it to pieces. It was so good I just wanted to run around and tell everyone about it. That book is All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven.
I really am a little bit mad at myself for waiting so long to read this book. I had heard such a big hype about it, and I wanted to wait to read it, to kind of savor not knowing what it was about. The beginning, to me, was a little bit slow and I almost put it down. But, since I made a promise to myself to get through some books on my bookcase, I pushed through- and I’m glad I did.
This book starts out with Theodore Finch, who is 6 stories up in the bell tower on top of his school. He’s thinking about jumping, to end his life, when he sees a girl named Violet- one of the popular girls- climb up to the bell tower next to him. Finch, as everyone calls him, guides Violet down the stairs and out of the way of danger. After that day, a wonderfully interesting and unintentionally wondrous friendship begins.
Finch picks Violet to be his partner for a project that they have to do, where they must go to a few interesting places in Indiana, and document their journey. Violet is scared and doesn’t want to go, because she just lost her sister in a car accident. The events of the accident have stopped her from driving a car, let alone even getting in one.
At first, Violet thinks Finch is cute, but a little out there. The two get closer as they go on their adventure in finding cool places in Indiana. So close that they eventually kiss, and discover each other in even deeper ways.
What Violet doesn’t know, is that Finch has been living with depression for quite some time, and even though he doesn’t want to feel the way he does, it consumes him. He falls in love with Violet, but is it enough to get him out of the darkness?
If you or anyone that you know feels they may have depression, please do not hesitate to get help. BetterHelp is an incredible resource.
This book was a dual narration, and I loved that. You really got to see what each character was thinking. One of the other things I liked about this book was how it explained depression. Depression happens regardless of what’s going on in your life, you could be having the best time with a new girlfriend, and depression doesn’t care. It will consume you even if you are at your happiest. I think that is one thing that people do not understand about the illness. It doesn’t just happen when you are sad, or happen when something bad happens in your life. This is one of the best things about this book, it gives a real look into depression that I haven’t seen in a book before.
To me, this book is a MUST READ. It’s a story of an unlikely friendship, trying to overcome grief, and love that is something I think all wish for. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars, but grab a box of tissues.
I am also very satisfied that I chose this as my first “Off The Bookcase” pick! Next on my agenda for this segment is: