All The Bright Places by Jennifer NivenAll The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

All The Bright Places

byJennifer Niven

Paperback | September 13, 2016

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The beloved New York Times bestseller that Entertainment Weekly described as “sparkling” and says “get[s] under your skin.” You won’t soon forget this heart-wrenching, unflinching story of love shared, life lived, and two teens who find each other while standing on the edge.
 
 
Theodore Finch is fascinated by death. Every day he thinks of ways he might kill himself, but every day he also searches for—and manages to find—something to keep him here, and alive, and awake.
 
Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her small Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death.
 
When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school—six stories above the ground— it’s unclear who saves whom. Soon it’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink. . . .
 
 
“A do-not-miss for fans of Eleanor & Park and The Fault in Our Stars, and basically anyone who can breathe.” —Justine Magazine
 
“At the heart—a big one—of All the Bright Places lies a charming love story about this unlikely and endearing pair of broken teenagers.” —The New York Times Book Review 
 
“A heart-rending, stylish love story.” —The Wall Street Journal
 
“A complex love story that will bring all the feels.” —Seventeen Magazine
 
Impressively layered, lived-in, and real.” —Buzzfeed.com
Jennifer Niven is the author of the New York Times and international bestseller All the Bright Places, as well as her new YA novel, Holding Up the Universe. She has also written four novels for adults—American Blonde, Becoming Clementine, Velva Jean Learns to Fly, and Velva Jean Learns to Drive—as well as three nonfiction books: The Ic...
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Title:All The Bright PlacesFormat:PaperbackDimensions:416 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.87 inPublished:September 13, 2016Publisher:Random House Children's BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0385755910

ISBN - 13:9780385755917

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Short Yet Powerful Although this book is on the shorter side it definitely doesn't fall short. This book is definitely a slightly more mature but still quirky and upbeat. This book deals with a very present and serious issue our society is dealing with and brings it into light. This book most definitely brought me on an emotional rollercoaster. Absolutely loved this book!
Date published: 2017-10-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I may have thrown my book... I started reading this book after basically being forced to by several of my friends and it was honestly amazing. The characters were so well thought out and the storyline was phenomenal. All The Bright Places discusses mental illness and suicide which was so incredible to read and feel the emotions of Violet and Finch. Definitely would recommend (even though I was very mad at Jennifer Niven lol).
Date published: 2017-10-08
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not The Best This book was alright. It gets hard to read in a few parts but it is an alright read.
Date published: 2017-10-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Beautiful story A mental health story that will capture and bring all your feelings out
Date published: 2017-10-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from really good story idea... i could tell this book had lots of potential. reading through it all, however, proved quite a task. the characters in this book are too stereotypical. it's nothing new, it's nothing walking the barriers of YA novels. if i wanted something with 2 white protagonists i'd look for some veronica roth books. as it is, the plot is pretty good and interesting.
Date published: 2017-09-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A-MAZ-ING I'm not generally a crier when I read, but this book had me bawling so much that I couldn't even see the page. I really connected with this book and I think this is an important story to be told
Date published: 2017-09-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful book This book talks about mental health in teens and is very very important. I got into the story right away and couldn't put the book down until I got to the end. Extremely touching.
Date published: 2017-09-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from READ THIS BOOK PLEASE STOP WAHT YOUR DOING AND READ THIS BOOK. Seriously. You do not know what you are missing. I read this book in a matter of two days and I am so happy I found it. The characters Violet and Finch will become so special to you and you will be left sobbing in your bed for hours after you finish. I do not regret anything. I cannot recommend this book enough please pick it up NOW
Date published: 2017-09-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Meaningful This book broke me! I read it over the course of a weekend and was left sobbing in bed. The characters of Violet and Finch feel so real that their losses become those of the reader.
Date published: 2017-09-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from I loved it, but there was something missing I really liked the story and the characters, but there was something I couldn't quite place that was missing. There wasn't anything bad, just something really amazing was missing from it, it was still very enjoyable.
Date published: 2017-08-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfection I'm a sucker for anything romantic but this book was truly awesome, it broke my heart and put it together again and then broke it again. It was amazing. I found the characters interesting and deep. The ending was brilliant but I still wished for a different one, if only so the book wouldn't end.
Date published: 2017-08-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I abolutely loved this book! I read this book at my highschool and I am so lucky to have done so. I had the time of my life reading it and couldn't part with it easily.
Date published: 2017-08-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book! I don't typically read books with this type of story line so it was a nice change. Very sad.
Date published: 2017-08-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful Truly heartbreaking but uplifts you with witty jokes and funny characters. Beats TFIOS in my opinion
Date published: 2017-08-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Beautiful This book broke my heart into a million pieces. Although I found one of the main characters to be more interesting than the other, and that the beginning of the love story’s realism was questionnable, I found the evolution of the characters (getting better and/or worse) to be well written. Overall a flawed, but very beautiful story.
Date published: 2017-08-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Overrated Heard amazing things about this book but it wasn't that great
Date published: 2017-08-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Eye Opening What a well written and eye opening story
Date published: 2017-08-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My Favourite YA Contemporary Novel I love this book with all my heart. If you haven't read it already, read it!!! I have been going through some pretty tough stuff and this book gave me a different perspective in life. I could relate to both characters Finch and Violet, and the plot was perfect. I would recommend this book to the whole universe if I could, that's how much I loved it! Read it! UltraViolet!
Date published: 2017-08-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from All The Bright Places I would give this novel a 4.5 out of 5 stars. This novel by the end had me crying violently, basically hyperventilating...probably shouldn't read these types of books while being in an emotional state. I really enjoyed this novel.. it hit very close to home for me. My mother passed away very suddenly and unexpectedly ..just like Eleanor did. And like Violet after her passing I had a really hard time readjusting to what my 'new life' was going to be. Any time I smiled, or laughed I felt guilty. I really related to Violet very strongly at the beginning of this tale. I really appreciated the fact that the author was looking into statistics about the different methods of suicide.. it really put the numbers into perspective for me, and the many ways that people take their own lives. It's very heart breaking to know that people can feel this way...and act out of those thoughts. My only main issue with this novel was I wish the author would have gone more into Bipolar Disorder. It felt almost thrown in at the end as a way to basically 'make sense' as to why Finch was having such very depressing feelings. I did like the explanations and descriptions of the darkness Finch was thinking and feeling. I hope that this novel illuminates this for others, to treat people better and that if you need help there should be no shame is asking or seeking help. This novel really got me thinking about how your actions impact everyone in your life. It trickles just like water. This novel utterly broke my heart. But was definitely worth the read.
Date published: 2017-07-29
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Read This book came as a recommendation after 13 Reasons Why. Although it had some similarities, it is a pleasant different read.
Date published: 2017-07-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Emotional but wonderful Started reading this after I finished 13 reasons why and I couldn't put it down. The characters are easy to connect to and the novel uses a simple language that is easy to understand for tweens as well.
Date published: 2017-07-18
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Over hyped I didn't find anything appealing when I read this book. I thought it would be good because of it's reviews but it was severely over hyped and it was actually pretty boring. Not a bad book overall, just not anything special.
Date published: 2017-07-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Emotional Masterpiece This book absolutely captivated me from page one. The story line behind this book is refreshing, and new. It isn't a cheesy romance novel where the girl instantly falls in love with the boy, and they have a relationship. Also the main point of the story isn't solely based on the two main characters relationship, but both the healing of one character, and destruction of another; ultimately leading to very intense moments, and a soul crushing story which left me in tears. Warning: this book isn't of the faint of heart. You will probably cry, and it will leave you wanting more.
Date published: 2017-07-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really sweet but should come with a trigger warning It was a sweet story, kinda cheesy, and ends very sadly. if you thought John Green ripped your heart out this will kill you.
Date published: 2017-07-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love Beautifully written looking forward to the movie
Date published: 2017-07-06
Rated 1 out of 5 by from romanticized and over hyped i am all for including mental illness in YA fiction, and i think it is really important to have PROPER representation for people. this was not good representation. it romanticized mental illness and founded entire character's personalities around their illness, which is not okay. i'm aware that it's being compared to the fault in our stars, but the fault in our stars was honest about illness, and didn't make any of the characters relationships revolves around being sick. if you're looking for a really good book on the topic, i'd suggest it's kind of a funny story, dr. birds advice for sad poets, or more happy than not. finding audrey is also a book YA on mental illness.
Date published: 2017-07-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this book! i am very happy to have bought this book. it deals with mental illness in a very real way. also, the love story was absolutely fantastic!
Date published: 2017-07-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Still sobbing I absolutely loved this book. The story captured me, as did the writing style, and it made me happy and sad all at once. I cried for so long after finishing this. Make sure to bring a box of tissues with you while reading.
Date published: 2017-06-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good strong emotional book Great read, however I could not finish it all at once since it can be emotionally draining.
Date published: 2017-06-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from one of my favorite books! Definitely one of the most heartbreaking, eye-opening, suicide-themed book I have ever read. Besides being able to help me get out of my reading slump (sort of), ATBP was also able to help me think about everything I wasn't able to realize beforehand, and made me realize how powerful our words are and how anything can help a person survive or die. Words aren't enough to describe how lovely this novel is, and how hollow I felt after reading it (that's how powerful Jennifer Niven's words are).
Date published: 2017-06-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Predictable but Good I guessed what was going to happen just not how it was going to happen. Despite the predictability, I like that this book does not romanticize mental illness, which is something that society does a lot. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-06-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my all time favourites! The characters are easy to fall in love with and the storyline is beautiful. Instantly fell in love with this book right from the first page.
Date published: 2017-06-22
Rated 1 out of 5 by from could not get into it not only did it have a really boring start (i read the first one hundred and fifty pages or so... i couldnt finish it. it was SO boring) I also hate the characters. Both of them. there was just something about finch and his smugness that irked me a lot.
Date published: 2017-06-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Inspiring Read Splendid piece of writing.
Date published: 2017-06-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Violet and finch are loveable characters and the storyline is beautiful
Date published: 2017-06-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from thought provoking I bought this book awhile ago and took a long time to read it, but once I started I finished in a day. It's heartbreaking and beautifully done, although I'm always very cautious of YA works that deal with suicidal ideation. I thought Finch and Violet were complex enough characters to not be reduced to a trope. Well written.
Date published: 2017-05-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from YES YES AND YES! Broke my heart, but still totally worth it. I usually prefer happy endings, however I still get a happy ending vibe from it. Hope the movie does it justice. ;)
Date published: 2017-05-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good read #plumrewards. What a gripping drama and romantic tale for the ages
Date published: 2017-05-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Absolutely Incredible Made me laugh, smile and cry, I had to put it down on multiple occasions to avoid freaking out more than I already was. Jennifer Niven sure knows how to evoke emotions in her readers, a little too well if I'm honest. This book was adventurous and sad and romantic and absolutely terrific.
Date published: 2017-05-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing uch a good book of two unlikely pairs that come together and fall in love. the ending totally shocked me, because normally i can figure out what happens half way through a book. such a good read showing that although everything may seem fine, it is causing the most pain of all.
Date published: 2017-05-09
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not Worth The Hype I really like the concept so I picked up this book anticipating a quirky romance where mental illnesses were treated with respect and depth. I felt like this book just romanticized mental illness, using it as a way to unite two-dimensional characters whose entire identities were based on their mental illness. I tried to get into the book, but halfway through i just got too frustrated and bored with the concept and characters - I didn't finish it.
Date published: 2017-05-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Emotional A lovely read that made me tear up. The characters are so well written and the plot is beautiful.
Date published: 2017-05-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good This was a good YA book. I'd also recommend Niven's newest book ... "Holding Up the Universe".
Date published: 2017-05-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from incredible i feel like this is one of those books where you love it or you hate it and thats that. I personally loved this books. it took a couple chapters to really grab me but when it did i couldnt put it down. This book is incredibly written and the story line is amazing. i feel like Jenn Niven really captured what some people go through when dealing with mental illness. yes it is different for everyone in how they handle it so i understand some of the controversy for the story but to me it was done very well. YOU MUST READ YOURSELF TO KNOW
Date published: 2017-05-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely lovely. An instant classic I heard this was being made into a film and so I'm really excited because after reading this and loving each character to death and the unique twist in the plot, I'm really excited how they'll adapt it. Nonetheless, it's a wonderful story with realistic and funny characters, beautiful writing and a heartbreaking plotline. Highly recommend
Date published: 2017-04-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Dark But Real Loved this book. Some of my favourite fictional characters reside in this book. Its definitely a dark emotinal read.
Date published: 2017-04-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from All the colours in one, at full brightness I read this book for the second time and I'm still in love with it. The writing is beautiful and I really connected with the characters. My heart really felt for Violet and Finch and I very much enjoyed their relationship.
Date published: 2017-04-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from What a story! A nice addition to your library.
Date published: 2017-04-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from 3.5 stars i liked this a lot more than i thought I would. The beginning made me mad (the characters felt flat-almost like a mockery personification of mental illnesses just to be "quirky"). This book defines the characters as just by their illness, which isn't right and made me so upset I almost put this book down. However, I continued and thoroughly enjoyed the story and did find it to be very emotional and touching. The writing was also really nice (albeit VERY comparable to the style of The Fault In Our Stars). I was extremely conflicted on what I should rate this book. Some parts are a 1 or 2, some parts are a 4 or 5. so Overall, 3.5
Date published: 2017-04-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from real This book is a beautifully honest depiction of mental illness.
Date published: 2017-04-23
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Decent Loved the book up until Finch disappeared. I found his suicide was poorly handled and was really upset when it happened because I really loved his character. However, his suicide was an important part of the book and the writing is good, which is why this book was given 3 stars.
Date published: 2017-04-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Emotional This story is emotional and heart wrenching but also poignant and beautiful.
Date published: 2017-04-19
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Beautifully Heartbreaking I give this book a 3-star review because I am really hesitant to recommend it to anyone. This book hurt - a lot. So much so, that all the beauty in this book (the writing style, the poetry, the characters, the love) doesn't make up for the bad. It is certainly a book that will stick with you. Have some tissues ready!
Date published: 2017-04-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved this book This book was great and kept me interested all the way through. Loved the characters and how they developed through the story. I would definitely recommend reading this book.
Date published: 2017-04-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from OMG BEST BOOK EVER!!! This book is amazing!!! Its perfect. I bought this book for my bestfriend as her birthday gift and after reading the few pages I went back to the store and bought myself a copy. The characters are amazing and you would get soo hooked that you would become to feel like the characters. Definitely, 10/10.
Date published: 2017-04-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! This book is amazingly written, in a way that's not too hard to understand. The characters have a way of grabbing you and they won't let you go. I feel like it was written a little more for teenagers, as it sums up our teenage life. Amazing book, a must read!
Date published: 2017-04-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from loved it! I bought this a couple months ago and never wanted to finish it. I thought it had a similar story line to couple other stories; two teens with their own problems but fall in love, i personally like these kinds of books.But then again it was different, but if i talk about all that i would spoil it. I would recommend reading this book, so glad i bought it
Date published: 2017-04-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I really enjoyed this! When I read this i couldn't put it down. I just wanted to see what would happen and I'm kind of glad that it ended the way it did. I know there are some faults in this book surrounding the mental illness aspect but I still found it enjoyable. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-04-01
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Heartbreakingly beautiful! This novel is sweet and will most definitely bring tear to your eyes. For fans of the Fault in our Stars.
Date published: 2017-03-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it It was such a beautiful story that had me smiling, mad, sad, and forgiving all in one chapter.
Date published: 2017-03-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful. I have never had a book take hold of me, make me fall head over heels for the characters, and then turn around and completely destroy me emotionally as much as this one did.. And even though I was hiccup crying by the end, I still stand by and say an incredible read!!
Date published: 2017-03-24
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Over hyped This one didn't live up the my expectations and I didn't like the portrayal of mental illness.
Date published: 2017-03-21
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Different... I was told to read this by a friend, and while I didn't hate it, it wasn't quite what I was expecting. I skimmed certain parts, but I really found myself moved by the ending. So it's a quick read that kind of makes you think, but I wouldn't necessarily place it at the top of my list.
Date published: 2017-03-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreakingly Beautiful All the Bright Places at first seemed to be your typical YA love story: popular teenage girl falls in love with troubled teenage boy and they live happily ever after. The end. I'm happy to say that this book was so much more than that. It was a heartbreakingly beautiful commentary on the reality of love, loss, and mental illness. Jennifer Niven does an excellent job exploring these themes through the eyes of two complex characters, each fighting their own battle. This is definitely a book that I would recommend to friends and I will certainly read it again and again. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-03-16
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Didn't Even Finish It I didn't like this book - another YA novel that was overhyped that I didn't enjoy. I gave it away at Christmas, so hopefully a teen in need finds it and enjoys it as much as everyone else has!
Date published: 2017-03-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from this too i also would love to read this
Date published: 2017-03-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved this! This was a great book and so incredibly heartbreaking!
Date published: 2017-03-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it. Insightful. Puts words to feelings you never knew you had. Also absolutely heartbreaking in the best and worst ways.
Date published: 2017-03-04
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Didn't Enjoy It I didn't like this book at all.
Date published: 2017-03-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutly Beautiful I loved this book. It's beautifully written story. I feel in love with the characters instantly! I don't think I'll soon forget Finch and Violet.
Date published: 2017-03-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Incredibly Beautiful and Sad Even though I am an emotional person not many books can make me cry. I can count them on one hand and now I'm one more finger down. All the Bright Places is not an easy book to read but it makes you feel everything. Because this was a highly talked about book when it was first published I had a faint idea of how the story plays out. No matter how prepared I told myself I was All the Bright Places was still a tough read. The closer I got to the ending the harder it became to bring myself to keep reading. That inevitable end. It hurts. A lot. I can't comment too much on the mental illness aspect of the book but from a reader's perspective I do feel like it's realistic. Finch struggled within himself while Violet outwardly dealt with grief. The two couldn't have been more different (in every way) but that didn't stop them from finding solace in each other. Even with troubled minds Finch and Violet were sweet together. I love how hard Finch tried to fight (himself) for Violet and how she sought out help for him when alarm bells went off in her head. It was difficult but Violet did the right thing. Regardless of the end result she fought for him. I was literally a sobbing mess following Violet on the last few wanderings she had. Finch was a boy with such random but complex thoughts. At first I didn't like his POV but he grew on me. His voice was raw and realistic. There was an immense amount of pain hidden behind his different façades. Eccentric, depressing yet hopeful at times. "And sorry wastes time. You have to live your life like you'll never be sorry." (p. 129). And that's exactly how Finch lived. He struggled big time but he also lived the way he wanted to and that's really the best anyone could have hoped for for him. The parental figures in this book were either absent, too understanding, controlling or didn't care enough and I disliked them all. That's all I want to say about them. All the Bright Places is a forever kind of book- one that shoots straight into your heart. It's packed with so much emotions, with tough but important realities. It's a story that I will never forget.
Date published: 2017-03-01
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Didn't Enjoy It For a book that was so hyped up, I didn't enjoy it at all.
Date published: 2017-02-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I cried I absolutely love this book so much! I relate so much
Date published: 2017-02-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Mental Health Representation Despite the fact that this book is about mental illness, the representation isn't the best. At times, it can be realistic but during others, simply stereotypical. That said, sometimes stereotypes are accurate. I enjoyed the plot of the book and the majority of it wasn't too predictabel to me, which was a plus.
Date published: 2017-02-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing amazing amazing!!! this book was too much for my poor heart. Loved evry second of it totally recommends.
Date published: 2017-02-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Overrated Don't get me wrong, I loved this book, I just don't think it lived up to all the hype it received. The relationship between Jack and Violet is confusing at times, but the things Jack does for Violet are beyond sweet. I think the best part of the book was the ending, although it was quite sad. I found the beginning to be a little slow. Overall, it is a good book if you like books that deal with the struggle of mental illness. Other than that though, I personally don't think it lives up to all the hype it has received.
Date published: 2017-02-21
Rated 3 out of 5 by from 3.5 stars for some of the nice quotes and the wanderings. Despite putting this book on hold numerous times and never getting a chance to finish it, I'm kind of disappointed that I didn't enjoy this book as much as I would have liked. The protagonists were flawed which were great but I found the secondary characters to be flat and stereotypical. But mostly I think the main issue was that I didn't get attached to the characters. So when Finch and Violet got together and became a couple, I wasn't cheering or anything for them. >_< Despite not feeling attachment toward the characters, the last quarter of the book was sad.
Date published: 2017-02-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow Sad yet genuine take on mental illness
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Changed me lol It left me shook for literally months. If you cant handle hard subjects probably dont read it but if you can you'd probably like it
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Don't pick this up unless you can read it all at once! I'm serious. I bought this book on a whim at an airport, and that was the best decision I could've made that day! Make no mistake, Violet and Finch AREN'T another Hazel and Augustus regardless of how the marketing portrays it. Not only were these characters so much their own, they were also spreading awareness and advocating for mental illness which is an amazing on its own BUT mixed with the fact that the story was exploration and romantic in ways TFIOS wasn't. Loved this book, regardless of the fact it made me a blubbering mess at 40,000 feet.
Date published: 2017-02-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A raw, genuine take on mental illness I tentatively put this on my To Be Read list around the time it first came out and went back and forth about reading it for a while. It looked like another Fault in Our Stars, (in fact, it’s market as such), which had me worried. But while I was doing my dissertation on YA marketing, I was attending a whole slew of literary conferences on the topic and Jennifer Niven spoke about All the Bright Places on a mental illness panel. And I will say this: she seems like an extremely lovely lady. Someone well-intentioned and a person who would be a really supportive, patient, understanding teen or mentor to teens. Everything she said about her reasoning for writing the novel boiled down to “you are loved, you are not alone,” which is why her portrayal of protagonists Violet and Finch felt so genuine to me. Her tackling the subject felt incredibly sincere, like someone who’s been through the motions one too many times herself and she just wanted to share her experience with an audience who needed to hear it. And she does, in fact, say in her author’s note that she lost loved ones to suicide and she struggled to understand why they would do it and how something like that could happen. She also includes a comprehensive international suicide hotline listing, which I think speaks a lot to just how sincere she is in her intentions in writing this book. Around the time this novel was published, a close childhood friend of my family’s was lost to suicide and the emotional turmoil and shock of it took me completely by surprise. And Niven articulately addresses just what that experience is like, not only from the point of view of the loved ones and bystanders, but of the victim themselves. There’s a certain amount of Finch’s character development that feels very needlessly eccentric. At times, he just reads like a quirky YA male love interest, when in fact, he’s this very broken teen who doesn’t know who he is, who he’s supposed to be, and who he wants to be. And all the other noise surrounding his character is his way of blocking out that pain of existential crisis that eats away at him. His fixations on death were played out similar to Harold and Maude, like oh, this is kind of a cute game, and yeah, that’s just what he does, but it escalates in a very subtle way that doesn’t make you think where his mental state is, but at the same time, doesn’t romanticise it. I found this particular nuance of his character incredibly true to form because yeah, people with suicidal tendencies do fixate on drowning or stepping off a ledge. And I’m probably going to be forever haunted, knowing that someone I once knew contemplated painstakingly detailed ways to drown themselves before their eventual death. That wasn’t ultimately how they died, but the fact that Niven’s protagonist does in that way still resonates with me all the same. On the surface though, this story isn’t just about suicide. On a broader scale, it’s about mental illness in general. And I like that Niven isn’t afraid to take on the glib way people treat mental illness. For so many people in Finch’s life to know full well that he’s threatened or attempted to kill himself and simply brush it off as a joke, or not their problem really elevates just how horrific this issue is. His own therapist tells him not to jump off the roof on school property not out of concern for his wellbeing, but to prevent a lawsuit against the school. His divorced parents on the one hand abuse him, and on the other, neglect him, further aggravating the situation. He clearly does not have a support system in place, and when Violet shows up in his life, it’s clear he doesn’t know what to do with one when it’s handed to him. Ironically enough, he makes it his mission to become her support system when she’s grieving the loss of her sister. Yet he doesn’t realise that he deserves the same care from her. In a nice juxtaposition and foil for Finch and his toxic family life, we find out that Violet actually does have a solid support system already in place for herself. Her parents are loving and attentive and when she’s going through her grief, her mother is there to actively encourage her to get back into writing again in a new way that reflects this new stage in her life without her sister. The most telling is just how angry her parents are when they find out Finch’s own parents refuse to completely acknowledge and accept the possibility of their son’s death when faced with the opportunity to find him. This prominent feature of healthy parent-teenager relationships is something very rarely found in YA and I’m so relieved to see it in action here. Another thing I loved about this story was Violet’s character development. She’s a smart, ambitious writer, and of course, I get her. Because she’s me. After her sister’s death, she goes through a very long dry spell where she can’t bring herself to write anymore. But as the plot goes on, she finds a new way to approach writing in an even more meaningful way. And that’s really representative of many healthy ways she copes with her depression. She starts brainstorming topics of interest, and how she wants to make her mark on the world in a way that matters to other people. She drops all her vapid mean girl friends and starts hanging out with a really cool new friend group that actually gets her. She comes to her parents and opens up about her feelings. She moves forward with her life. And that’s as real a portrayal of how to cope with mental illness as Finch’s maladaptations are. Getting both sides of the coin like that was really refreshing. And the fact that Violet and Finch were romantically involved didn’t make either of their mental issues magically go away. Just because Finch was happy didn’t make him any less unstable. Because things like that don’t just go away when you’re loved. It’s about accepting that you have someone there to help you live with it that matters most. And some people can’t accept themselves and can’t accept help when it’s handed to them. And it’s sad, but that’s how it goes sometimes. So for all of this complex, raw exploration of mental illness, I loved this novel. It’s honest and unafraid to approach topics that are otherwise neglected as a taboo in public institutions. This novel is exactly what I wanted Perks of Being a Wallflower to be. It was eloquently written with real teens doing real teen things. Their adventures were realistic and plausible. It wasn’t Violet and Finch making out in the middle of the Anne Frank museum to a round of applause a la Faults in Our Stars. It wasn’t that. These kids did real, obtainable, possible things. It felt very real to me and I related. And I think a lot of actual teens with and do too. It’s books like these that remind me just how on the ball YA has become (and is still in the process of becoming) in terms of addressing real, relatable teen issues. And I think we need much more of this.
Date published: 2017-02-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A favourite First love...mental illness...tragedy. A moving story that will capture the hearts of readers and hopefully bring how we deal with mental illness in our country to the front of minds.
Date published: 2017-02-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A genuine take on mental illness A genuine, raw exploration of the reality of living with mental illness. A really solid juxtaposition between main characters, one who has a support system in place and one who doesn't. Honest and carefully expressed.
Date published: 2017-02-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect. Ever since I have read this book, I always compare all the other romance novels from this one. I could never forget about this novel, thank you Jennifer Niven for writing such an amazing novel. This makes you realize what happiness and sadness truly is.
Date published: 2017-02-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Worth the hype I read this book following the hype, which usually I've built up such expectations that Im always left wondering "what the heck is everyone talking about", but this one makes you feel every emotion. You really want the characters to find their happy ending. Every page it gets better and better.
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from So good! Actually rated 4.5/5 stars My first thought after finishing this book went something like this: "SO! MANY! FEELS!" while I was curled into a ball on my couch. The overall plot is so good, the characters are wonderful, although all of my issues with it do stem from the characters. I found the story flowed incredibly smoothly and the pacing makes it such a quick read. The book does cover some heavy subject matter such as, depression, death and suicide, but I feel it was handled quite well for the most part. I enjoyed seeing the relationship between Violet and Finch develop, I thought it was pretty realistic. Oh and the ending literally tore me in two, even though I did see it coming, it didn't make it any easier. Violet is the popular girl with the anxiety and struggles of someone who feels forced to hide how she's feeling after suffering a tragic loss. Finch is the depressed, misunderstood musician who everyone thinks is weird. I found them so easy to connect to, I almost instantly fell in love with both of them. I found myself sad when they were and rooting for them in their times of happiness. Overall, I think the cast were good characters that a lot of people can relate to, however, I did have some issues. At times I felt that the characters seemed like they were only their mental illness. I understand that mental illness can take over your life completely, I just thought that sometimes it seemed like the only real thing giving them personality was their mental illness. I found this with Finch specifically, I found often times he seemed like a cliche. The thing that bothered me most was that none of the other characters treated either of their problems as if they were real. Parents, siblings and even friends ignored it, even though there was clearly something wrong. Now at the same time, I know that there are a lot of people in the world that ignore mental illness, or essentially refuse to accept or see it as something that people suffer from. I'm not sure if that was what the author was trying to point out in the book or not, so I guess this is more of a personal frustration for me then a con for the book. I really enjoyed this book, although I'm not sure "enjoyed" is the proper word. More like it caused me extreme happiness and then ripped me apart in the best possible way. I actually had to take a night off from reading a different book after finishing this because I couldn't stop thinking about it. I would recommend this to anyone who thinks that they would like to torture their feelings and emotions. It was a great contemporary read that is very quick to get through
Date published: 2017-01-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Awareness for Mental Illness This book got me thinking. Throughout the book I couldn't help but think: How many Theodore Finches do you know? All the signs you're missing? This book was an eye opener. I was able to relate with the characters, and I cried when reading this. I really recommend this to people because it is really good.
Date published: 2017-01-27
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Over hyped? Maybe. But still good. I'm glad i read this book. It wasn't the magical experience promised but it was still a solid read.
Date published: 2017-01-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Simply Brilliant Absolutely amazing. I bought this book on a whim because it dealt with mental illness. Seriously could not have loved it more. This captures the realities that mental illness can embody - the good, the bad, and the ugly - it's never just sunshine and roses, but shows the dark, horrific side to mental illnesses in such a real, personable way. I felt like I knew these people and felt everything they did as the story progressed - love, heartbreak, hope, inspiration. 10/10. I can't wait to read more by Niven, simply brilliant.
Date published: 2017-01-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really great I found this book incredibly inspirational. A must read.
Date published: 2017-01-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven All the Bright Places is the story of how Theodore Finch and Ultraviolet are brought together by death--which would be gloomy, except the two personalities bloom, becoming something beautiful, as their wondrous adventures bring them closer together. Jennifer Niven takes a girl meets boy story, sets it in the dull landscape of Indiana, and turns it into a Seussical wonderworld with these extraordinarily conflicted characters. Saying their journey is a rollercoaster would be a understatement. It's an amusement park. Every scene is a different thrill ride. With a character as explosive as Finch and one with a troubled background like Ultraviolet, falling in love and knockout fights go hand and hand. All the Bright Places takes you to All the Good Places and All the Bad Places and everywhere in between, and the words that take you there are spellbinding.
Date published: 2017-01-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it. I fell in love with the characters. The story is heart filling and beautiful. The ending made me so sad.
Date published: 2017-01-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautifully Tragic I've never cried reading a book. I had to put the book down so I can stop myself from crying because I couldn't see through my tears. It is eye opening, brings out a good laugh, and a complete tear jerker. Usually, when reading books, it's very hard for me to get through the first few pages but with this book, I read the first sentence and was hooked. It was something I have never experienced before. Couldn't recommend a better book to read!
Date published: 2017-01-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautifully tragic I loved how this book nicely wrapped up the effects of mental illness and how it is a serious and real thing. This book was really beautiful and the characters were great! I felt so many emotions while reading, I laughed, cried and got frustrated more than a handful of times. I think the author did a great job to make her point while keeping the book somehwhat light hearted.
Date published: 2017-01-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An Authentic Look at Mental Illness It's hopeful, heartbreaking, and filled with unforgettable characters.
Date published: 2017-01-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heart-breaking yet beautiful. I could not put this book down from the moment I started it. It's shows that just one person can change your life without them even realizing it. Reminds me of Fault in our Stars and also, P.s. i love you. Worth the buy, It's one I could read a million times and still love.
Date published: 2017-01-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from MUST READ! Beautiful story! I wish I knew where to start with how much I loved this book. I bought it by mistake, but it quickly became one of my favourite books. I absolutely loved the story. It made me laugh and it made me cry ( a lot). I heard it is going to become a movie and I really hope it does. It is a story that deserves to be told time and time again. Heartfelt and beautiful. A must-must-MUST read!!
Date published: 2017-01-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this so much Such a heart wrenching story. I loved it
Date published: 2017-01-16
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Similar to The Faults in Our Stars Before I read this book, I heard great reviews from people. But once I had actually read it myself, I just felt it was all so cliche. It reminded me of the Faults in Our Stars and Looking for Alaska quite a bit by the fact that the main character, known as Finch, wanted to find the "Great Manifesto" and from what happens in the end. I would have enjoyed reading the book at a younger age than reading it at 17 years old, but then again everyone is different. Personally though, I wouldn't recommend this to anyone older than around 14 or 15. It was very cute, but just not my taste at this age.
Date published: 2017-01-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Left an everlasting impact A heart-wrenching story about a girl named Violet and a boy named Finch, who meet on the top of their school clock tower. This is one of my favourite books of all time. It’s a very important read that focuses on mental health. I’ll let this one speak for itself.
Date published: 2017-01-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved this! This book captured my mind and broke my heart, all the while, teaching me that anything is possible.
Date published: 2017-01-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from All the feels... Not all YA books are created equal. When I was a teen in the 70s YA was barely a thing. Basically I went from reading The Bobbsey Twins and Trixie Beldon to reading Jane Eyre and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. The Scholastic flyer at school offered some options and I can specifically remember reading and falling in love with S.E. Hinton’s That Was Then, This is Now (a book I loved way more than I loved The Outsiders), and Judy Blume’s Forever, but the reading choices certainly weren’t as varied as they are for teens today. I read a lot of YA now because I teach teens. Lots of it is mediocre. Lots of it is good. Then, every so often, you read a book you just want to tell all your students about. You want every single teen you know on the planet to read it. Jennifer Niven’s All the Bright Places is one of those books. Theodore Finch is seventeen. He begins his story by asking “Is today a good day to die?” He’s considering this question from “a narrow ledge six floors above the ground.” That’s when he sees the girl, Violet Markey. “She stands a few feet away on the other side of the tower, also out on the ledge…” This is how Niven begins to tell the story of Finch and Violet. Finch ‘rescues’ Violet, but because he has a reputation as being a freak, a loser, and unstable, the rumour around school is that Violet saved him. From this unlikely scenario, a beautiful friendship springs. After Finch talks Violet off the ledge he asks her: “Do you think there’s such a thing as a perfect day?…A perfect day. Start to finish. Where nothing terrible or sad or ordinary happens. Do you think it’s possible?” Just typing that now makes me feel as though I want to cry. Violet doesn’t seem like a likely match for Finch. She’s “cheerleader popular” and dates Ryan Cross, a movie star-handsome baseball star. Still, when the two are paired to participate in a “Wander Indiana” project (part of a course in U.S. Geography), they discover a kinship neither expected. As they travel to various points of interest, they start to trust each other. Violet begins the painful process of shedding the grief of a tragic accident and Finch finds more and more reason to stay “awake.” One of the things that makes a YA novel great for me is characterization. I want the teens to feel authentic, not like stereotypes. Finch and Violet are beautifully crafted creations, and the people who circle their lives (parents and siblings and friends) are also well-drawn and nuanced. Finch’s mom is broken from her failed marriage; Violet’s parents are over-protective. As a mom of teens myself, I like to see parents in YA portrayed as real people – flawed and messy and trying to do the best they can even when can’t fix anything at all. The other element of the novel that Niven handles so well is the issue of mental illness. All the Bright Places is not a “sick lit” book. Finch’s struggles are authentic and nuanced and painfully rendered in prose that is a joy to read. I can’t remember the last time a character has broken my heart, but Finch most certainly did. I can’t recommend All the Bright Places highly enough. Buy it for every teen you know. Buy it for yourself.
Date published: 2017-01-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Almost a Favourite This book is beautiful in many ways and I definitely appreciate the message it portrays. However, as much as I want to love it, I feel it just falls short. Somewhere along the story, the details get less and less as the author packs more story lines and adventures in. The writing is still amazing, and this book tugged at my heart; I laughed and cried which I appreciate in a book.
Date published: 2017-01-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A boy named Finch Kind of along the same vein as The Fault In Our Stars. Was one of my favourite books until the end. You kind of know whats coming, but I thought that it would for sure end differently, and then it didn’t, and that felt like a bit of a cop-out.
Date published: 2017-01-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved it This book, in my opinion, is wonderful! I loved the characters, the story was great, and was, I felt, a good representation of living with a mental illness
Date published: 2017-01-02
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Alright Didn't quite live up to the hype, it was a familiar concept and addressed mental health which is super important though.
Date published: 2016-12-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from All the Bright Places If you like John Green novels, particularly Looking for Alaska, you will love All the Bright Places! One of the best books I've read all year.
Date published: 2016-12-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a great story I found this book to be cmparable to a John Green book. I liked how the story ended, even if it was unexpected. I like how it was also based somewhat on a true story. One of my favorite books. Violet + Finch forever!
Date published: 2016-12-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Changed my life... I just bought this book and I read it in one day. It was so interesting. I wanted to cry, scream, do a happy dance, and at the same time close the book. The ending was so heartbreaking that I just wanted to close the book so I couldn't feel Violet's pain. The book was just amazing; for me, I could almost feel the pain, happiness, and their feelings. There was also quite a bit of humour mixed in. What my favourite part about this book in particular, the quotes. What each character says; about death, losing someone. The quotes were so deep. It changed my perspective on life. All in all, one of the best books I've ever read!
Date published: 2016-12-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An emotional rollercoaster! This book was recommended to me by a friend, and I'm so glad that I read this. It was beautiful written told from two different perspectives. Watching the two characters grow together was amazing and so emotional! It's one of those books that's hard to put down. If you like romantic novels like "The Fault In Our Stars" or "Everything, Everything" you'll love this book.
Date published: 2016-12-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing! Great read, a realistic depiction of people suffering from depression that everyone should read.
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING! It was honestly so good. It was so beautiful and well written. It's one of those books that you think about weeks after reading it...
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved It I really enjoyed reading All the Bright Places. It's an easy read with an amazing story line. The ending isn't your usual YA but that's what makes this book different. Definitely a book to read for a night in.
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Couldn't finish I was 20 pages into this book and could not bring myself to continue. The characters are over the top cheesy and the writing was much too cliche.
Date published: 2016-12-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Read! This is a good book that has a powerful message about mental illness and coping with death of a loved one. Violet has lost her sister and has trouble with the aftermath where Finch helps her over come this. Both the main characters are very lovable and the story is a wonderful tale about learning to love life again along with finding yourself after feeling like you have lost who you are. Finch is a young man battling a mental illness, who the author makes easy to love and want to help. This is a wonderful book that I definitely would recommend.
Date published: 2016-12-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking I wish the ending could have gone another way. You will likely cry while reading this :'(
Date published: 2016-12-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking Emotional and impactful. The plot was predictable but that just lent to the story due to the fact you're in love with the characters and you don't want what is obviously going to happen to come into their reality. I couldn't put it down.
Date published: 2016-12-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! Jennifer Niven has written a poignant and powerful story that will leave you haunted long after you finish it! She perfectly portrayed the negative side effects of mental illness not being handled properly, and this is definitely a book that I think anyone could benefit from reading.
Date published: 2016-12-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing ! I loved this book. It felt very real to me. This story line does happen in real life unfortunately. When I finished the book I actually shed a couple of tears and felt broken after. It's a tragic but very good book.
Date published: 2016-12-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Emotional Reading this book was hard simply because of how emotionally draining it was (in a good way). I really got into the characters and was overwhelmed by how sad i was at the end of the novel. All around good read and very gripping!
Date published: 2016-12-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from All the Bright Places A difficult and sorrowful read. I enjoyed it, but there were parts that weren't as well developed as others. The characters were bordering on cliche, the plot was sloppy at points and the finale was predictable.
Date published: 2016-12-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not perfect, but definitely worth it This book "gets it" a lot about grief, mental illness, and in terms of creating compelling characters with unique voices. (Especially Finch, I think.) Definitely worth the time. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-12-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from THIS BOOK TORE MY HEART APART IN THE BEST POSSIBLE WAY First of all, this book is lovely. I finished reading this at school and it was a big mistake. Normal day in science and all you see is me crying uncontrollably. I literally can't stop crying. I loved this better than the fault in our stars honestly. Their impromptu rendezvous sparked that spontaneous wanderer side of myself and let me tell you, I'm more of the inside home all day chilling in my pajamas type. But their story was amazing and it kind of gave me the will to give up social media, at least instagram, for a while and live life without looking at it through lenses. I cannot wait for the movie! OMG
Date published: 2016-12-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! This book is so amazing. The adventures that Theodore and VIolet have are so fun to read about, and the ending tore me apart. So good!
Date published: 2016-12-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great YA YA authors sure know how to tug at your heartstrings. Violet and Finch were believable characters and I bought their story. Another great love story/tragedy that will undoubtedly make a subpar movie.
Date published: 2016-12-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This Book Gives Me Life!!! I bought this book a while ago and read it back in grade 9. i fell in love in this book the way it was written and the plot and everything.
Date published: 2016-12-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from loved i read this book around the time it first came out, and i still think of it pretty often. it is such a good book, i got so into that i couldn't put it down. this book will take you on an emotional roller-coaster, but it will all be worth it
Date published: 2016-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from All the Feels This book will make you cry and laugh in a span of like 2 pages
Date published: 2016-11-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So Emotional. This is one of the best romantic books I have ever read. I cried through it all. The characters are funny and loveable, perfection in one book.
Date published: 2016-11-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! This is one of the most emotionally gripping books that I've ever read, and over a year after finishing it, this book has continued to stay with me. Jennifer Niven writes about mental illness in a way that doesn't sugarcoat anything, and shows the devastating results it can have when it's not given the proper attention it should be. I highly recommend this one, but remember to have kleenex handy for reading it, as it's definitely a tear jerker.
Date published: 2016-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a good book I loved this book, The characters were very well written. It was a sad/happy story.
Date published: 2016-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beyond Words I have read this at least 12 times. I cry every time. Niven does a great job at throwing in curve balls and keeps you on your toes
Date published: 2016-11-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from YES!! This book tore me apart. I loved every second of it. Definitely a must read!!
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from You NEED to feel everything this book has to offer There is not enough that I can say about All The Bright Places. Jennifer Niven takes you through real emotions, real relationships, real hardships and makes you feel everything from two different perspectives. It is beautiful and charming and full of challenge and heartache and redemption and love. You'll laugh and you'll cry and it'll be one of your favourite books this year. It broke me and put me back together again in the most beautiful way.
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I loved this ! It is really good !!! You will enjoy it !
Date published: 2016-11-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautifully Tragic I received this book and a gift, and it was one of the best books I have read this year. It is written in such a clever way, and each chapter leaves a lasting impact. However, it is a very sad and tragic book. Beautiful, but tragic.
Date published: 2016-11-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really Good! Couldn't put it down once I started reading. It was very powerful and even managed to make me cry!
Date published: 2016-11-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Alex This style of writing is very specific and some make find it hard to follow or enjoy. If you enjoyed books with two plus very different views of people in the books, this is the book for you. I couldn't but it down and it is very realistic. The ending broke me and I'm happy it did. Plot twists are the best. Highly recommended.
Date published: 2016-11-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great! I really enjoyed this book, although I think it is a book that only certain type of readers will enjoy. Even if you like the description, I'd try picking a copy up and reading a couple pages first to see if it will suit you. I find a lot of the negative reviews from this book are just from those who are not used to this style of book and topics.
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So good I cried I received this as a gift from my sister and put off reading it for some reason, but I finally read it and I couldn't put it down. There is such great characterization, and the plot is so unique and wonderful. It's definitely a must-read
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Touching and Heartfelt This book takes you on an emotional ride like never before. The natural and fluid chemistry between the two characters is very cute and their dynamic is not some "lovey dovey" romance. When reading this book you never really know what's going to happen next and that is quite interesting for a contemporary. The ending will surprise you and pull on all your heart strings.
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 2 out of 5 by from I was dissappointed This book really let me down. I feel like there was a lot of hype surrounding this book and I personally found it through the youtuber Zoella. This just wasn't for me unfortunately. I couldn't finish it.
Date published: 2016-11-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful I read this book during the summer, and all I can say was the whole story was beautiful; the characters, the events, the idea. I don't think any book has ever made me cry this much, I loved it and I think anyone who reads it will too.
Date published: 2016-11-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from beautiful This is going to be a long one, just a disclaimer. *minor spoilers* "Finch was trying to fix himself for you, Violet" IM BAWLING. I'm actually crying my eyes out at the ending of this book. NIVEN! Why did you do this to me?!? I'm torn, I'm horribly and beautifully torn about this book. I started off reading it thinking it was 3 stars, I really didn't get all the hype, but as I got towards the end I knew it was at least 4.5 stars. I'm not going to lie, at the beginning I liked the book enough to finish it, but I was heavily annoyed with the unrealistic elements of Bartlett High, then I realized that while my high school is fortunate enough to be a tad more tolerant and educated about issues around mental health, a lot of schools, especially in more rural towns, are not as fortunate. Nonetheless, in the grand scheme of things that really isn't THAT big of a deal. This really is a novel that gets better and better as you continue into it, I laughed out loud, I thought, I quoted (a lot) and I smiled at Jennifer Nivens tragic tale of teenage love, bi-polar disorder (although I'm not sure the label matters), mental illness, suicide, stigma, depression. For one thing, this book is NOT Eleanor & Park and it's not TFIOS. Stop saying that. The comparison is so so unfair. Eleanor & Park is my all time favourite book, TFIOS is up there too, but never have I ever read a book with characters like Finch. No offence, but Niven's characters are so so dynamic and unpredictable. Everyone in this story, from Brenda to Charlie to Decca to Amanda to Mr. Black has their own personality that's so so different and unique and they really represent all the multidimensional people in life, no one is really the same. Even Violet's Ex has something that makes him...human, his "flaw" (the stealing). I love love love the fact that Finch and Violet come from completely different lifestyles, no, not in a Romeo and Juliet way, more like their privileges are completely different. Finch: Although it goes unspoken, it's pretty clear that Mr. Finch has bi-polar disorder that he "passed on" to Finch, his family is so disturbed and his mother is so broken that she can barley take care of herself. Violet: other than her sisters death, Violets life was (is) virtually perfect, mother and father, well-liked with good friends et centra. Lastly, I'd like to talk about the ending of All The Bright Places. I bawled. No I actually BAWLED my eyes out, I've NEVER cried this much reading anything. I'm talking tears streaming down my face. I didn't know I could be so emotionally attached to a book. I'm almost terrified for this book to become a movie because I don't want it to loose it's beauty. Lastly, I'd like to say that if you haven't read it yet - read it. Please, now, I actually can't believe I procrastinated this book for almost two years. Stunning, just stunning. Side note: Niven's authors note was so beautiful and well written and it made me love this book even more. You are not your mental illness, you are not your label. As a society we need to rid ourselves of this stigma. Suicide is not something to be taken lightly or ignored. Mental illness is not to be joked about. The author did a wonderful job at making that statement. 5 Stars For -content -character development
Date published: 2016-11-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing book to be read by all! Over a year after having read this book, I still think about it regularly! Beautiful story, beautifully written. I cannot recommend this book enough to anyone and everyone who loves to read!
Date published: 2016-11-07
Rated 2 out of 5 by from I enjoyed it, but the story felt a little thin and I would have loved some more depth and backstory. I enjoyed it, but the story felt a little thin and I would have loved some more depth and backstory.
Date published: 2016-11-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking but amazing I loved, loved, loved this book. It's based around two teenagers, so if YA fiction isn't your thing, then it might not suit your fancy, but I read it when I was 24 and still adored it. It took a deep look into the mind of a mentally ill teenage boy and girl, struggling not only with their illness, but the many aspects of teenage life that can be very difficult at the time. Very easy read to get through, mainly because I couldn't put it down. It was one of the best books I had read in a while, but it truly broke my heart.
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a great book No other book has made me cry harder than this has. Truly an amazing read.
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I literally wanted to cry! I love Finch! I was so sad at the end of the novel but was truly amazed by the story and how it covered mental illness.
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I had been wanting to read All the Bright Places for a while so I finally picked it up. This book is incredible I loved it. I couldn't put it down. I loved Theodore and Violet so much and their relationship was adorable. I would definitely recommend this! :)
Date published: 2016-10-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved I had found All The Bright Places in my local library and it has been recommended to me by many people. Jennifer Niven did such a good job with this book. I loved the way she made Theo and Violet meet, it was a way that they were both being heroes and saving each other from something that they may regret later. I really enjoyed this book and i'm hoping to get my very own copy soon
Date published: 2016-10-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A BOOK YOU WONT EVER FORGET!!! This book was gold, flowing and just lovely. It started really emotional that got me really hooked. Then came love that made me smile stupidly. Then comes the denial and heartbreak then closure. God it was a roller coaster of emotions and I love it so much, pure perfection... Totally recommend guys, you wont regret it .
Date published: 2016-09-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautifully sad. This book hit's so close to home from the side of someone with depression. OR someone that has a loved one that is battling depression. It is such a hard thing to comprehend on either side. This book sheds a little light into the feelings that occur.
Date published: 2016-07-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing! I gotta say, I'm really not that much of a big reader. I used to hate reading as a kid, especially because I'm not a fast reader either. But last summer I decided to buy a book, and ended up picking up All The Bright Places. I read the entire book within a week (which is really fast for me considering I was occupied and I suck at reading) and I loved it. It's a distrubing book, but in a fascinating way. I was really captivated by it, and actually I'm gonna start reading it again really soon! I really loved it!
Date published: 2016-07-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pretty Good I really enjoyed this book. The characters were fascinating, the plot was great, and the ending was bittersweet. But, I didn't enjoy the relationship between Violet and Finch. It felt so... forced. Unnecessary. They really didn't need to date. They didn't have any romantic chemistry. But it was still pretty good.
Date published: 2016-07-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Seriously messed me up THIS WAS SO GOOD!! I literally read it in like 5 hours, I just couldn't put it down. I was so immersed in it from beginning to end that when I finished it I didn't even know what to do with myself. It was beautifully heartbreaking.
Date published: 2016-06-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Broke my Heart in a Good Way! I'm literally depressed after reading this book but it was amazing! Definitely one of those books that touches your heart and leaves you emotional. I finished it in 2 days and I'm already starting over because it was that good.
Date published: 2016-04-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from THE PERFECT MIX OF THE FAULT IN OURS STARS AND THIRTEEN REASONS WHY So different yet very relatables
Date published: 2016-04-11

Read from the Book

FinchI am awake again. Day 6.Is today a good day to die?This is something I ask myself in the morning when I wake up. In third period when I'm trying to keep my eyes open while Mr. Schroeder drones on and on. At the supper table as I'm passing the green beans. At night when I'm lying awake because my brain won't shut off due to all there is to think about.Is today the day?And if not today--when?I am asking myself this now as I stand on a narrow ledge six stories above the ground. I'm so high up, I'm practically part of the sky. I look down at the pavement below, and the world tilts. I close my eyes, enjoying the way everything spins. Maybe this time I'll do it--let the air carry me away. It will be like floating in a pool, drifting off until there's nothing.I don't remember climbing up here. In fact, I don't remember much of anything before Sunday, at least not anything so far this winter. This happens every time--the blanking out, the waking up. I'm like that old man with the beard, Rip Van Winkle. Now you see me, now you don't. You'd think I'd have gotten used to it, but this last time was the worst yet because I wasn't asleep for a couple days or a week or two--I was asleep for the holidays, meaning Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's. I can't tell you what was different this time around, only that when I woke up, I felt deader than usual. Awake, yeah, but completely empty, like someone had been feasting on my blood. This is day six of being awake again, and my first week back at school since November 14.I open my eyes, and the ground is still there, hard and permanent. I am in the bell tower of the high school, standing on a ledge about four inches wide. The tower is pretty small, with only a few feet of concrete floor space on all sides of the bell itself, and then this low stone railing, which I've climbed over to get here. Every now and then I knock one of my legs against it to remind myself it's there.My arms are outstretched as if I'm conducting a sermon and this entire not-very-big, dull, dull town is my congregation. "Ladies and gentlemen," I shout, "I would like to welcome you to my death!" You might expect me to say "life," having just woken up and all, but it's only when I'm awake that I think about dying.I am shouting in an old-school-preacher way, all jerking head and words that twitch at the ends, and I almost lose my balance. I hold on behind me, happy no one seems to have noticed, because, let's face it, it's hard to look fearless when you're clutching the railing like a chicken."I, Theodore Finch, being of unsound mind, do hereby bequeath all my earthly possessions to Charlie Donahue, Brenda Shank-Kravitz, and my sisters. Everyone else can go f---- themselves." In my house, my mom taught us early to spell that word (if we must use it) or, better yet, not spell it, and, sadly, this has stuck.Even though the bell has rung, some of my classmates are still milling around on the ground. It's the first week of the second semester of senior year, and already they're acting as if they're almost done and out of here. One of them looks up in my direction, as if he heard me, but the others don't, either because they haven't spotted me or because they know I'm there and Oh well, it's just Theodore Freak.Then his head turns away from me and he points at the sky. At first I think he's pointing at me, but it's at that moment I see her, the girl. She stands a few feet away on the other side of the tower, also out on the ledge, dark-blond hair waving in the breeze, the hem of her skirt blowing up like a parachute. Even though it's January in Indiana, she is shoeless in tights, a pair of boots in her hand, and staring either at her feet or at the ground--it's hard to tell. She seems frozen in place.In my regular, nonpreacher voice I say, as calmly as possible, "Take it from me, the worst thing you can do is look down."Very slowly, she turns her head toward me, and I know this girl, or at least I've seen her in the hallways. I can't resist: "Come here often? Because this is kind of my spot and I don't remember seeing you here before."She doesn't laugh or blink, just gazes out at me from behind these clunky glasses that almost cover her face. She tries to take a step back and her foot bumps the railing. She teeters a little, and before she can panic, I say, "I don't know what brings you up here, but to me the town looks prettier and the people look nicer and even the worst of them look almost kind. Except for Gabe Romero and Amanda Monk and that whole crowd you hang out with."Her name is Violet Something. She is cheerleader popular--one of those girls you would never think of running into on a ledge six stories above the ground. Behind the ugly glasses she's pretty, almost like a china doll. Large eyes, sweet face shaped like a heart, a mouth that wants to curve into a perfect little smile. She's a girl who dates guys like Ryan Cross, baseball star, and sits with Amanda Monk and the other queen bees at lunch."But let's face it, we didn't come up here for the view. You're Violet, right?"She blinks once, and I take this as a yes."Theodore Finch. I think we had pre-cal together last year."She blinks again."I hate math, but that's not why I'm up here. No offense if that's why you are. You're probably better at math than I am, because pretty much everyone's better at math than I am, but it's okay, I'm fine with it. See, I excel at other, more important things--guitar, sex, and consistently disappointing my dad, to name a few. By the way, it's apparently true that you'll never use it in the real world. Math, I mean."I keep talking, but I can tell I'm running out of steam. I need to take a piss, for one thing, and so my words aren't the only thing twitching. (Note to self: Before attempting to take own life, remember to take a leak.) And, two, it's starting to rain, which, in this temperature, will probably turn to sleet before it hits the ground."It's starting to rain," I say, as if she doesn't know this. "I guess there's an argument to be made that the rain will wash away the blood, leaving us a neater mess to clean up than otherwise. But it's the mess part that's got me thinking. I'm not a vain person, but I am human, and I don't know about you, but I don't want to look like I've been run through the wood chipper at my funeral."She's shivering or shaking, I can't tell which, and so I slowly inch my way toward her, hoping I don't fall off before I get there, because the last thing I want to do is make a jackass out of myself in front of this girl. "I've made it clear I want cremation, but my mom doesn't believe in it." And my dad will do whatever she says so he won't upset her any more than he already has, and besides, You're far too young to think about this, you know your Grandma Finch lived to be ninety-eight, we don't need to talk about that now, Theodore, don't upset your mother."So it'll be an open coffin for me, which means if I jump, it ain't gonna be pretty. Besides, I kind of like my face intact like this, two eyes, one nose, one mouth, a full set of teeth, which, if I'm being honest, is one of my better features." I smile so she can see what I mean. Everything where it should be, on the outside at least.When she doesn't say anything, I go on inching and talking. "Most of all, I feel bad for the undertaker. What a shitty job that must be anyway, but then to have to deal with an asshole like me?"From down below, someone yells, "Violet? Is that Violet up there?""Oh God," she says, so low I barely hear it. "OhGodohGodohGod." The wind blows her skirt and hair, and it looks like she's going to fly away.There is general buzzing from the ground, and I shout, "Don't try to save me! You'll only kill yourself!" Then I say, very low, just to her, "Here's what I think we should do." I'm about a foot away from her now. "I want you to throw your shoes toward the bell and then hold on to the rail, just grab right onto it, and once you've got it, lean against it and then lift your right foot up and over. Got that?""Okay." She nods and almost loses her balance."Don't nod.""Okay.""And whatever you do, don't go the wrong way and step forward instead of back. I'll count you off. On three. Okay?""Okay." She throws her boots in the direction of the bell, and they fall with a thud, thud onto the concrete."One. Two. Three."She grips the stone and kind of props herself against it and then lifts her leg up and over so that she's sitting on the railing. She stares down at the ground and I can see that she's frozen again, and so I say, "Good. Great. Just stop looking down."She slowly looks at me and then reaches for the floor of the bell tower with her right foot, and once she's found it, I say, "Now get that left leg back over however you can. Don't let go of the wall." By now she's shaking so hard I can hear her teeth chatter, but I watch as her left foot joins her right, and she is safe.So now it's just me out here. I gaze down at the ground one last time, past my size-thirteen feet that won't stop growing--today I'm wearing sneakers with fluorescent laces--past the open windows of the fourth floor, the third, the second, past Amanda Monk, who is cackling from the front steps and swishing her blond hair like a pony, books over her head, trying to flirt and protect herself from the rain at the same time.I gaze past all of this at the ground itself, which is now slick and damp, and imagine myself lying there.I could just step off. It would be over in seconds. No more "Theodore Freak." No more hurt. No more anything.I try to get past the unexpected interruption of saving a life and return to the business at hand. For a minute, I can feel it: the sense of peace as my mind goes quiet, like I'm already dead. I am weightless and free. Nothing and no one to fear, not even myself.Then a voice from behind me says, "I want you to hold on to the rail, and once you've got it, lean against it and lift your right foot up and over."Like that, I can feel the moment passing, maybe already passed, and now it seems like a stupid idea, except for picturing the look on Amanda's face as I go sailing by her. I laugh at the thought. I laugh so hard I almost fall off, and this scares me--like, really scares me--and I catch myself and Violet catches me as Amanda looks up. "Weirdo!" someone shouts. Amanda's little group snickers. She cups her big mouth and aims it skyward. "You okay, V?"Violet leans over the rail, still holding on to my legs. "I'm okay."The door at the top of the tower stairs cracks open and my best friend, Charlie Donahue, appears. Charlie is black. Not CW black, but black-black. He also gets laid more than anyone else I know.He says, "They're serving pizza today," as if I wasn't standing on a ledge six stories above the ground, my arms outstretched, a girl wrapped around my knees."Why don't you go ahead and get it over with, freak?" Gabe Romero, better known as Roamer, better known as Dumbass, yells from below. More laughter.Because I've got a date with your mother later, I think but don't say because, let's face it, it's lame, and also he will come up here and beat my face in and then throw me off, and this defeats the point of just doing it myself.Instead I shout, "Thanks for saving me, Violet. I don't know what I would've done if you hadn't come along. I guess I'd be dead right now."The last face I see below belongs to my school counselor, Mr. Embry. As he glares up at me, I think, Great. Just great.I let Violet help me over the wall and onto the concrete. From down below, there's a smattering of applause, not for me, but for Violet, the hero. Up close like this, I can see that her skin is smooth and clear except for two freckles on her right cheek, and her eyes are a gray-green that makes me think of fall. It's the eyes that get me. They are large and arresting, as if she sees everything. As warm as they are, they are busy, no-bullshit eyes, the kind that can look right into you, which I can tell even through the glasses. She's pretty and tall, but not too tall, with long, restless legs and curvy hips, which I like on a girl. Too many high school girls are built like boys."I was just sitting there," she says. "On the railing. I didn't come up here to--""Let me ask you something. Do you think there's such a thing as a perfect day?""What?""A perfect day. Start to finish. When nothing terrible or sad or ordinary happens. Do you think it's possible?""I don't know.""Have you ever had one?""No.""I've never had one either, but I'm looking for it."She whispers, "Thank you, Theodore Finch." She reaches up and kisses me on the cheek, and I can smell her shampoo, which reminds me of flowers. She says into my ear, "If you ever tell anyone about this, I'll kill you." Carrying her boots, she hurries away and out of the rain, back through the door that leads to the flight of dark and rickety stairs that takes you down to one of the many too-bright and too-crowded school hallways.

Editorial Reviews

“At the heart – a big one – of “All the Bright Places” lies a charming love story about this unlikely and endearing pair of broken teenagers.”  — New York Times Book Review “…this heartbreaking love story about two funny, fragile, and wildly damaged high school kids named Violet and Finch is worth reading. Niven is a skillful storyteller who never patronizes her characters – or her audience.”— Entertainment Weekly “Many teen novels touch on similar themes, but few do it so memorably.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review  "In her YA debut, adult author Niven creates a romance so fresh and funny. . . The journey to, through, and past tragedy is romantic and heartbreaking, as characters and readers confront darkness, joy, and the possibilities—and limits—of love in the face of mental illness.”—Publishers Weekly, starred review“The writing in this heartrending novel is fluid, despite the difficult topics… Finch in particular will linger in readers’ minds long after the last page is turned.”—School Library Journal, starred review"Ultimately, the book, with narration that alternates between Finch and Violet, becomes Violet’s story of survival and recovery, affirming the value of loving deeply, grieving openly, and carrying your light forward."—The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books “Have The Fault in Our Stars withdrawal? Pick up this heartrending novel about a girl who vows to live with purpose after bonding with a boy who plans to end his own life.” — SELF Magazine"It’s touching, vibrant, and an impressively honest depiction of depression." — BuzzFeedA Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2015A Miami Herald Best Books for Children 2015GoodReads Choice Awards 2015 Young Adult Fiction Category WinnerA TIME Top Young Adult Book of 2015A NPR 2015 Guide to Great Reads Book From the Hardcover edition.