Published by Penguin Random House, Knopf Books for Young Readers on October 4th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, YA
Format: Paperback, ARC
Source: First In Line
Buy on Amazon
Reading Challenges: 2016 Goodreads Reading Challenge
From the author of the New York Times bestseller All the Bright Places comes a heart-wrenching story about what it means to see someone—and love someone—for who they truly are.
Everyone thinks they know Libby Strout, the girl once dubbed “America’s Fattest Teen.” But no one’s taken the time to look past her weight to get to know who she really is. Following her mom’s death, she’s been picking up the pieces in the privacy of her home, dealing with her heartbroken father and her own grief. Now, Libby’s ready: for high school, for new friends, for love, and for EVERY POSSIBILITY LIFE HAS TO OFFER. In that moment, I know the part I want to play here at MVB High. I want to be the girl who can do anything.
Everyone thinks they know Jack Masselin, too. Yes, he’s got swagger, but he’s also mastered the impossible art of giving people what they want, of fitting in. What no one knows is that Jack has a newly acquired secret: he can’t recognize faces. Even his own brothers are strangers to him. He’s the guy who can re-engineer and rebuild anything in new and bad-ass ways, but he can’t understand what’s going on with the inner workings of his brain. So he tells himself to play it cool: Be charming. Be hilarious. Don’t get too close to anyone.
Until he meets Libby. When the two get tangled up in a cruel high school game—which lands them in group counseling and community service—Libby and Jack are both pissed, and then surprised. Because the more time they spend together, the less alone they feel. . . . Because sometimes when you meet someone, it changes the world, theirs and yours.
Jennifer Niven delivers another poignant, exhilarating love story about finding that person who sees you for who you are—and seeing them right back.
Rating: 5 stars
Holding Up the Universe was sent to me after I won the YA Trivia Night at Barnes & Noble’s B-Fest. To be honest, I wasn’t sure that I would like it. Contemporaries tend to be very hit or miss for me, and after the disappointment that was Dumplin’ (again, review coming soon, sorry!), I didn’t think I could take another ‘girl who thinks she’s fat even though she isn’t decides to treat herself as a real person instead of a monster’ kind of book. Because of this, and also because I prefer to read books on my Kindle, it sat on my shelf for a little over two weeks, just looking at me.
Then everything changed when my Kindle broke. Suddenly both of the books I was in the middle of reading (Lies We Tell Ourselves and Glitter) needed to be set aside, and a physical book placed in my hands before bad things started to happen. After a moment of hesitation while looking at my TBR pile, (Kids of Appetite? The Sun is Also a Star? Zodiac?) I picked up Holding Up the Universe and started reading.
I don’t think I put it back down more than twice after that, and one of those was because I had to go to sleep. IT WAS THAT GOOD.
There are two main characters in this story. One of them, Libby, is a girl who’s trying very hard to live a “normal” life. There were circumstances when she was younger that led to her being homeschooled, and this year she’s heading back to public school. She is a big girl (they actually do give her weight, and it did make a difference to me), and she’s not expecting things to be easy because of that.
BUT GUESS WHAT? Good things happen. (okay, some bad things happen too, but it’s a book. I think it’s against the law for there to be only good things.) I don’t really want to give anything away, so let’s move on to the read alikes!
Well Wishes & Candy Fishes,