I’ll Give You the Sun Blog Tour: Interview with Jandy Nelson

Posted 09/17/2014 by alicemarvels in Author Interview


We are absolutely thrilled to welcome Jandy Nelson to the blog for her I’ll Give You the Sun blog tour! We’re such huge fans of the book and are pleased as punch that Jandy agreed to answer a few questions for us. Check them out below and then scroll down to enter to win a paperback copy of another of Jandy’s fantastic books, The Sky is Everywhere!


The characters in I’ll Give You the Sun have so much artistic passion and talent, though it is expressed in different ways. If you had to choose one of your characters to create a piece of art as a portrait of you (in any medium: paint, sculpture, photo, sand, clothing, etc.), who would you choose and what would you have them create?

Love this question but wow what a hard one. Well, I’d love Guillermo to make one of his enormous abstract giants in my honor or Jude to make a Jandy flying sand woman or Grandma Sweetwine to make me a Floating Dress! But ultimately, I think I’m going to choose Noah to do a series, to create an invisible museum for me, tracking my most emotionally charged moments in his wild imagery, in his very bright robust color palette. I’d love to see what he’d make of my life! Dying to know who/what you would choose too?

(I would love to have Guillermo make me into one of his giants, partially because they sound absolutely gorgeous, but also I’d just like to watch him sculpt – it’s an intense process!)

Noah and Jude each do some rather dangerous daredevil stunts in the book. What’s the most daring/dangerous thing you’ve ever done in real life?

Well, I’m pretty much of a chicken. I’m the person on the airplane grabbing the stranger next to her like a loony at the slightest bit of turbulence. And I hate being in enclosed spaces. And feel like fainting at the sight of a spider. And constantly think I have some life-threatening illness. But weirdly, I really think about daredevils a lot and generally wish I were less Woody Allen-ish, less concerned with my mortality, and that I were braver. But unfortunately, I think it would take a Zombie Apocalypse or someone at the door threatening my family or friends with a cleaver for me to really step it up. (I just saw the movie Divergent and though I’d like to be Dauntless there’s absolutely no way they’d let me in.) But to answer your question more directly, I don’t have a fear of heights and I love hiking and so have definitely climbed some treacherous cliffs and boulder-hopped up some mountain-faces that might make others shudder. I’ve also para-sailed which I loved (hundreds of feet over the ocean!) and once jumped off a very high cliff into the ocean (at least it seemed Everest-high to me—maybe it wasn’t!). And then, of course, getting corny here, falling in love is pretty dangerous and I’m big into taking that very daring leap again and again!

The voices of Jude and Noah are very different—each captivating and beautifully written in their own way. Whose voice was easier to slip into when you were writing the book?

Thank you! It really depended what mood I was in. I felt a real affinity with Noah’s dreaminess and how explosively and passionately he saw both inside and outside himself. On the other hand, Jude was a lot of fun because of her self-deprecating humor, and really, she’s quite bonkers for a lot of the book, which made it exciting to ride along with her. Ultimately though, I think Noah might have been a little easier for me to slip into but I enjoyed both equally and was surprised by both equally.

What three books would you recommend for fans of I’ll Give You the Sun and The Sky is Everywhere?

The first is Black Swan Green by David Mitchell just because I think it’s so amazing and not enough YA lovers have read it. The voice of the thirteen-year-old boy in this book is so authentic, so funny, so alive, it made me want to throw my computer out the window. He’s a King of a writer. Also, Weetzie Bat by Francesca Lia Block, again such a favorite of mine. I just love her language; it makes me want to do cartwheels. I also would recommend Benjamin Alire Saenz’ Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe and Patrick Ness’ A Monster Calls. Also: I think readers who like my books will also like the wonderful work of Gayle Forman, Nina LaCour, Nova Ren Suma, Margo Rabb, Sara Zarr, and David Levithan if they haven’t already devoured the books of those amazing writers—oops—way more than three!

Those are some fantastic recommendations! Thank you so much for stopping by Jandy!

About I’ll Give You the Sun:

ill-give-you-the-sun-jandy-nelson-reviewA brilliant, luminous story of first love, family, loss, and betrayal for fans of John Green, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell

Jude and her twin brother, Noah, are incredibly close. At thirteen, isolated Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude cliff-dives and wears red-red lipstick and does the talking for both of them. But three years later, Jude and Noah are barely speaking. Something has happened to wreck the twins in different and dramatic ways . . . until Jude meets a cocky, broken, beautiful boy, as well as someone else—an even more unpredictable new force in her life. The early years are Noah’s story to tell. The later years are Jude’s. What the twins don’t realize is that they each have only half the story, and if they could just find their way back to one another, they’d have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant novel from the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.

I’ll Give You the Sun is on shelves now! Signed / personalized copies are available from Books Inc.


About The Sky is Everywhere:

9780142417805_large_The_Sky_Is_EverywhereSeventeen-year-old Lennie Walker, bookworm and band geek, plays second clarinet and spends her time tucked safely and happily in the shadow of her fiery older sister, Bailey. But when Bailey dies abruptly, Lennie is catapulted to center stage of her own life – and, despite her nonexistent history with boys, suddenly finds herself struggling to balance two. Toby was Bailey’s boyfriend; his grief mirrors Lennie’s own. Joe is the new boy in town, a transplant from Paris whose nearly magical grin is matched only by his musical talent. For Lennie, they’re the sun and the moon; one boy takes her out of her sorrow, the other comforts her in it. But just like their celestial counterparts, they can’t collide without the whole wide world exploding.

This remarkable debut is perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Francesca Lia Block. Just as much a celebration of love as it is a portrait of loss, Lennie’s struggle to sort her own melody out of the noise around her is always honest, often hilarious, and ultimately unforgettable.

About Jandy Nelson:

Jandy Nelson (photo credit Sonya Sones)

Jandy Nelson, like her characters in I’ll Give You the Sun, comes from a superstitious lot. She was tutored from a young age in the art of the four-leaf clover hunt; she knocks wood, throws salt, and carries charms in her pockets. Her debut novel, The Sky Is Everywhere, was on multiple Best Books of the Year lists, was a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults pick, earned numerous starred reviews, has been translated widely, and continues to enjoy great international success. Currently a full-time writer, Jandy lives and writes in San Francisco, California—not far from the settings of The Sky Is Everywhere and I’ll Give You the Sun. Visit her online at www.jandynelson.com or find her on twitter at @jandynelson.

Blog Tour:

Be sure to check out the rest of the blog tour, featuring guest posts, interviews, giveaways, and more!

Sept. 1 – Cuddlebuggery

Sept. 2 – Novel Sounds

Sept. 3 – Perpetual Page Turner

Sept. 4 – Forever Young Adult

Sept. 8 – The Young Folks

Sept. 9 – The Book Hookup

Sept. 10 – Grown Up Fangirl

Sept. 11 – Bewitched Bookworms

Sept. 15 – Candace’s Book Blog

Sept. 16 – Novel Novice

Sept. 17 – Alice Marvels

Sept. 18 – Icey Books

Sept. 22 – The Midnight Garden

Sept. 23 – The Starry-Eyed Revue

Sept. 24 – Tales of a Ravenous Reader

Sept. 25 – Katie’s Book Blog

Sept. 29 –GReads!

Sept. 30 –Anna Reads


Enter to win a copy of The Sky is Everywhere, courtesy of Penguin Teen! (US entries only please).

a Rafflecopter giveaway



    Oh I loved this and I have been seeing this around all over the place. Thanks so much for sharing it!


    Oh wow, I love the new paperback cover of The Sky. Man, that book broke my heart and I’ve been excited for more Jandy Nelson books since then. Cannot wait to get my hands on I’ll Give You the Sun, it sounds fantastic.


    It’s actually very complicated in this active life to listen news on Television, therefore I simply use world wide web for that reason, and take the newest information.


    Great interview! Jandy mentioned some of my favorite books/authors so I’m already convinced I’ll really like her book as well. 🙂


    Yea, I would want to be in Dauntless too but would never make it. 🙂 I do want to try para-sailing though some time. So need to read this book! Great interview!


    I am reading some phenomenal reviews for this one, I really want to check it out. I love the sound of the main characters.


    I do wonder what happened to the twins, sad to drift apart


    Wonderful interview, ladies. 🙂 Those things may not be considered ‘daredevilish’, but they’re sure exciting. This book sounds really good.


    Loved the book recommendations! Spiders scare me too and it’s interesting to read about Jandy’s view on love and danger. Thanks for sharing!


    The more I hear about this novel, and author the more I want to read it. Fantastic recommendations, loved the interview 🙂


    I love the new edition of The Sky Is Everywhere! I already have two (the little sky blue diary-like edition is my favorite), but I’ll have to get this as well, just to have them match. I’m OC like that. And wow, those are some recommendations! I trust Jandy completely. Her prose is a thing of true beauty, unlike anything I’ve come across… ever. So I’ll have to read those I haven’t read yet. Hopefully soon.


    “I’m the person on the airplane grabbing the stranger next to her like a loony at the slightest bit of turbulence. And I hate being in enclosed spaces. And feel like fainting at the sight of a spider. And constantly think I have some life-threatening illness.”

    IT’S LIKE WE’RE THE SAME PERSON!!!! The above is me in a nutshell. Keep me away from planes with turbulence, spiders, and Web MD which always helps to convince me I have cancer when it fact it’s really a bug bite 😉 So excited to read this book. LOVED the interview!


    I LOVE reading artistic characters. Generally, that makes me actually want to *see* their art (and makes me a tad jealous that I’m not as good as an imaginary character. Yes, I have issues. Heh.). I really can’t wait to read this book *begs book gods* please let it be everything I hope for!!


    I got this book at BEA and have heard great things about it so far. It sounds like a really character driven story and I love dual POV! Especially male/female. Both characters sound really fun, too, and I always wonder how an author can write such different voices. You really need to slip inside their mind as an actor would do. Great interview! 🙂


    LOL Jandy we totally agree about that chicken part! I wish I was more kickass and brave but that’s simply not me. I loved getting to meet her better so thank you Lauren for sharing this with us 🙂


    Great questions and I loved Jandy’s responses! I feel so honored to be on this blog tour, too…my stop is next week. This is hands-down my favorite book of the year. I can’t imagine another book making me smile, tear up, or rage more than this one did. Loved this interview!


    I LOVED this book so much! I love that art question. I agree with you, I’d like to be made into one of the giants. And I really need to read her rec A Monster Calls. It’s been sitting on my shelf, waiting. Thanks for sharing!

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