who help hold up my universe. and for all my readers everywhere, who are the world to me. Text (C) Jennifer Niven. Courtesy of Penguin Books Ltd. Holding Up the ciepredengunsee.ml Jennifer ciepredengunsee.mled by: Ziyad AsaadEnglish Books [PDF] on Facebook. New York Times ciepredengunsee.mlngaurtioi-of /'LL THE BRIGHT PLfl(XS Jennifer Niven HoUPING) up the UNIVERSE Jennifer Niven Contents 18 HOURS EARLIER.
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I struggled with a lot. This is because she has a very self-righteous attitude and she makes just as many dumb decisions as Jack -- but yet she doesn't seem to ever be sorry about them? Whereas Libby just justified herself. Plus there was a scene at the end view spoiler [ where she and Jack had broken up and she was making out with an exchange student until she realised she shouldn't because she still loved Jack Like let me applaud.
Mainly "omg this is adorable" and "omg I can't even with how much I love them" and " please do not let my precious adorable cinnamon roll Jack die because I love him so". I loved this. I mean, there are a few negatives. Aside from not really connecting with Libby at all , I was surprised that there wasn't much variation in the settings.
I didn't really understand a lot of the characters motivations. Like why wouldn't Jack tell his parents he's face-blind?? And why wouldn't Libby go to the principal when she was bullied, yet she told other students to go to the principal when they were bullied?? Also Jack can't recognise his family fair; he has a disorder and this makes sense but even in his own home he says stuff like "the man I assume is my father" I can recognise my family coming down the stairs without even looking at them.
Maybe this is just picky: Of course it's going to be his mother tell him to put the coffee down or whatnot??? All in all: Every time I did, I wanted to snatch it back up again. I adored Jack and his lion-mane afro and his swagger.
View all 10 comments. I fell in love with this book allll over again! I adore Libby. I adore what she stands for.
I love what this book stands for. The hope it instills. How personal it is to the author and how appreciative I am that she shared her story with us. I'm rooting for this book! I'm rooting for myself.
I'm rooting for all the readers who have ever felt less than. Initial review! I'm sure a lot of you will remember the ton of backlash this book received when the blurb was revealed. I mean, let's not get into that aspect of people having the audacity to judge and write-off a book when they haven't read a single page of it. It's aggravating to the core!
So, having read the book, yes, there is a lot of 'fat-shaming' that's mentioned throughout the book. Fat-shaming that the main character has to deal with, i.
But also the main character 'fat-shaming' herself, because of her insecurity, as a direct result of the bullies and other factors.
I personally don't see how this is a problem, to bring to light this sort of issue. Yes, it was slightly uncomfortable to read at times, making it real and raw. This is exactly the kind of realistic bullshit some people unfortunately, have to deal with, as ugly as it may seem.
As well as the insecurity and the mental-health issues that come alongside it. I don't understand how it was even assumed that the author was ridiculing people who deal with weight and mental-health problems. If perhaps they'd waited a little longer for some clarification, and did their research, they'd have known that this topic is quite personal to the author. But that's not all that the book is about. Yes, the character struggles with her weight, she's insecure to an extent, but she's absolutely fuckin' strong!!!
She's almost sure about who she is. As sure as a teenager can be. She refuses to let her weight define her, stand in her way of her dreams, and fights the fuck back against anyone that dares to ridicule her.
And she's happy, dammit! This element is what made the book for me. She was headstrong to begin with, because she made herself be so! Though there are romantic aspects, her problems didn't magically disappear, because there was a guy in her life. But she refused to hide her true self. Because of this, I feel that this book is so empowering! A book that those who feel that can relate to Libby, can find strength in. Though Libby encompasses aspects of her personality that may contradict or clash — i.
You're never fully one or the other, anyway. This is what I personally got from this book. I guess, like every other book, people will interpret it differently, according to their own understanding and worldview. And this is mine. Initial review: Okay, wow. It's 4am.
Read this book in less than a day. My heart is floating. I'm dying with feels. I was not expecting to love this book so much. View all 16 comments. Nov 27, Christy rated it really liked it Shelves: Holding Up the Universe was an interesting and moving read with complex characters and a unique storyline. Our story centers around Libby Strout and Jack Masselin.
She decides to take the plunge, stop homeschooling and go to high school. Libby is a fantastic character. She has a great relationship with her dad and meets some good friends throughout this journey for her. She also meets Jack Masselin in a very unconventional way. But he struggles every single moment of every single day. See, Jack has this secret. To wake up each morning, look at my husband and not recognize his face. Libby is the only one who knows about this and is able to help him.
He doesn't always deserve her help, but that's not the point. It's just the way Libby is. I love her for it. Their friendship grew and developed as the story progressed. I loved them both and I loved that they had each others backs.
Jack won me over early on, just knowing he was rooting for Libby from the very start warmed my heart. Even though there were some hard to read moments, the story, overall, was a positive one. I felt happy when I finished. I give this one 4 stars!
View all 18 comments. Looks like they updated the synopsis. View all 25 comments. I may lose more weight. I may not. But why should what I weigh affect other people? But the more the issue grew, the more I got so pulled to the book that I just had to download it when it was out on our local bookstores. This time, my gut feel was right and the book is completely worth all my curiosity. It is not our job to tell someone what they feel or who they are. Why not spend some time judging yourself?
Both Libby and Jack suffer from unique sorts of mental illness. Libby suffered from depression while Jack has face-blindness or prosopagnosia. What the book is not: I agree with my friend, Ate Shelby.
Do check out her awesome, very insightful review by clicking her name. Jennifer Niven does deserve a pat on the back. View all 33 comments. I don't usually rate before reading but I am doing it here. I have a few questions: Why are people getting annoyed and commenting that a 'skinny' author shouldn't be writing about a 'fat' person?!?
Are we saying that authors should only write about what they are? No more white authors writing about anything other than a white character then. George R. Martin please stop publish I don't usually rate before reading but I am doing it here. Martin please stop publishing, you've never been a dragon or a woman so I think you need to stop writing about them.
Rowling, are you a witch Take back HP, it's all lies! The human race thing Why are people sniping in on that? Do they not understand the context. It's not saying she's finally rejoining the human world because she wasn't human before. It talks about the fact she was homeschooled She's going back to school I've used similar phrases when I've returned to work after two weeks off sick. The crane: This has been a reality for so many people who are very overweight so why can't it be wrote about or shown in movies!?!
Maybe wait till you've read the book before you judge every little thing about it. View all 12 comments. Jun 27, Fuzaila rated it really liked it Shelves: Not for the romance, but for the message, for the underlying subject of dealing with obesity and questioning the general norms of beauty in our society. Her immaculate consistent flow is very easy to read. Niven uses these silly similes and metaphors that probably was meant for emphasis, but felt nothing short of ridiculous. Just picture that and tell me if you survive.
Of course people love to watch her dance. Of course she marries the prince. Like, look at fairy tales for instance. No fat princesses, no zits ever on any of those flawless faces. No people of color. Same falls for the Princes too. Except for The Beast who also turns out to be a handsome young prince. That you need to look good and ooze beauty for you to have a fairy-tale-happy-ending. The way it addresses the issue of obesity is what won me over. Just read it! View 2 comments. Really enjoyable read from Jennifer.
It touched your feels completely differently way compared to All the bright places. I really enjoyed the characters in this book, completely filled with diversity. This is an important lesson to teens, be tolerable and don't follow the crowds. This was a forced buddy read with fake yam View all 48 comments.
EDIT 4: AHH love the cover! It's minimalistic but aesthetic and I can imagine how nice it will look in real life: EDIT 3: Well, they changed the synopsis! And I actually like it much better. It has me much more excited now! Okay, I can't stand it anymore. I'm writing another edit. So many really popular reviewers--that have thousands of people following them--have written such terrible things about how "offensive" the synopsis sounds and how this book was ever even written by a EDIT 4: So many really popular reviewers--that have thousands of people following them--have written such terrible things about how "offensive" the synopsis sounds and how this book was ever even written by a "skinny person.
How do you know, that when she was a kid or a teenager, she didn't go through the same thing? That's why you can't even say that. You are just as offensive, because you are saying terrible things about the author and an un-published book because of your bias.
Maybe you guys should think before you write. I'm not saying this is going to be the best book ever. I'm not even saying I'm going to like it. What I'M saying is that I'm going to read it with an open mind, clear away all bias, and not rant about how stupid the book sounds and that this book doesn't deserve being published.
You can't say that. And you know what? I'm going to go fucking download this book the moment it comes out.
Just because I can and I will. Just to support the author. I completely agree with these other reviews: Okay, back off people! There's a difference between saying your nervous for it and already rating it one star because you think the synopsis is offensive. Which it's NOT. Wait for it to come out! Give the book a freaking chance! If we're judgmental like this to books, how will we ever enjoy them? You have to read the book with an open eye because otherwise your prejudice towards it will ruin the book for you anyways.
Calm the fuck down. Find all of my reviews at: Big, small, short, pretty, plain, friendly, shy. Especially not yourself. You see, Libby said craned-out MC weighed pounds at one point and did, in fact, have to pretty much get the windows blown out of her house in order to be saved when she was almost dying.
But instead of people being reasonable, this happened. And Holding Up The Universe got blacklisted and the blurb had to get changed and a whole bunch of other assholery occurred like the much loved All The Bright Places magically also became super offensive and apparently now is thought to belittle mental health and oh my Christ now I know why people talk about effing snowflakes so much! I give zero poops.
Or keep being offended just for the sake of being offended, because that seems legit. ARC provided by Crown Publishing in exchange for an honest review — which took me eleven thousand years to write because I am a jerkoff. THIS book looks offensive? I really just don't understand people. Because I'm fat, I'm fat and I know it sh'mon! View all 41 comments. Oct 26, Elyse Walters rated it liked it. I was sooooo in the mood for a "All in the Bright Places" repeat-type-experiencethat the disappointment that I wasn't going to have my desire filled, only added to my already blue mood I've been in this week.
It's not the author fault. I've read a couple of other books about Prosopagnosia not having the ability to recognize faces of familiar people. One was a non- fiction book. The other was a fiction- mystery-thriller story. The structure of alternating narration between the two main characters was simply boring for me Jack begins by saying: And you will hate me, and some people will hate me, but I'm going to do it anyway to protect you and also myself".
We know that by the type-font change. Oct 06, Larry H rated it really liked it. I'm between 3. Don't go into reading Jennifer Niven's new novel, Holding Up the Universe , thinking this is going to be identical to the phenomenal All the Bright Places which made my list of the best books I read last year , in tone or the emotional power of its subject matter.
I don't say this to denigrate Niven's new book in any way—I think with this book she set out to tell a different and more personal story, yet one with slightly more universal themes.
Why me? Why do I have the worst luck ever? Why is the universe so mean?
Why does everyone hate me? My mom used to say sometimes it's actually about the other person and you just happen to be there. Like sometimes the other person needs to learn a lesson or go through an experience, good or bad, and you're just an accessory in some way, like a supporting actor in whatever their scene happens to be. Once dubbed "America's Fattest Teen," when she weighed pounds at her heaviest and had to be cut out of her childhood home while the media watched, she's spent the last two years being home schooled while she recovered.
Now pounds lighter, she's ready to go back to high school and be someone different, someone with tremendous possibilities, new friends, maybe even someone that a guy could fall in love with. When Libby meets Jack Masselin for the first time, it's an encounter that winds up with both of them getting detention, having to go to counseling, and participate in community service for their school.
Jack has always seemed like someone who has it all, and knows it—he's good-looking, a bit cocky, and tends to swagger through school. But this bravado hides a significant vulnerability: Jack has prosopagnosia, or the inability to recognize faces, even those of his family members or people he's known all his life.
Each time he sees someone, he has to try and figure out who they are, and he's not always successful, which leads to more uncomfortable situations than he'd like. In Jack, Libby sees someone who is hiding their true self, someone who understands what it's like to have secrets and sadness and emotional anguish, while in Libby, Jack sees fearlessness, even when she's being mistreated.
But as much as he's drawn to Libby he has to wonder if the persona he needs to maintain in order to protect his secret would ever really give someone like Libby attention.
And Libby has to decide whether pursuing everything she wants without worrying about the consequences is actually worthwhile, or if she should just do her best to hide in the background.
Holding Up the Universe is a story about finding courage when you feel you don't have any, and not letting anyone sway you from what you want. It's also a book about finding hope after loss and difficult times, and how to hang on to that hope in the face of adversity. But more than that, this is a book about letting people see who you really are, and admitting when you need help.
There were things I really loved about this book and things that bothered me. I liked some of the characters very much, and loved how Niven revealed their complexities little by little.
This certainly was a unique story in many ways, but it didn't feel gimmicky in any way, and there was so much emotion and heart in this story, but it never felt emotionally manipulative. What bothered me is just how cruel Libby's classmates were even if I know this fact better than I'd like to admit, even all these years later , how unending that cruelty was, and how she really wasn't willing to tell anyone what was going on.
There were a lot of things which remained unsaid in this book, and I found that frustrating. I also admit that I wondered whether someone like Jack would actually find himself falling for a girl who still weighed pounds, and that distracted me a little bit. I issued my warning at the start of my review because I'll admit I went in hoping for another All the Bright Places , so some of my disappointment was my own unrealistic expectations.
It's a book that deserves to be read on its own merit, and although it didn't touch my heart as much as Niven's last book, it still proved Niven's tremendous talent. See all of my reviews at http: Oct 01, Lola rated it really liked it Shelves: Ah, this book What a sweet love story. First, the diversity.
The heroine, Libby, is fat though she used to be fatter and Jack is Black and has a condition that makes him unable to recognize anyone, even friends or the people he loves.
I hope you're not shocked by my blunt description of Libby. If you are, I suggest you do not read this book, because it talks about weight extensively, and Libby is indeed overweight. Although, while this affects her life, she is happy with the fat she lost and Ah, this book Although, while this affects her life, she is happy with the fat she lost and is a truly inspiring character who doesn't hesitate to bring up weight in order to make a point.
I think many readers didn't like how often weight is brought up in a conversation or how Libby never managed to escape her own, whether at school, in public or with Jack. But as someone who understands what it's like to have more weight than the average girl, I can tell you someone who isn't skinny is faced to think about her weight every single day.
It's something you have to accept and start being comfortable with if possible, because there will always be times when you'll wish you could wear that top or for that guy over there to look at you. And Libby is the kind of person who'll give you an entire sermon if you start complaining about your weight. She'll motivate you to think differently or maybe even start pulling yourself together and eat and behave in a healthy way.
But she herself has to figure some things out. After all, she has been home schooled for many years now, and isn't used to being in public much anymore. So this path she has to take, in order to become familiar again with the outside world, is full of obstacles and little demons, but she knows she has to take it anyway. I know I've barely mentioned Jack--who, incidentally, is a very important character also--but that's because I've connected so much to Libby and she prompted me to think about so many topics.
Plus it does somewhat feel like this is Libby's book. Without Jack, some things would be bleak, but there still would be a story. Without Libby, this wouldn't be a book. View all 3 comments.
I thought it genuinely would be a good book and instead… yikes. Libby is the fat girl. Jack has prosopagnosia the inability to recognize faces. No other traits. I guess those could also be her defining features, along with being extremely annoying and irritating??? It was like things literally happened to them and they just let it happen?? There were hardly any times that they felt like actual people with actual emotions and feelings.
New girl at school views herself as unattractive and gets bullied. Popular boy with most of the girls at school pining after him suddenly finds something so!! And obviously this girl is better than all the mean popular girls that he dated and then they fall in love despite having no chemistry. Forced love, my favorite.
That is not an okay message!! God, that romance. It was just partly cured for her?? If that makes sense. But we literally could not name what it was?? But not really.
Or pink ballet shoes??? Despite mentioning ballet many times???? You TURN. If Libby is a true dancer like she believes to be, she should know this. Again, it literally takes a simple Google search to figure this out!!! But thanks for making me imagine a whole arm stretching out from my eyeball!!! This book actually sucks.
View all 30 comments. Oct 23, Ayesha rated it did not like it Shelves: So glad that the fifteen year old me didn't read this then I would've been all like "oh I'm fat but my life won't get better until I find a hot guy lol". I see no point in the whole story. Everyone, I guess. Thus, as stereotypical as those students could be, they noticed her in her first day of school after she locked herself up in the bedroom, lying on the bed, doing nothing but reading and eating for years.
The only thing I find heartwarming is the fact that Jack has rooted for her since the day she was cut out from her bedroom and carried by a crane. But then I see her. Libby Strout. I can see it as it bypasses the moon and the stars and goes blasting into another galaxy. I lie there for the rest of the night waiting for my heart to return to my chest. Mercifully, Jennifer ended the story in a really positive and uplifting way. As usual, I feel powerful and energetic after finishing the book because she made Jack and Libby a happy couple and wrapped all those matters up lovely.
View all 26 comments. Jan 07, Rachel Reads Ravenously rated it really liked it Shelves: You are wanted. You are necessary. You are the only you there is. Holding Up the Universe is about Libby and Jack. A couple years back Libby had gained so much weight that she needed to be rescued from her house to be saved. Jack has a secret, he cannot recognize faces, not even his own.
The two become conne 4 stars! The two become connected after Jack does something he regrets, and a friendship begins. Through friendship becomes an attraction, but both have personal barriers they need to get past.
You're not the only one. I am not a fan of All the Bright Places, it was one of those books where everyone loved it except me.
But I was intrigued by this book and I liked Niven's writing style so I wanted to give it a shot. I myself am overweight, and while I am nowhere near Libby's size I could easily relate to a lot of what she was going through, even though I am an adult. High school is hard enough without adding in the fat shaming factor and I really admired her strength and tenacity when dealing with the hateful comments of others.
Jack's story was very interesting, I knew little to nothing about face blindness before reading this book. I think Niven did a great job of describing what day to day life would be like living with this condition. Jack himself was one thing I didn't love about this book. He had a lot of growth by the end, but ultimately I still feel Libby deserves a better guy than him.
Beautifully written, Niven has sold me on anything else YA she writes in the future. I always love when an author has a book I didn't connect with has the ability to write something different, it shows variety in her writing style. Hey fam! Sep 27, Brian Yahn added it Shelves: From the description, it sounded like All the Bright Places meets Bone Gap -- which sign me the fuck up!
It seemed like Jennifer Niven spent the whole time trying to convince me these characters were interesting, rather than them actually being interesting.
It wasn't that the story was bad, it's just that--after reading All the Bright Places --I have such high regard of Jennifer Niven that I didn't want this to ruin it. View all 8 comments. Initial reaction reading this book: I don't know if I'm angry at this book as much as I am just completely left exhausted and drained by this book, and not even in a fulfilling way.
I mean, I've been left completely gutted by Courtney Summers and Lauren Oliver's narratives before, but in ways that made me feel like I identified with the weight of the character's struggles and situations, and to me, the characters they crafted were dimensional, well-thought out, and kept me reading to see what w Initial reaction reading this book: I mean, I've been left completely gutted by Courtney Summers and Lauren Oliver's narratives before, but in ways that made me feel like I identified with the weight of the character's struggles and situations, and to me, the characters they crafted were dimensional, well-thought out, and kept me reading to see what would become of the characters.
I think the problem I have with Niven's narrative here and I had this same problem with "All the Bright Places" is that her characters are too singular in dimension to me, and the problems expounded upon are things that not only lack a certain connectivity despite being well researched and getting some things right in terms of the emotional roughness, but it doesn't feel REAL.
And the horrible sluggish pacing in this book just amplified that even more because it felt like certain points were rehashed and told instead of shown. Full review: I'll try to keep my reaction short and sweet for this book, but in sum: I didn't care for it for a number of reasons. I was willing to pick this book up despite my experiences with "All The Bright Places" which I didn't care for either, but I did applaud some aspects of the novel in the aftermath of the overarching read.
Having picked up "Holding Up the Universe" revealed some of the same issues that bothered me in "All The Bright Places", but there were other issues that surprised me that were unique to this book. Again, I applaud the fact that Jennifer Niven chose to write about two teens with unique and horrifying experiences based on the prejudices of people who don't understand them and the fear associated with being continuously stigmatized and misunderstood at least taking the intentional bare bones of this story for what they are.
I applaud that she shows how the two teens with these unique experiences come together in a relationship of some form again: Problem is that the execution of this narrative for those intentions was not done well. 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.. Praise "I've never fallen in love with characters as fast as I fell for Libby and Jack.
Holding Up the Universe is a beautiful reminder of the power of understanding.